A woman entrepreneur thrives despite crisis

http://www.daily-sun.com/details_ds-a-woman-entrepreneur-thrives-despite-crisis_431_1_3_1_1.html

SME Fair held in city
A woman entrepreneur thrives despite crisis

Parvin Akter, proprietor of Jenya Collection, seen at the stall at SME Fair 2011 at the city’s Bangabandhu International Conference Centre.

Anayetur Rahaman

She started a small boutique shop in a room of her house in Chittagong in 2003 with a capital of only Tk 30,000. She did not get any bank loan, rather had to borrow Tk 20,000 from an individual lender with high interest. But now her business got expanded across five districts of the country.

Parvin Akter, proprietor of Jenya Collection, said “My shops now design around 500 sarees and salwar kameezes a month.”

The woman, who opened a tiny shop in her own house by borrowing a small amount of money eight years back, is now planning to export her products.

Her boutique shop receives orders from different fashion brands and put designs on the products including sarees, salwar kameez, bed sheets and Nakshi Kantha as per the customers’ demands.

Parvin Akter said the demand of her works is growing day by day. That is why her business is not limited only in Chittagong, rather got expanded to four more districts.

Parvin Akter opened design centres in Jessore, Mymensingh, Comilla and Jamalpur. Around 500 women work in her design centres which receive orders from different brands of sarees and salwar kamizes.

“Our biggest centre is in Jessore where around 100 workers are employed,” Parvin Akter told daily sun at the SME Fair in Dhaka.

She opened a stall at the Small and Middle Enterprises (SMEs) Fair in the city’s Bangabandhu International Conference Centre with support from Chittagong Women Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CWCCI). Parvin is a member of CWCCI.

Parvin attributed her success to the integrity and hard work of her employees. She also did not forget her husband’s support without which it would have been difficult for her to go ahead. Parvin Akter said the commercial banks’ current SME loan policy is also positive for entrepreneurs like her.

“The commercial banks are now coming with different loan products for SMEs which is very positive. I recently got a loan Tk 4 million from Arab Bangladesh (AB) Bank Limited,” said the owner of Jenya Collection.

She bought a showroom for Tk 3 million at Central Plaza in Chittagong. She has other two showrooms at Agrabad and Halishahar in the port city.

While talking to daily sun, she hinted about her plan to expand business abroad. “I recently visited some countries including the United States, China, Indonesia, Malaysia and India. I talked to several buyers in those countries. I am hopeful to get orders from them.”

Parvin Akter said it is positive that the women are increasingly getting involved into businesses and opening enterprises.

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