KUALA LUMPUR: Leaving paid employment to start a venture is a pretty hard decision for many.
Without proper guidance and experience, budding entrepreneurs often end up hitting a brick wall.
However, thanks to the Secretariat for Empowerment of Indian Entrepreneurs (SEED), there are now better prospects.
Former IT executive J. Jaiavijayan, 42, said he had to fork out his own money to expand his betel leaf business.
“I have a piece of land near my house in Kapar, less than an acre, planted with betel plants.
“I was hoping to bring my family business to the next level but my plan did not turn out as expected.
“Without proper guidance, I was going nowhere,” he said.
Jaiavijayan said a friend brought him to seek help from SEED which introduced credit facilities.
“After learning and applying the knowledge, my venture became bigger. I know how to market my product and find potential customers.
“SEED has taught me a lot in terms of keeping a systematic checklist, connection with the right people and how to do proper follow-ups,” he said.
Single mother G. Tamilselvi, 53, said SEED provided her a new lease of life, enabling her to expand her late husband’s business.
The mother of four is currently running a business based on construction slope stabilisation.
“I do most of the work from managing the office and staff, contacting suppliers as well as maintaining the machines and spare parts.
“SEED introduced me to Tekun where I got three loans to buy machineries to upgrade my business. Now, I am diversifying my business to export olein oil to Bangladesh,” said the former school teacher.
Businesswoman V. Indrani Vartharaju, 30, described her learning experience under SEED as “empowering”.
“I did not have any business knowledge but now, I am assisting my husband to run the business,” she said.
The mother of two said meeting new business partners helps to expand networking.
SEED was established under the Prime Minister’s Department to help Indian entrepreneurs.
Its main tasks are credit facilitation, provide credit risk management, business advice and assist government-linked companies and vendor development programmes.
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