Why I started business at 11, by 14-yr-old Kamilah
When did you start your agriculture business? I started Kamilah Farms Nigeria Limited in 2017 and we produce Zobo powder with six different flavours (Zobo with Beetroot, Zobo with Cloves and Ginger, Zobo with Ginger, Zobo with Cinnamon, Zobo with Turmeric, Zobo with Cinnamon, Cloves and Ginger and Zobo without spice, spices (Daddawa; Locust Bean, Garlic, Ginger and Pepper; Yaji) all these products are in powdered form for easy use and Shea butter (with coconut oil and ordinary Shea butter).
As a younger child three years ago, how did you raise the fund?
I started the business with a capital of between N15,000 and N20,000. I learnt the business from experiments that were carried out at home.
It was difficult but we made it. When I started I thought about what would go into the market and sell very well and also easy to use. Zobo is a common household drink in almost every home so when I started the first thing that came to my head was Zobo which is an agricultural product, so I decided to give it a try by doing something no one has ever done to make my product come out unique and different.
How many people have you engaged in your business?
So far, the farm has employed nine persons on full time basis and part-time staff. It is expanding and would be employing more once we get the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and
Kamilah Ahmed, 14 is the founder of Kamilah Farms Nigeria Limited. She recently won half a million naira grant from the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN) to support her business. In this encounter with YOUTHVILLE, the SS1 student of Nigerian Tulip International College, from Adamawa State, explained how she started her business and the prospects.
Control (NAFDAC) numbers for the spices and shea butter products. We will need to employ as many as say 100 people across the country for marketing and distributorship.
The business recently won a grant from SMEDAN, how do you feel about this?
My business participated in an event organized by SMEDAN that was very educational and interesting. And during that seminar my product emerged the best and that was how I got the grant of N500,000. I think what made us win is the fact that our product was unique and the product packaging was outstanding.
I am happy that I got the grant because I will use it to expand my business. I feel overjoyed knowing that this grant can help me do a lot of things in terms of the business expansion.
What other benefits has this brought to you?
I was also made a mentee by the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) during the product launch in March 2020. The President of the Chamber, Prince Adetokunbo Kayode, and other management staff of the Chamber approved that the Chambers should nominate me as a Mentee under the BEST (Business Entrepreneurship
Skills and Technology) Centre and promised to give me all the support I will need with other young children that want to be entrepreneurs. That also boosted my confidence.
Being a child and a strong entrepreneurial advocate, what is your advice to other children and youths?
I urge kids to think beyond the classroom, especially during the holidays. We should think of good ways of putting our talents to use but we cannot make it without the support of our parents. I am getting all the support that I need and I will encourage parents to do the same for their children.