Filling a market gap
Pascal Mshanga has 3 advises for new business owners: First, be passionate about what you do. Second, know the industry you are going to enter. And third, make your business unique.
Pascal Mshanga is 25 years old and currently studies Bachelor of Law at the University of Dar Es Salaam (Tanzania). In 2015 he participated in the STEP training, by now he owns a restaurant. His restaurant is named Pweza Café; pweza is the Swahili word for octopus. The name derives from the kind of food he is offering: he sells seafood like local fish and the eponymous octopus which he gets from the fish market in town.
The idea was born one day when he walked around with his friends after work, looking for seafood. Suddenly he realized that in this area there was no restaurant offering such food, hence he decided to open up a seafood restaurant.
Before he actually started the business, he shared the idea with some of his friends. He asked the ones who are business owners themselves, to get professional feedback and different points of view on the subject. Since his friends supported him in his intention, he decided to take the risk. He started with doing market research, looked for a suitable location and made detailed plans. When starting his business, several challenges emerged. There were bureaucratic aspects like getting the demanded licenses and financial issues such as getting starting capital and coming up with money for renovation expenses as well as the rent fee. But due to his determination and the support by friends and colleagues from the university he did not give up and finally opened his very own seafood restaurant in December 2015. His customers enjoy well prepared seafood in a classy atmosphere, entertained by radio or TV. If they are not able to stay they can even order take away food or make use of the delivery service.
By 2015, Pascal made about 154$ sales per month, payed himself a salary of 68$ and had one full-time employee. One of the challenges he is still facing is the time management aspect as he is still studying at university besides being a business owner. That is why he has to split his time carefully to ensure that his studies as well as the restaurant get the needed amount of attention.
The STEP training helped him a lot in solving this problem as well as many other problems. For instance, the STEP training made him understand the key business aspects such as marketing, accounting and book keeping. Furthermore, he was taught how to conduct a market research prior to the establishment of a business. But the most important thing he learned is to take a risk. And that is exactly what he did. Successfully. Therefore, his future plan is to expand his business to other parts of the country to reach a wider population.
If he could give three advices to someone who wants to start a new business his advices would be the following: First, you have to be passionate. Don’t start a business just because of the profit but love what you do. Second, you have to understand the industry you want to work in. Knowing the industry and the dynamics involved is vital. Third, you have to think of something which makes your business unique. You should carefully analyze the market, particularly your potential competitors. Only then you can develop new marketing styles to top everyone else.
+49 4134 9099726
+49 4134 9099726