Immaculee Kayitesi, 45, runs a milk business. She started the business during difficult times in 1995 after the genocide, selling five liters a day and slowly kept rising to 10 liters. Today she is one the most enterprising women in the business in Nyanza district supplying over 1300 liters a day.
“Life was very hard at the time, I had no house to stay,” she confesses.
Through a job creation program dubbed ‘Hanga Umurimo’ (HUP), Kayitesi is now making her dream come true because of the support she receives from the program- which she joined in order to improve her business product.
“It all begun with a desire to transform my business and I just went to attend the HUP training to see what was happening. This is where I got the idea and skills then I submitted my project and it was chosen among the best two” she says
With an assurance of a bank loan of over 64millions from Bank Populaire (BPR), which she got through the HUP program, Kayitesi now wants to use the money to upgrade the business by making all milk products- such as yogurt, cheese, milk butter and others.
So far, Kayitesi has used part of the loan to build a production station and ordered for a distribution truck and milk processing machines. The next step in her business plan will be install the machines and start full production.
With this expansion of the project, she plans to increase the labor force from 10 to at least 50 workers and increase her production of milk and other milk bi-products so as to compete effectively but meeting the required standards.
A bank loan has to be used for the purpose it was requested for. If you use it for other projects, that can be dangerous because each loan has a specific plan of use, and for example you cannot use a business loan for a construction project- it is absolutely incompatible” she advices.
Kayitesi was assisted by the consultants working for the private sector at business development centers (BDC), to come up with a perfect project implementation plan. “This was cheap and I didn’t spend much compared to working with individuals. They (BDC) did a very good since they are experienced in this area. This is how I got my project plan to qualify for a loan”
Kayitesi however advises other entrepreneurs to join the HUP program and seek professional training in doing business.
“My business has now begun to boom because of the support of HUP and especially the training I received. I am sure that is what is very important in changing the face of any project, for whoever is in business sector” she says.