Gacheru Mundia, 28 years, runs a Laundry business called Wash & Dry Zone at St.Paul’s University. He shares with us his entrepreneurship story.
How did you come up with your business idea? And what has been your experience as a Young Entrepreneur?
The business was born from a gap I observed at the University. I realized that with most of my friends at St. Paul’s University where I was a student, their laundry loads was building up on a weekly basis. They didn’t have time to do their laundry, and when they did, sometimes the weather factor proved to be a negative drive to them sorting out their laundry. This drove me to writing a proposal to the St Paul’s University to gain space to open a laundry venue for students.
As a young entrepreneur, gaining support for one’s idea is tough because you are always being pushed to finish your education and get work before your idea makes sense or relevance to people. This does have a measure of bringing a negative blanket to ones dreams. However, I wasn’t held back and I kept pushing and looking for support in order to get the equipment needed for the business to work.
Entrepreneurship is an experience defined by ones passion in order for there to be relevance to your dreams.
What are some of the challenges you faced, as well as the successes?
The process of gaining approval and space was a stretch. This is because I had to consistently give explanation on how the service is of benefit to the University and to the students. Finally, after getting approvals for business space I was able to begin making the plans, but the drain of doing paper work, electrical, installation of machinery and woodwork for work area was a challenge.
The business has grown due to the buildup in customers, as it does not only target students, but also the administration and local residents. The university has provided good business support by using our services through placing large orders, which has in turn played a part in increasing our profits and helped us make other investment for the business.
What are the lessons you’ve learnt so far?
Gacheru Mundia also recently signed up his business (Wash & Dry Zone Ltd) for our Mobile 2 Bank solution for businesses. After signing up, he was assigned a Paybill Number that will play a big part in collecting monies from his clients (via Mpesa Paybill) and have the monies settle in his Chase Bank Business Account in real time. He will also be able to pay out anyone, for instance his suppliers. He will also be able to get statements for all his banking transactions that help build his credibility, and be able to eventually access the banks credit facilities based on this.