Erika Alvarez
GCU London Alumna of the Year 2018
Founder and Creative Director Koua Mexico and Mexzik Home, fashion blogger
In recognition of her early career achievements and entrepreneurship in fashion and design
MSc International Fashion Marketing 2014

Erika was born and raised in Mexico, with her father encouraging her to get a ‘normal’ job to ensure financial stability. She originally attended Universidad Iberoamericana, Ciudad de México and got a degree in business.

Erika said:

"I am deeply honoured at being named the GCU London Alumnus of the Year 2018. Especially from the institution that was the basis for my career. Something that was just a dream when I started my programme at GCUL now is a reality and all the effort and hard work is being recognised. This is a huge motivation for me to continue believing on my dreams and to work harder for the new projects coming."
Read more about Erika

After graduation, Erika worked for a telecommunications company until she was 25. However, she always wanted to pursue her childhood dream of having her own fashion brand and in 2013 she quit her job and came to London to study International Fashion Marketing at GCU London, with her dissertation on online business. She then completed four unpaid internships to gain more experience and insight; in marketing within a luxury concierge agency, with a hat maker and designer, in a wholesale Chinese clothing brand and lastly in a video marketing company. 

With the dream of setting up her own business, she went back to Mexico for a year to research and get in touch with local communities for potential products. She came back to London and built two successful brands: Koua (fashion) and Mextik (home decor), both founded in late 2014/early 2015, immediately after graduation from GCU London. 

Her brands are top quality, bringing Mexican style to the UK, with elegant and impressive marketing. The businesses also aim to be fairtrade, as Erika strives to give back to communities in Mexico. 

After 3 years and 2 video campaigns she is planning the next collection for Koua and recently entered into a business venture with a Mexican company in London to jointly create the biggest online platform for Mexican products.