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South African offers taste of his homeland
A YOUNG entrepreneur from South Africa is making a name for himself with a new Basingstoke market stall.
Riccardo Zappia has been overwhelmed with the response since he began selling South African goods at the Top of the Town two weeks ago.
The 24-year-old, who moved to Oakridge, Basingstoke, in 1998, from his home in Durban, is already hoping to expand in the new year and open his own shop.
Mr Zappia, who also owns a florist, sells a range of food, magazines and films from his homeland.
He said: “I can’t believe we’ve done so well in such a short period of time – we’ve sold out of many things.
“I got the idea after some local people from South Africa would ask where they could get their favourite items from back home.
“I ordered some of the items and it took off.
“Since starting, I’ve been amazed at how many people I’ve met from South Africa who are here.
“The great thing is that local people are also interested in trying something different. I’m hoping to open a shop to sell the goods from.”
Mr Zappia has been helped by his family, who have put in hours at the stall on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Chantel Leech, originally from the Free State, South Africa, visited the stall on Saturday, from her home in Epsom, Surrey.
The 22-year-old said: “You can’t get these goods in normal shops, so it’s great to come here and pick up these things.”