Afshon Wallace Ngige is a young Kenyan entrepreneur and tech enthusiast who is the founder and CEO of AfriDelivery. He answered a few questions about himself to let us in a little on his life while giving us a few pointers about the business too. Here’s what he had to say;
1.) Why did you decide to start your own business?
I’ve always been entrepreneurial and AfriDelivery is a way of giving back to the community by creating employment. It was also a good way for me to experiment with my creativity, thoughts & ideas and make them come to fruition
2.) How did you get started?
I’ve been running businesses for 10 years now. I’ve run so many businesses, 8 of which were critical failures. My first business was an online clothing store, buying and selling clothes to my friends back in university. Then I ran a tattoo parlour, a music school and a lot other different business after that. My first tech business was a taxi-hailing app which didn’t work well because it proved to be expensive to run & the market didn’t receive the product as well as expected.
3.) Why food delivery?
After the taxi-hailing business, I took time to study and understand both the tech & food delivery industries. Food is a fast moving good, you’ll never go wrong because people will always want to eat. I then looked for a market that didn’t have a service that was as efficient as I wanted AfriDelivery to be and decided to start the business in Zambia.
4.) How did you convince investors of your concept?
I didn’t have to convince any investors because the business was self-funded. I put all my resources together and with a bit of help from family and friends I just started with what I had.
5.) What was the biggest challenge you faced and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge was convincing restaurant owners to partner with AfriDelivery. At that time there had been a few delivery companies that some of these owners had worked with & that didn’t work out so well for them so they were hesitant about getting on board.
To overcome that challenge we were consistent in delivering our promises and giving customers an excellent service. Eventually, people warmed up to the idea and now we have more than 250 restaurants on the platform.
6.) What ‘ingredients’ would you say are needed to successfully start a business?
The first and most important one is definitely consistency. You have to be consistent with your service from the start because it’s consistency that will retain your customers.
Another thing is to have faith in yourself. Believe in yourself, jump as high as you can go. Take calculated risks and just stretch as far as your business can go. Don’t limit yourself.
7.) What does being part of a brand like AfriDelivery look like?
The greatest part about this is being able to see what was once just an idea come to life. Being able to see what was once a small thing become a successful brand that now hires a large number of locals. You get to be part of something that’s really consistent in terms of growth and big and that’s very fulfilling.
8.) What’s special about Zambia’s food?
What I love about Zambia is the wide variety of local foods. I’ve noticed that Zambians add a lot more effort to preparing their food and that makes it pretty amazing. Africa as a whole has good food but Zambian food has a great taste that I’ve never experienced elsewhere.
9.) Any Plans for entering new towns? Which ones?
We’re definitely planning on entering two new markets in the last quarter of this year. We’re currently looking at Ndola & Kitwe, once we have researched enough and have our resources ready we’ll be ready to start operations there.
10.) Where do you see the brand in 10 years?
I can tell you that in two years this will be the biggest brand in the food delivery industry. The goal is to cover the whole country in two years. In 5 years we plan on entering three new countries that I can’t discuss right now but you can count on that.