USP Alumni Network

Graduating in 2005 with a Bachelor in Business Administration & Management with Information Systems from USP, Courtney Nicole Kruse decided that being her own boss was the job she wanted.

“I had worked part time while at USP but by the time I graduated I had decided I didn’t want to work for anyone for much longer other than just a means to an end and decided I wanted to start my own business”, she said.

While working at the Uprising Resort, Kruse seized the opportunity to open two [2] boutiques at the Arts Village in Pacific Harbour and at Palm Court in Suva in 2009 and 2010 respectively. The boutiques sold original Courtney Nicole designs together with imported dresses and accessories.

Drawing on her knowledge of management, marketing, sales and finance from her studies at USP, “the opportunity to open my own business allowed me to fulfil my dream of being my own boss and of source my love of fashion” commented Kruse.

For Courtney, growing up in Samoa her grandmother was her fashion icon. “Once a month grandmom and her friends would dress up for their golden gals club and all the ladies would look absolutely wonderful in their fashionable “puletasi” (our version of the jaba) accessorised with island-crafted jewelry, flower leis in their hair and of course imported heels to complete the outfit. I loved the way that fashion in the islands was somewhat conservative yet still elegant at the same time”, Kruse tells Alumni News.

“However competition grew fast. I had to expand my knowledge in the apparel industry and research more into what could grow my business. I had to find my specialty area, a truly unique selling point with a demographic always ready to buy. As the industry grew I decided to grow right alongside it. This experience made me recall my marketing lectures when my lecturer Dr. Ben Waqailiti would talk about competitive advantage and niche markets”, commented Kruse.

Joining like-minded business executives in professional associations like the International Women’s Association, American Women’s Association, Women in Business, Women Entrepreneurs & Business Council [WEBC], Fiji Association of Women Graduates [FAWG] and Corona have helped to build Courtney’s Business Portfolio and opened up new doors for sales.

Courtney is the owner and Managing Director of Applied Print Design [APD] formerly Shoreline Designs which according to Kruse is “strategically based in the Fiji Islands where the garment industry is thriving and is the hub for the manufacturing industry. After all, the number one rule of business is location”. APD has found its competitive edge offering complimentary one on one creative design consultancy to all of its customers and because the company is eco-friendly and supports a sustainable business model, it provides a range of environmentally friendly products such as eco-banners and backdrops. But that’s not all says Kruse “watch out for us because we will soon launch organic cotton and bamboo printed t-shirts”.

APD’s most recent campaign was to print and produce t-shirts and banners for the WOWS Kids Campaign who partnered with Uto ni Yalo trust to bring the Laughing Samoans over. “My success has come through a lot of hard work with help and support from family, friends and business associations and I thank USP for instilling in me the desire to want to be my own boss. I hope to remain in business for a long time” concluded Kruse.

Disclaimer & Copyright l Contact Us l 
© Copyright 2004 - 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Page updated: Thursday, July 23, 2020
The University of the South Pacific
Laucala Campus, Suva, Fiji
Tel: +679 323 1000