By Betsy Ramser Jaime
Kusi Obodum is a multi passionate entrepreneur, dividing his time between teaching, selling with the company HerbaLife and working as a driver. He was born into a large family, as the seventh of eight children. After high school, he was anxious to attend college, however, he had to wait a year before his test results came and before he could save up the funds. He pursued an education degree from the Manpong Technical College of Education and upon graduating, received his first post at Abirem D/A JHS in the Kwabre East District in 2012.
Soon after, he got married in 2013. At the time, his wife had been working as a trader. However, once they had their first son in 2014, she decided to stop trading to look after their son full-time. While this was the right decision for their family, Kusi knew that it would be a struggle to support his growing family on his small teaching salary.
His first side hustle was with an American nutrition company called HerbaLife. He was able to sell the product and would then receive bonuses and commissions. Unfortunately, as business slowed, Kusi found that he was ready to try something new.
This led him to enter the vehicle transportation business. He shares, ‘This vehicle business has been of help to the community a lot. l use to carry people from place to place to have their own businesses done. People chatter the vehicle which aid them to alight at a specific places of work and this is helping the community a lot. I selected this kind of business to support the HerbaLife which has been running slow over some months now. I got my income from teaching and the vehicles transportation as well . I also help in carrying who are nearby to depart to their various schools.’
When he first started marketing the HerbaLife products, he really struggled. He would talk about the products but didn’t have the money to keep any inventory on hand to show potential customers. Fortunately, his first Zidisha funded loan of $9 completely changed this. With his $9 Zidisha loan in hand, he bought some products, particularly the ‘Fibre and Herbs.’ He knew that from the customer’s perspective, being able to see and touch the product in person, made all the difference.
The following year, in March of 2017. Kusi secured his second Zididsha funded loan of $91. By this time, he had shifted to focus on his transport business. He was having some car problems and without the repairs, it would be a struggle to continue his business.
A few months later, in July 2017, his car required a new engine, estimating a new cost of $328. Fortunately, his loyal Zidisha lenders were happy to lend a helping hand. He also notes that this will allow him to be punctual in his work, as he won’t have to worry about car problems.
Most recently, in October of 2017, Kusi asked lenders for his largest loan yet, $888. He continues, ‘I will thank lenders of what they have been doing for me. God richly bless them. My vehicle still have a mechanical fault which needs to be resolved once and for all. The tire, the dashboard and as the body have become old. This will help increase my income for myself, the family and the community as a whole and some will also go to the charity fund. I will be expecting a percentage increase of about 70.’
Kusi would also like his lenders to know that his son, Wilford is now two years old and is in the Creative Learning Academy. Kusi hopes that one day his son will grow up to be a renowned businessman with many employees!
With the help of Zidisha, Kusi has been able to combine his strengths, talents, and education to create multiple streams on income for his family. By doing this, even when one stream slows down, he has two others to help sustain him. Did you enjoy Kusi’s story? Make sure to head over to our Lend page where you can check out the stories of our other inspiring entrepreneurs around the world.