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Training Entrepreneurs in South Asia: An Update

Through a new Business Development Center (BDC) in South Asia, we’re helping train local entrepreneurs to develop and grow their own businesses. Three cohorts have completed the training so far. The tangible results from the center’s first year have been promising. Here’s a sampling of new businesses that have developed and what some of the BDC graduates are up to now.

A Chicken Farm
The winner of the cohort two business plan contest is starting a chicken farm in a village outside of the city. She is low caste and so is her husband. Never have any low caste people in this village had their own business. The low caste have always been oppressed and served the high caste. The first success for the woman was the purchase of land from high caste land owners. No low caste villagers had ever done that, either. After purchasing the land, she then began building her chicken farm. The town started talking and as a result the woman and her husband have been able to share about their faith and how they hope that this farm will impact the village significantly. We are in talks with one of our partner denominations to try and get a church-planting work in the area to come alongside the business and minister to the many people in this village.

A Goat Farm
Meanwhile, the contest winner from the first cohort is successfully implementing her goat-farming business in another village north of the city. Though she hasn't sold any goats yet, she is building an incredible infrastructure. The village has also been shocked that she has done everything—from obtaining permits to registration to hiring labor—without the typical method of paying bribes. This is a powerful testimony.

A Coconut Oil Company
A graduate of cohort two, has launched his coconut oil company. The company manufactures and bottles coconut oil in a factory in another city, and he is selling it throughout South Asia. A month or two ago he got his first major order from a distributor of about $15,000. Since then he has made a lot more deals. He hired a fellow BDC graduate to work for him (who wasn't ready to start her business yet).

A School
A woman from cohort two, launched her school this year with 30 students. She is getting ready to add 11 more. Her school is targeting the poor and she relies on donations and small fees to keep the school running. She has a wonderful vision and is eager to use this to impact the poor communities of the city for Christ.

Window Washing
A local entrepreneur from cohort one continues to grow his window washing business. He cleans the windows of five-star hotels around the city. He now has around 12 employees and is slowly adding more. Most of his employees are evangelists in the villages. The job not only enables them to support their families, but also to do ministry in the villages. The business owner is able to support his family and his ministry as well.

Leather Making
Out of cohort three came a man from another part of the country who is incredibly gifted in leather making. He is starting a business that will employ underprivileged women, train them to create leather goods, and sell to Western audiences. His business is still in the pipeline, but we can expect big things.

We’re always looking for businessmen and women willing to use their business skills on the field by serving as mentors for local entrepreneurs. For more information on MTW’s Business as Mission ministry email [email protected]

Mar 1, 2013
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