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Kirby Roseina and Nas Connie have spent their careers working in creative fields like casting, fashion photography, and advertising. While they loved working in the industries, they grew sick of watching the same type of actors and models—tall, white, and blue-eyed—getting hired again and again.
So they decided to do something about it.
On April 1st, the couple launched London-based INC.MGMT, an inclusive modeling agency focused on representing LGBTQIA and POC individuals.
“Being queer and people of color,” says Roseina, “We just wanted to create something for us and by us.”
The couple is not trying to establish INC as a niche business. Their goal is for INC, which stands for inclusive, to garner mainstream attention and for their models to be hired for mainstream jobs.
“We just want to see more inclusivity across the board,” Roseina declares.
As a brand new company, the couple is focused on building relationships and getting their models noticed. “I think some of our biggest challenges at the moment are just getting our name out there and getting people to see the longevity in it,” says Connie. Many brands, she explains, are currently “jumping on a bit of a wave of inclusivity.” While she says this is not inherently bad, she also hopes INC can help ensure inclusion is not a passing trend.
“Eventually we want INC to speak for itself,” Connie continues, “and in the future, for it to not be out of the ordinary to look to INC for a model. We want it to be that brands and casting agencies look to us on the every day, to know we’re there not only for times when they need specific people to fill a specific role.”
“We do need brands to be brave,” adds Roseina, “and take that step and be like, ‘you know what, this is really needed. Let’s use some of their models.'” She believes doing so is not only the right thing, but that it’s also good for business. Brands, she says, need to start reaching out to more demographics if they want to appeal to everybody.
Roseina and Connie are also dedicated to providing mental health support to their models, which is why INC also has an integrated mentoring program that helps teach positive mental health and self care habits.
They also want to support their models’ other pursuits. Most of the models they currently represent are also musicians, visual artists, videographers, Youtubers, and other creatives. Connie and Roseina hope to create a space where they can show off those talents as well. This will begin at the company’s Pride Month launch party, where the models will be welcome to display their other work.
Connie and Roseina launched INC with no outside funding and, while they are still fledgling and still learning every day, they also know they are onto something. They have received applications from models all over the world, from Belgium to Nigeria. While for now they are focusing on the UK, they are so excited by the global interest and believe it indicates a true need for what they are doing.
As such, they are proud they have worked through the challenges to bring INC to life. “We were two people on a sofa,” Roseina says, “With just an off the bat idea, and we ran with it.”
April 28, 2019 at 11:08AM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs