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Founder Feature: Lotika Pai and Wen Yao

Real, un-airbrushed women show off their curves on Powwful’s website. It’s a very intentional move on the part of Lotika Pai and Wen Yao, founders of the activewear brand designed for a range of body types. They want to show the beauty of actual women loving life in the bodies they have.

Lotika and Wen had some serious creds between them for starting a business. Lotika holds an MBA in finance, accounting, and entrepreneurship from the University of Chicago. Wen has a master’s in marketing from the Illinois Institute of Technology. Both women were ready to try their hands at running their own business in 2016.

They knew women’s activewear was a crowded space, but their personal experience with the magic that working out brought to their lives inspired them to try and stand out. And stand out they do. Powwful is colorful, comfortable, and sold at an accessible price point. The designs have their own back stories. Socks proclaim “We Run Better Than The Government,” and the LOL sports bra gets its inspiration from the motto, “Lift Other Ladies.”

Wen, a native of Taiwan, recently launched the brand in China. Her marketing background helped her to rework and reposition the brand for the buying preferences and behaviors of the Asian market.   


Katelyn Murphy-McCarthy

Katelyn is a writer and editor specializing in creative nonfiction. She comes from a long line of entrepreneurs, and loves hearing and sharing the stories of women who are making a difference.
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