Total loan: $14,300
B’enam & Co
Guatemala, Guatemala, Guatemala / Arts
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A loan helped to increase production of fair-wage, ecological textiles.
B’enam & Co's story
The Social Enterprise: B'enam & Co is a Guatemalan social enterprise founded in 2015 that designs and produces handmade reusable products. B'enam means "travel" in the local Mayan dialect of Kakchiquel. The Problem: Aware that the artisan textile industry in Guatemala impacts more than 1 million Guatemalans, who don't earn even minimum wage for their work, B'enam's team decided to start and create a sustainable ecosystem of accessories. The Loan: B'enam will use their loan to increase the production of their reusable bags, which are made with cotton and thus reduce the use of plastic. This loan will allow them to access the necessary inputs to attain a sustainable level of production and achieve economies of scale that ensure work and the payment of a fair wage for their artisans in western Guatemala (400% more than they used to earn) who make the ecologically woven fabric on standing looms. In addition, they will be able to purchase two industrial sewing machines that will allow their team in Guatemala City to make the artisan process of product manufacturing more efficient and that will result in improved profits for the small but growing enterprise.