A loan of $525 helped buy raw materials and ingredients for his pastry-making business.

Jaime Alonso's story

Jaime Alonso R. Gravito is 46 years old and lives in the Recreo neighborhood in the city of Barranquilla. His business is the production of snacks and pastries.

He started his career as a soccer coach, but he lost his job and needed to earn some income, so he started a bakery (just selling bread) with his savings and took a course at the Sena School to learn this trade. This business was not going well – he has some problems with liquidity – so he sought advice from the Sena School and signed up for a class on pastries. He has been selling pastries for 5 years, and this business now allows him to earn a living; he continues to expand his diverse product line. At first he was very nervous, because his family doubted the success of the business, but he received a lot of support anyway. With this business, he has been able to improve his family's quality of life. He currently has a large, independent shop and he also caters at reception halls.

While running this business, he also offers consulting services and technical courses on pastry-making to small businesses or entrepreneurs who would like to learn these skills. His greatest challenge is that he does not have enough working capital to expand his operations and commercialize his products within the corporate sector. With this goal, he is seeking a loan of $1,000,000 (Columbian) in order to buy a larger inventory of ingredients and raw materials. His dream is to have a gourmet-style restaurant, but still faces this great challenge of insufficient working capital to expand. He is very happy to have been chosen to participate in the Desarrollo Productivo (DIP) program because of the quality of its loan products.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Julia Kastner

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