Dusengimana Theophile and his young brother Gilbert Nsengimana operate a small kiosk at Kimironko a suburb in Kigali. It is a source of income that helps them move on with daily life.
According to them this small business pays caters for their daily needs and allows them to help a group of orphans, a business that has grown from being an MTN agent since 2017.
In 2017, Dusengimana was pursuing his university studies when he decided to do something more than just going to school. He chose to become a service agent of MTN Rwanda in August.
However, he had no fixed location and only hawked in public places to find clients. Later he managed to secure a small spot including a stool with an umbrella as usually seen by telecom agents on streets.
He worked harder to get to another level; MTN Rwanda provided him with a working box, that he still operates in even today.
As he began as an MTN service agent, helping people to get airtime, money transfer services, and more, he later realized he could add more, so he registered for Equity bank service agency in September 2019 and Bank of Kigali services agency later in November 2019 when his transactions increased.
Dusengimana told Taarifa that his small business by then, helped him pay tuition fees for his young brother Gilbert Nsengimana, who was still in high school.
Nsengimana completed his high school studies in 2017, he joined his elder brother in the same business in 2018 and since then, they have been working together.
Hard work and believing in the possibility of everything was all that they had to do to keep their business going, Dusengimana said in an interview with Taarifa.
Early 2020, in January, Dusengimana and his brother Nsengimana opened a shop near their MTN service box.
Their shop sells different products, from clothes, oils and cosmetics, face masks, and many other daily applying products.
Dusengimana says the capital to start this shop was all developed from the service agency box and it has always been the source of their market since it’s when they got most of their clients.
Even with COVID-19 lockdown, Dusengimana says their new shop was hardly affected, but the number of their clients has decreased since people remained in their homes to prevent the spread of the virus.
And they still face some of the impacts which come as a result of some of their clients being unemployed now that they don’t purchase from them anymore.
But fortunately, Dusengimana says their service agency box remained in operation and their business is still supported by the earnings of the past.
He adds that having small capital is not the reason you should not start something.
“I started with a very small business, with almost no capital, today I pay school tuition for my young brother, and we provide for ourselves every day. We also have a number of orphans we help; all of this is a result of believing in ourselves and working hard,” Dusengimana narrates.
Despite the location of their business at the main road that attracts clients, Dusengimana says he takes time to do marketing to some of the clients and telling them about the additional services of their business in order to increase their market.
Dusengimana says his business growth shows signs of future success and they are ready to work hard and become bigger than they are today.