Sobhieh owns a small shop where she bakes “markouk,” a traditional Lebanese flatbread. Markouk is a type of thin bread that is baked on a domed or convex metal griddle known as a "saj." It is usually large, about 2 feet long, and thin. Similar to the procedures for making other flatbreads, the dough of saj bread is flattened and kept very thin prior to cooking, resulting in a very slender depth to this bread.
She has requested a loan of $1000 from Al Majmoua to purchase merchandise for cooking her bread. She also needs the loan to help her family expenses.
Sobhieh is known for her good quality bread and her low prices. Actually, she is the cheapest in her area. Her shop is well-positioned, because her clients are her neighbors and students, and she is near a school.
When she first started her business, she faced some difficulties because there was a lot of competition between her and other producers of markouk. The competition didn’t allow her to sell as much markouk as she expected, but now she found the solution by lowering her prices.
Sobhieh is an active woman. She started her business after her husband's death so that she can support her family and make a living.
About Al Majmoua – Lebanese Association for DevelopmentThe Lebanese Association for Development – Al Majmoua is Lebanon’s leading microfinance institution and the oldest Kiva partner in Lebanon. Al Majmoua’s vision is to “be the leader in creating an inclusive financial system where all people in Lebanon have access to affordable services.” Given Lebanon's diverse population, Al Majmoua lends to all nationalities, provided legal residency. The strong financial position achieved to date has allowed Al Majmoua to steadily lower its pricing over the years.
Based on the belief that non-financial services play a complementary role in improving the quality of life of the most vulnerable entrepreneurs, Al Majmoua has established a solid Business Development Services program for both borrowers and non-borrowers with a focus on women and youth.
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