Customer of the Week: Fresh Prince Barbers
Che Kavanagh opened Fresh Prince Barbers earlier this year, with the goal to create a space that reflects the evolving needs of young men. Fresh Prince Barbers is a place where all men can relax, absorb the atmosphere and feel well-groomed. Inspired by all things 90s, Che and his team are challenging the barber scene.
Che has been cutting hair since he could remember. Constantly dissatisfied with the cuts he was getting at his local hairdressers, he was always “fixing” his hair once he got home to create the look he truly desired.
Around these years, Che’s two little brothers became his practice mannequins and slowly his clientele started to build amongst friends and family.
“My passion for hair and style lead me to become the go-to guy among my friends and family.”
Excited by a possible career, Che attended Auckland’s Mr Barber Training Centre in 2012, where he learned the principles and basics of barbering.
Che then jumped straight into work while studying at his local university. After trying to balance cutting with study for years, he decided to leave study behind and dive straight into where his true energy and passion lie — barbering.
Che and his team aim to provide the highest quality barbering service in town, and this means creating an engaging and supportive community that is tailored to their clients’ individual needs.
Che hired his right-hand man, Andrew Muasika on day one. The pair have hugely complimentary cutting skills and share the same values, allowing them to build the business the way they see fit.
Together, they’ve created 5-key pillars that underpin his business — and these ideologies are what he and his staff aim to provide clients, and one another, daily.
“We believe there are 5 key things we can offer through the platform of the barbershop: creativity, passion, confidence, diversity and service to others and the community.”
Che hopes the business can display to other young men and boys that anything is possible when you surround yourself with those who uplift you.
Community is something hugely important to Che and something that not only underpins his business, but also his life. Che has one paper to complete at the university before he can graduate with a double degree, a Bachelor of Arts in Māori Studies, and a BSW in Social Work. Che aims to complete this degree once the shop is more sustainable, and continue to support and uplift his wider community.
For Che, the best thing about running his own business is being able to create an ethos that supports his passions and ideologies.
“It’s rewarding turning up to work every day knowing that I am able to have fun doing the work I love and also have full creative control over the management of the shop.”
Although they’ve laid out their own values, Che stresses that it’s vital for business owners to be open for feedback.
“It’s important that you listen to your clients, and make subtle changes that will make their experience more enjoyable.”
Che and Andrew find balance in creating styles that their clients want, along with educating clients on fashions and injecting their own style into every look.
Che admits that his business still has a way to go before he can start seeing financial security.
“Good things take time, especially in business. However, we’re confident that we’re providing a top-quality and luxury experience for our clients.”
Still early days, Che has created a strong business model with great values — and this will speak volumes.
Fresh Prince Barbers has a strong online presence, showcasing many before and after shots of extremely happy customers.
We’re excited to watch on as Fresh Prince Barbers grow, and as they continue to evolve their business with community at its heart.