Timothy started his timber business in November 2006, after his older brother gave him a small loan to buy timber. Previously, Timothy had been selling roasted maize (a popular snack in Kenya) on the street. He began selling maize directly after finishing secondary school and receiving his diploma. His older brother also helped him get started in this first micro-business.
Timothy started his timber business because, while he was selling maize, he noticed that people were bringing timber to Mlolongo from the forests outside Nairobi. With the small savings he had saved from his maize business, Timothy decided to go to the forests to cut wood and bring it to Mlolongo. Since he was successful at the first trial, he decided to open up a timber shop. His shop is very successful, as there are few timber shops in Mlolongo. However, Timothy still has to make frequent trips to the forests near Eldoret (about a five-hour drive from Nairobi) to split wood and bring it back to his shop. Timothy is therefore requesting a Kiva loan of US $1,175 in order to increase his inventory of timber, which would to allow him to remain at his shop without having to make too many frequent trips up-country to gather wood. He is expecting to repay the loan within nine months.
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