He got another chance to work for former employer for six months, during which time he marketed himself as a professional software expert.
The biggest challenge was getting business as a start-up, he said, adding that former employer had informed his clients he had left, “making it a bit hard getting business on my own.’’
Then, one day, one of the clients called and offered an opportunity to compile reports. He would earn Sh20,000 while freelance jobs raised his income to Sh80,000 monthly.
This enabled him to set up a website. A deal that looked good almost killed the business. A multinational company was looking for a supplier to install a software but his company did make the short-list due to limited experience.
“But the ambition was bigger,’’ he said, adding that he sought to work in partnership with a big firm in the deal for a commission. He never got paid Sh1.5 million for the work in a web of debt. “I became the sacrificial lamb and all my earnings were used to settle the arrears,’’ he said.
But he used the difficult times to scale the heights of entrepreneurship. His “turning point” came when Sage International appointed him as their authorised partner in Kenya in 2009.
Quality and credibility
Today, he makes more than Sh10 million per month. Some of his clients have included EABL, AAR, Catholic University, Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (Kephis), Express Kenya, and Crowne Plaza.
“We advise customers on business process management where we identify the needs and implement.’’ For a lesson, he says that “I have learnt to appreciate passion, the drive, and patience.’’
His firm has satellite presence in Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda and is now targeting South Sudan early next year. He employs over 20 people and runs a foundation that pays school fees for needy children in his rural home.
“My upbringing was humbling and I pay the school fees for the poor children from secondary to university. We have seven beneficiaries of the fees programme.’’ Mr Raymond Cheruiyot says he works smart and believes in quality and credibility.
This feature on entrepreneur Raymond Cheruiyot was first published by Business Daily.