You may not have enough Capital to start a business but you can utilise the resources around you
Describe your business to us?
I run a business called Tasty Artsy Cakes and Pastries, we are a baking company that bakes a variety of products ranging from cakes (wedding cakes, anniversary cakes, cupcakes), cookies, donuts, meat pies, etc. In addition to baking, we also do training for individuals who are interested in baking professionally or at home. We have been in business since February 2019.
What inspired the idea of Tasty Artsy Cakes and Pastries?
Let me start with what inspired the name, Tasty Artsy Cakes, and Pastries. Tasty stands for sweet. We bake delicious cakes and artsy is the art of the cake, we do not just bake sweet cakes, but we go out of our way to make them appealing to the eye. What inspired me to start a baking business is the fact that I have always been in love with the kitchen, I do not just cook for the sake of preparing a meal but rather I cook to enjoy that meal. I remember trying to make cakes using a Jiko but it would always backfire. After campus, I went back to school to study cakes to learn how to do it right, afterwards I decided to do it as a career rather than look for a job.
What does entrepreneurship mean for you and why did you choose to pursue this journey?
I got into entrepreneurship for 2 reasons, to make an impact in society and to earn a living. So many young people are unemployed. For instance, where I come from, my rural place, my dad is a CDF chairman and people are always asking him for a job. He always gives an example of his daughter who went to university and she has never asked for a job. She understands that there are few job opportunities, so she decided to create an opportunity to make an income for herself through baking. Young people need to know that they can still earn a living despite not having an education or they may have an education and no formal employment. A good example is that most cakes that are consumed in events in other counties come from Nairobi, this shouldn’t be the case, people living in these counties can empower themselves so that they can supply cakes in these counties and make a living from it.
How has the entrepreneurship journey been for you, you are sitting at home, you have identified a gap that you want to fill, what happened next?
When I started, I took advantage of the resources that were already available to me and information sources. I did not have a cooker, but I was living with my aunt at the time. I started using her cooker as a source of heat. When I started to sell, I began importing other equipment from China and this is because it was much cheaper. For an item here in Kenya worth Kshs.300, I would get it in China for Kshs.50. Whenever I got a client, I would save some money to buy the equipment that I needed. Fortunately, I was able to get into a program at Nailab called The Next Economy Program and at the end of the program I did crowdfunding, where I got support from my friends and family and I was able to raise enough money to buy more equipment. Also through the 6 months entrepreneurship training at Nailab I was able to gain the skills to run a business. I apply these skills in the day-to-day running of my business. I also made sure to perfect my product and my clients were so happy they would always refer other people to me, through these referrals my business was able to grow.
What are the key lessons that you have learned throughout your entrepreneurship journey?
The first lesson is to always be a go-getter if you want something to go after it and let nothing stop you. Never let capital be the reason to stop you from starting, you may not have the money but look around you and find resources that you can use to start your venture and the third lesson is do not be discouraged by other people following your dream always.
How do you market your products and get new clients?
Most new clients are referred by my friends and clients I have served in the past. I also do marketing through social media channels like WhatsApp and Instagram. I also approach organizations for partnerships.
Tell us a bit about yourself, what do you enjoy doing when you are not busy building your business?
My name is Tula Rono, a 25 years old mother of one and someone who is very passionate about cooking. I enjoy traveling, interior décor, and making new friends. I like to think of myself as a go-getter and I love to grow myself and those around me. I am a graduate of Maasai Mara University.