A loan of $650 helped to buy shoes, sandals and flip-flops in greater volumes.

Maria's story

Maria, 56 years old, has a business in the center of the city of Barranquilla in a predominantly commercial area. In her store she sells sport and casual lines of shoes for women, men and children. The business was born 35 years ago when, over a period of 22 years, she traveled to Maicao, a city on the border of the country, to buy varied merchandise that she distributed among the merchants in market stalls. When she acquired good experience with her own effort, she bought a market stall and set up to sell in a fixed location, which is where she is currently located. The main items that she offers are sandals, flip-flops and sports shoes that she sells for cash, from 8:30 in the morning until 6:00 in the afternoon. Her customers are passersby and informal merchants of the area that buy from her on credit and with cash.

The high peaks of sales in her business occur during the second half of the year, especially in the final quarter. It is precisely in this period that her working capital becomes insufficient to respond to the high demand that her products have in her business. This is the reason why she turns to a Kiva loan, her first financing from Fundación Mario Santo Domingo, with which she will buy in greater volumes footwear, sandals and flip-flops. With these she will stock her business and respond to the customers that have already ordered with her.

Her goal is to expand her business, acquiring another well-located sales location and her greatest challenge is that her working capital is not sufficient to achieve the goal in the short term but step by step she, with work, will manage to reach it.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Melanie Snellings

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