We are very excited to announce that Maya Nazareth, founder of Alchemize Fightwear, won the Hen Hatch Pitch Competition! Maya is a Jr Brand Manager for Ascendant Group, and has been an invaluable member of the team since September 2020. Her main focus is helping manage clients, and helping clients create opportunities for themselves and their personal brands.
Maya founded Alchemize Fightwear in May of 2018 after deciding that she wanted to open an online store in a market area that she was knowledgeable in. One piece of advice given to poets is to “write what you know.” The same principle applies to entrepreneurs. Maya has practiced Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for almost five years, but said that the gear did not fit correctly, was uncomfortable, and left her feeling unattractive and self-conscious. In mixed martial arts (MMA), confidence is key to success.
Maya spoke with friends, all who agreed that the current selection of women’s equipment was woefully inadequate. This was the beginning of Alchemize Fightwear. Although she didn’t know how to start a business, Maya read books on entrepreneurship, listened to podcasts, and created a plan to make her dream a reality. The first real step was hiring graphic designers and product developers to produce the first few hundred Alchemize rashguards.
In order to promote her brand, Maya mostly utilized social media platforms, targeting groups of women MMA members. She connected with women customers who participated recreationally and offered products to athletes and influencers who then promoted her brand.
MMA sports are becoming increasingly popular, with many women joining Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Maya explains that one reason is because, in Jiu Jitsu, men and women are on an even playing field, which means women can be just as -if not more- successful than men.
Women’s MMA may be a small niche sport now, but in 20 years Maya believes it will be just as popular as yoga and wearing yoga pants to all aspects of life. With the Hen Hatch Prize and a potential investor, Maya aspires to become the number one women’s MMA equipment line.