How Family Bank Helped Me Grow My Business During Covid-19

by Business Watch Team
Family Bank

At the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, many businesses in Kenya were struggling. Hundreds of thousands of businesses were shut down and about 12 million people lost their jobs. (The correct number is unknown).

I was running a fast food joint within Nairobi’s Central Business District (CBD), along Tom Mboya Street. Business was good. And then Covid-19 happened and all the hope of living came crashing down.

The number of customers reduced to almost zero. We could open a whole day and go back home in the evening without a single customer. For years, in my business, I have been banking with Family Bank Kenya. I have maintained a Business Current Account for years with the bank.

The Family Bank’s Business Current Account is designed to save business owners the time and the hassle of managing their day-to-day business finances. With this account, a friend advised me to approach the bank for a loan. I had an interesting idea. I wanted to buy a motorbike.

Yes. I wanted to buy a motorbike and smaller cooking equipment that would have me cook from home. My idea was to cook from home and deliver food to homes and some select offices given that many people were working from home following the government’s directive.

Family Bank agreed. I received 800,000 shillings as a loan. Bought a motorbike and did exactly what I had planned. Within 3 months of setting up this new model of cooking and supplying food, I gained momentum and had at least 15 offices and about 18 homes that I was supplying food to.

Covid-19 was soon gone but I had cultivated my relationship with my client whom I still supply food to date. Some, when they have events, they invite me and my crew to go and cook for them. Sometimes I look back and say, was it not for that loan, my business would be part of the statistics of failed businesses.

As a small business owner, make sure you have a bank account and always ensure that the little you have passed through that bank. This will improve your record and chances of you getting a loan. Instead of customers sending cash to your M-Pesa number, give them the bank’s Paybill and let them deposit the cash directly to your bank account.

Do not be scared of taking that loan. Have a good plan and idea and it might just be your way out.

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