Meet the Women

Meet Lucy [2:51]

Lucy

Nairobi, Kenya

Profession
Manufacturing Paper Products
Business
Palmy Enterprises
Country
Kenya
partner school
United States International University – Africa
I’m proud that I’m able to create employment for our youth and our women. Now I’m working with other mothers and mentoring them on how to start their small businesses.

Business Overview

Since 2006, Palmy Enterprises has been manufacturing paper products, including napkins, kitchen towels and toilet tissue paper. I am one of the only African women in Kenya who manufactures these types of products. All our products are made here in Nairobi.  

Challenges

Before 10,000 Women, my biggest challenge was confidence - even my family was pessimistic. I also struggled to access the capital I needed to accept larger orders and expand my business.  

Results

The 10,000 Women program gave me the foundation to address all my challenges. Before the program, I was the sweeper, the messenger and the accountant, and I was performing each haphazardly. 10,000 Women taught me how to better manage and train my employees.

Most importantly, 10,000 Women increased my confidence to seek capital. During the program, I developed a proper business plan, which enabled me to qualify for loans. Recently, I was able to receive a loan as a result of an initiative between 10,000 Women and International Finance Corporation, whose mission is to expand access to capital for women entrepreneurs. I’ve been able to purchase new equipment, increase my production capacity to meet growing demand and hire more employees.
 
We’ve also moved into a larger, more advanced factory and have launched several new product lines. My revenue has increased nine-fold and I now have 50% more employees. We sell all over Kenya and are hoping to expand into other countries in East Africa. 

I am passionate about helping other women become economically empowered. I founded an organization that helps to mentor women, Magnet Mothers. This organization partners with aspiring and established entrepreneurs so that more women can hopefully achieve their own success.

Future Goals

I have plans to continue to launch new product lines, including hand soaps and shampoos. My dream is for Palmy products to be in every home in Africa, and to become a household name. 

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