Making it as an entrepreneur is difficult as it is – all the barriers to entry, finding sufficient funding, and surviving the growing pains – but the rewards and freedom are well worth the blood, sweat, and tears. However, it is even more difficult for women to make a name for themselves in such a competitive industry. Although the number of women entrepreneurs has increased in recent years, there is still much to be achieved in order to achieve equity.
On paper, things have never looked better for female entrepreneurs. But these numbers only tell part of the story. Women-owned businesses are still in the minority, and the hurdles faced by women who have embraced entrepreneurship are vast and often very different from those experienced by others. In that sense, Danya Mohammed, also known as Diva Dee, is an amazing woman, serial entrepreneur and actress who has faced many obstacles in her journey but she hasn’t let any of them stop her. Quite the opposite! Today, Danya is an internationally recognized personality and a successful business owner.
She runs several businesses. Her first one is a streetwear cap line known as BYD. It focuses on bridging Danya’s Arabic background in the designs of streetwear caps. Her second business is The Bicnic, an amazing event company that organizes beautiful beach set up experiences on Dubai’s famous beaches. She also runs a very successful Youtube channel, with over 24 million subscribers, where she talks about beauty, make-up and lifestyle in general.
It all started in New York City, the city that never sleeps! Danya was in the university when she first visited The Big Apple and she was greatly inspired by the youth of the city, who worked tirelessly towards their dreams! She felt so motivated that she decided to create her own cap line. In fact, her first batch of caps were made in New York. The brand was hugely successful, and the rest is history!
“I usually come up with a concept/business that I feel not everyone has touched on and something I am passionate about which can give high revenue with least investment required. And to be honest, curiosity is always my inspiration”, Danya shares.
Her biggest exposure in the media scene was being on Netflix’s newest reality show Dubai Bling , which has been the first show that comes out of the Middle East that has been ranked the number 2 watched show globally! In fact, it became an instant hit after debuting last October. Dubai Bling invites the viewer into the world of the emirate’s elite and has been getting a lot of love from the audience.
On the show, Danya managed to captivate the attention of all viewers with her great talent and charisma. She stars alongside her husband, DJ Bliss, which definitely led them to be world-renowned personalities. Since debuting, the series has carved out a space for itself on the streaming platform’s most-watched list.
But not everything has been easy on Danya’s path. At the beginning, she had to deal with the fact of being a woman in a very competitive industry and with the obstacle of being taken seriously in today’s society.
“As a woman you have to prove yourself which means you have to work twice as hard to show you are competent. I think the biggest obstacle would be that. Hopefully the new generation will change that and value the importance of women in the workplace, business and in life in general” Danya details.
Danya is also really passionate about the environment and climate change. Truth be told, there are probably a billion reasons to care about the environment. The earth and everything in it has to offer is something that can’t afford to lose! That’s why Danya is always raising awareness through her social media.
“I also personally choose to be a pescatarian because that is my way of lowering my carbon footprint and giving back to the environment . The first thing we should consider supporting and speaking about is our planet because without it we will be nowhere”, she explains.
Danya also has a master degree in Project Management and she’s currently working towards her PHD in sustainable built environments. She loves learning and education has always been a major part of her life.
In addition, her keys to success include not comparing herself to anybody. As she says, she only competes with herself in order to always be a better version. Life can be a competition, but the race that we face doesn’t have to be against anybody else. A better way to refocus our efforts and harness competition is to look in the mirror and learn how to compete with ourselves!
Despite all the work that she has already done, she isn’t planning on slowing down any time soon. She details her next steps below:
“I am currently working on opening a coffee shop as well as looking at investing more into apparel, skincare and technology companies.”
Without a doubt, Danya’s story is a source of empowerment and inspiration not only to actresses and entrepreneurs, but to all of us. To find out more about Danya follow her on instagram here.