Black Plaque Project
5
Dyke
Dryden & Wade Entrepreneurs
Plaque
Category

Entrepreneur

Location

126a W Green Road

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THE BUSINESSMEN WHO MADE MILLIONS FROM THE BEAUTY INDUSTRY’S BLINDNESS TO BLACK WOMEN

Lincoln ‘Len’ Dyke, Dudley Dryden and Tony Wade were pioneering Black businessmen, who built a hair and beauty empire to become Britain’s first Black multi million-pound business.

Len Dyke and Dudley Dryden partnered in the mid-1960s, Dyke & Dryden Ltd. started as a record distribution company and a travel agency. Tony Wade officially joined the company as a secretary and director in 1968. Dyke & Dryden Ltd. later decided to concentrate on promoting hair and beauty products, during a time where Black women were virtually invisible to the beauty industry.

Their first shop in Tottenham was a huge hit in the Black community. They expanded rapidly and opened more and more branches, allowing them to successfully compete in the international market. In 1983, Dyke & Dryden went on to create an annual Afro Hair and Beauty Expo. Dyke & Dryden was then sold to an American competitor in the 1990s, after a fierce competition in what was now a multi billion-pound Black hair and beauty industry.

As former Sales and Marketing Manager at Dyke & Dryden Ltd (LINK: www.hairex.uk), Rudi Page has been championing the recognition of Dyke, Dryden and Wade.

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