She is nicknamed “the queen of franchising” because she was the first businesswoman to have been able to win the right to represent major world brands in Morocco, starting with Zara, Massimo Dutti Pearl & Bear and Gap in La Martina, etc., thus succeeding in having the honour of democratizing haute couture and making it accessible to all Moroccan social categories. This is Salwa El Idrissi Akhannouch, the Souss-based businesswoman whose reputation has reached the world and whom the Financial Times considers to be one of the most important businesswomen in Africa and the Arab world; a classification corroborated by many other specialized magazines.
She started with La Senza, a lingerie brand, before her business flourished and she founded her group Aksal, which became a 50% shareholder in the Morocco Mall, one of the biggest malls in Africa. Later, she launched her brand “Yan & One” whose title recalls her Amazigh origins that she has not forgotten, despite the fact that she was born in Casablanca. (Yan means 1 in Amazigh).
She inherited the love and business sense of her grandfather who was one of the greatest tea traders in Morocco. Her passion for business and commerce intensified after her marriage to the wealthy and famous businessman, Aziz Akhannouch, Minister of Agriculture and Maritime Fisheries and friend of King Mohammed VI.