[INTERVIEW]HOW I MADE N5000 WEEKLY AT MY LEISURE ~ CHIDIMMA NNAGBO, UNN STUDENT
For many undergraduates, campus is only about getting the best grades; to some others, they go beyond the best grades to adventure into campus politics, sports, fellowship and business.
Chidimma Nnagbo(ChyD) decided to have a taste of three areas of campus life aside academics – fellowship, politics and business. She is deeply involved in her campus fellowship, Student Christian Movement, where she served as Media/ICT Coordinator; campus politics, where she occupies the Faculty of Agric Vice President chair. And she is an entrepreneur.
On this week’s edition of Campus People, Brojid.com Editor, Joseph Dinwoke, talks with her on her campus entrepreneurship. She shares what motivated her to start, how she handled competition and made average of N5000 weekly.
Relax and enjoy our conversation.
Thanks for joining us on Brojid.com, Campus People. May we meet you please?
I am Chidimma Nnagbo. I am a student of University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Department of Food Science and Technology. I am a small scale entrepreneur. I am a poet and I blog. That’s pretty much about me.
What kind of business do you do?
I make and sell Zobo drink.
I live in the school hostel; so, I make it in my room and sell it there.
What motivated you into starting a business on campus?
It didn’t actually start as a business. A friend of mine refrigerated her zobo in my fridge and since I own a fridge, I reasoned, Why not make zobo and sell? So, I started with a few bottles. The following day, it finished so, I decided to buy more bottles and make more and it was selling fast. So, I decided to keep it up.
I increased the scale. I bought a cylinder and a bigger pot and I met some of the worker in our guest house, CEC and they supplied with cans. So, the canning wasn’t a problem.
Away from the business of zobo. What motivated you into entrepreneurship as a student?
A girl has to take care of herself. So, I decided to start something on my own and reduce the stress my guardian had to go through taking care of me in school.
How did you get your startup capital?
It wasn’t much sha. I didn’t have to hustle for it. I got it from my pocket money.
How much did you make in a week?
Average of N5000 every week.
While considering starting your business, were you not scared that it may affect your academics?
I was; but I don’t read 24 hours in school. I have leisure and I try to mange my time so the little time I use for leisure and gisting in the hostel, I could be making zobo and be gisting with my roommates.
The taxing part of this business is preparation which take my about 1.30 minutes and make 30 bottles. Selling it is not a problem. At times I sell; other times my roommates help me sell. And it doesn’t take much time.
I don’t read 24 hours in school. I have leisure and I try to mange my time so the little time I use for leisure and gisting in the hostel, I could be making zobo and be gisting with my roommates.
What was your parent’s reaction when they noticed you have delved into entrepreneurship instead of focusing squarely on your academics?
My mum was happy. She encouraged me. She bought me the bigger pot and I was helping her take care of myself so she was really supportive.
When you started, how did your publicize your business?
I printed flyers and pasted it all over the hostel. It was an easy business at that time. Many students hardly cook, most times; they come back from school on a hot afternoon. The easiest thing to take is zobo drink. So, it was easy attracting customers.
Did you get any negative reactions from your class mates or roommates?
Yes I did. Initially, when I started many people didn’t believe that I was selling zobo. My mum was impressed. She was like, you have gotten humble o. I was happy about that.
How did you handle competition?
The peculiar thing about zobo is that the quality depends on how thick it is. To maximise profit, many people pour too much water than is required; but I stuck with quality. Mine was thicker. I used natural ingredients – pineapples and other natural flavours. So, people from the same hostel with my competitor came to my hostel to buy. That was how my business boomed.
Campus entrepreneurship left me a better person. Now, I have acquired marketing skills. It made me know plenty people. It made me popular and increased my interaction people.
Which level are you taking your zobo business next?
I don’t do zobo anymore because of time limitation. I’m in my final year; that means more academic loads. I found other thing that replaced the zobo business and that is wire works and bead making. Then makeover too.
What inspired you into this new line of business?
I got inspired to start professional make over when I saw the transformation it does for people. I first thought of it when I saw ‘before and after’ picture of a woman with bunt face. The makeover concealed her burns; gave her a chance to be normal just like any other person. The art is also amazing. I don’t paint but I love art works. Being able to create art in someone’s face is just fulfilling.
There is this common thinking that every experience you have leaves you better or worse. How did being a campus entrepreneur leave you?
Campus entrepreneurship left me a better person. Now, I have acquired marketing skills. It made me know plenty people. It made me popular and increased my interaction people. It made me friendly with plenty people. It gave me business insight.
Keep a date with us next Wednesday on Student Groove as we serve you a super package.
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