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Success Stories 5

Bassam Abed Rabbo, grocery store manager and owner, Russayfah

For two years, Bassam struggled to keep his limited selection of frozen foods grocery running. He worked alone, kept an improvised, often inaccurate balance sheet and hoped to sell enough products to customers who had the choice of three other similar groceries on the same street. Business was a daily strain.

When a Tamweelcom manager passed by on one of his frequent visits to various businesses along the street, Bassam decided to hear him out. With his first loan of 500 JD, Bassam bought himself a new freezer, and expanded his selection of frozen foods. He bought frozen meats which he chopped up and packaged according to the needs of his customer. Upon advice from his Tamweelcom manager, he introduced sales on his products, attracting more customers.
 
Bassam Abd Rabbo

In the meantime, and with his Tamweelcom case manager constantly available for support, Bassam repaid his loan in good time. He took on another loan of 1,200 JD and opened another grocery store four meters up the road. He hired three employees for both stores. The second store specialized in yoghurts, cheeses, pickles and processed meats. He hired an accountant for the separate administration of both stores.

Today, five years later, Bassam has plans for the third store: a fresh chicken butchery. His Tamweelcom case manager continues to visit him regularly to offer advice and support.

'The hard times are over', Bassam says with clear optimism. 'So much has come out of nothing'.

His Tamweelcom case manager is clearly affronted by his last statement.

'Not from nothing, Bassam', he corrects him, 'it was your hard work, good sense and total commitment. So much has come out of that.'

Boshra Sarayrah, pharmacist, Zarka

When Boshra was six, she gave out prescriptions to her cousins and school friends. She used to sign them: Boshra, pharmacist, from Boshra's Pharmacy.

In 2003, Boshra, now a fully qualified pharmacist, opened her place of business: Boshra's Pharmacy.

But in her first year she wasn't just struggling, her shelves were practically empty, as was her cash box. Too proud to turn to family for financial help, she continued to serve her clients with diligence often calling them up to remind them to take their medication, or that medication they had purchased from her pharmacy had expired, and running out to deliver medication to those who were too old or too infirm to reach the pharmacy.

Boshra had heard of Tamweelcom. People around her had mentioned the company with the small loans; and it struck her one day that perhaps a small loan might just help.
 
Boshra Sarayrah

When her first loan helped fill up the empty shelves and earn her a tidy income, Boshra set her sights on her real ambitions. She wanted to make natural healing products. Boshra conducted her own research and assessed her clients' general needs.

She then took on another loan from Tamweelcom with the full support of her case manager. She purchased her first active ingredients for her own line of natural healing products for the skin. Boshra had seen her clients' frequent distress at the condition of their skin, the pain and discomfort certain conditions gave. She knew that imported products were aimed at mild and general skin conditions with no ability to treat specific skin problems.

Boshra's clientele grew steadily. Her list of natural skin healing products grew as well. Her case manager supported her with ways to market and promote her products. Boshra's reputation, like her list of clients and products, grew.

'The first Tamweelcom loan picked me up', Boshra says, 'and allowed the pharmacy to survive, but the second Tamweelcom loan launched the skin healing products. So I don't just have a successful business, I have a place where people can come to find solutions to their unique medical problems.'

Sana Hamdan, dairy producer and retailer, Irbid

Sana's dairy product business started ten years ago. She brought 60 kilos of milk every day and sold yoghurt, butter, cheese and labneh (thick creamy yoghurt) at home. She did so, she says, because she was making these products anyway for her family, and selling a few extra kilos to others was more of a pastime than a real income.

In spite of a college degree in business administration, she was reluctant to develop her home business much further. But Sana was soon persuaded by a Tamweelcom manager to take on a group loan based on a home business. It was a very small loan, but it helped Sana come to terms with her business potential. Soon after, she agreed to start out on her own.
 
 
Sana Hamdan

She opened a small store on a small street in the town of Irbid, using homemade dairy equipment in the back room. There were several well-established dairy factories in the same area, but Sana's reputation was already so well-known that despite her rudimentary equipment, new clients were rapidly outnumbering the old ones.

Upon the advice of her Tamweelcom case manager, she joined a Tamweelcom promotion bazaar to display her products. 'I gained many different clients through the bazaar,' she says.

Very soon, the 60 kilos of milk a day to meet client demands had grown to 100, then 200 kilos of milk a day.

Today, Sana turns 300 kilos of milk a day into the various dairy products for which she has become so famous. She has clients in Amman, the UAE, and Saudi Arabia.

Sana is thankful for the initial encouragement and subsequent support from Tamweelcom. 'They started me off in a direction that I never thought possible,' she says.

Sana has plans to move to larger premises, buy specialized dairy product machinery and equipment to replace her home-made ones, and hire a couple of employees to assist her.

'I don't know what will stop me now,' she muses. 'I found a passion for what I do, and I intend to keep this business growing.'

Ala Sabti, gym owner and Taekwondo trainer, Um Nuwwara

Ala Sabti’s young Taekwondo students don’t look up or get distracted when the visitors walk in through the door. Their concentration is firmly on Ala, their instructor. This is what they do, what they want to do, twice a week, in this 3-year-old indoor training space.

Ala’s professional vision was always clear. As national Taekwondo player and national referee, training people was always going to be his ultimate goal. Two years ago, and with only 50 students during his first year of operation, he took his first loan from Tamweelcom. He used the loan to buy special flooring material and body fitness equipment. He divided the space into morning fitness sessions for women, and the afternoon for men, and by the second year he had 150 customers.
 
Ala Sabti
 

Last year, Ala took another Tamweelcom loan and bought a bus to transport his young charges from and to his indoor fitness gym. The freedom of movement for his young students meant that more students could sign up for Taekwondo classes. The bus was an excellent investment, and by the third year he had 250 students.

Ala now intends to expand his gym to include electronic exercise equipment such as treadmills and stair climbers. He wants his indoor fitness equipment to cater more effectively to clients.

Ala acknowledges the advice and support he gets from his Tamweelcom case manager. But he knows that passion and commitment also drive his business. His customers have as much passion about Taekwondo and fitness as he does. His mixed gender Taekwondo students want to reach the national standards that he once set his sights on. His gym is a personal achievement that highlights his commitment to his sport and lifestyle.

‘And it’s also a good income,’ he concedes.

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