Kisa Foundation USA
Small Business Loan Program
December 3, 2010
Once or twice a month Patrick Kyongera takes a bus or taxi from his home near Kampala, Uganda to Mombasa, Kenya on the Indian Ocean, a 1200 km trip taking about 14 hours.

On the wharf in Mombasa surrounded by stacks of newly unloaded shipping containers, Patrick haggles with importers to buy clothing, purses, shoes and other apparel items. He bundles up his purchases and loads them on a bus for the return trip to Uganda. Back in Kamapla, Patrick goes to the huge outdoor markets in Kisseka and Owino, and sells his goods to some of the thousands of small clothing merchants and vendors in store fronts and shanties.

Patrick got the idea for importing used clothing in October 2009 when he found himself with a business degree, but no job prospects. Using his business school training, he explored several different business ideas, and settled on importing clothing as the most promising.

The next problem was capital. He didn't have any. He approached Kisa Foundation with his idea, and we agreed to lend him enough money ($700) to get started. So far, Partrick is posting small profits on most of his trips, and looking for ways to increase his sales in Uganda. He'll start paying back his loan in December. To see a recent report of Patrick's trips, transactions, profits and losses, click below.

KFUSA has also loaned money to two individuals for small chicken raising operations. In January Zaina borrowed $275 to purchase broiler chicks. She lost a previous chicken feed business in rural Kamwenge when a larger, better financed competitor opened in the same town. She did well with the chickens, though, repaid her loan within three months, and used her profits to purchase more chicks. The money she paid was was re-loaned to her son, Moses Kiganda, a recent college graduate who is also a painter and a prize winning novelist. None of those occupations or honors provides a living however, so Moses borrowed funds to start his own chicken raising operation. He was also successful in producing chickens for market and a profit for his pocketbook. From the proceeds of his chicken sales Moses paid off his loan and ordered a new batch of chicks. Read Patrick's report of his day-to-day business dealings as he struggles with transportation costs, exchange rates, and negotiating prices.

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