In this SMEs article, we’ll share with you how the lively Odedina Abimbola Ifeoluwa started Crytalz Dry Cleaning Services and grew it within a year to become an employer of labour.
Possibly, Ifeoluwa must have come across the evergreen quote of William Shakespeare that says, “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon ’em”.
Hey, get the fact straight: She isn’t one of those ladies born with silver spoon in their mouth. She’s poised for success and would not let go irrespective of the challenges.
While her fellow corps members were worried about what the future holds after their one year mandatory service year , energetic Ifeoluwa gathered the little she could to learn and start a laundry business in Ibadan, Oyo State, where was serving.
She had a breakthrough!
Born December 23 into the Odedina family of Ijebu-Ode Ogun state, she was raised by her Mum since she lost her dad a decade ago.
Her Mum struggled day and night selling foodstuff and charcoal at a market in Ikeja, the city of Lagos to ensure her children’s success.
“For me, growing up was a very challenging experience, myself, my mother and my younger sister Adepeju had to take refuge in a room and parlour apartment in the ancestral home of our maternal grandfather in Ikeja,” she says.
In a chat with InfomediaNG, Ife said she was determined to do what it takes to change her family’s fortune.
“Immediately after Secondary school, I started taking up several jobs to assist my mother to fend for the family and saving towards sponsoring myself to the university.”
Her struggle paid off as she gained admission into Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba, Akoko to study Business Administration in 2012.
“While in school I made several trips to Lagos to do promotional ushering jobs during weekends and I took up part time jobs every semester break working as a sales representative and eventually graduating with honours”
While awaiting for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to post her, she engaged herself in part time jobs, saved some money to start a charcoal business, “having learnt the trade from my mother, I started selling in small and large units to food vendors, restaurants around Ikeja axis. But eventually had to quit the trade due to constant pressure to join Charcoal dealers pressure group.”
Her service year
In November 2017, Ifelouwa was posted to Adamawa state for the mandatory NYSC scheme, where she spent three weeks in camp for the orientation exercise and eventually redeployed to Ibadan, Oyo state due to insecurity in the North.
“As a Corps member in Ibadan I was posted to a secondary school where I was to resume 8am and close by 2pm, I decided to look for another part-time job to raise extra money for my upkeep and increase my savings.”
That attempt paid off again as she was fortunate to get a sales activation job with British American Tobacco, Ibadan sales unit.
“There I was required to work between 5pm to 10pm on Tuesday’s to Thursday, 5pm till 2am during the weekends. Though stressful, the pay was good and I was able to save the BAT salary towards starting a business.”
What next after BAT internship job?
According to her, “Eventually, the 3month contract with BAT ended and I had to make a decision on what business to do.”
That’s when she decided to start a start a laundry business after seeking God’s divine direction.
“Thereafter, I had to seek wise counsel from friends and I was directed to see a young man (Mr. Falade Ayomipo Oluwaseun) who also owned a laundry service in Ibadan. I was told he also started as a Corps member and he was willing to teach me how to start and manage a laundry and dry cleaning shop at an affordable fee.”
Ifeoluwa acquired the needed laundry skills within 3weeks while her PPA was on break, “few days later with the assistance of my Boss, I used all my savings to buy a washing machine, generator, industrial iron and other materials, equipment and items needed to start a Laundry and Dry Cleaning service.”
With courage and determination she started her own Laundry business on May 10, 2018, got to wash15 shirts, seven trousers and some under wears.
Excited Ifeoluwa said, “Today I’m a proud owner of a booming Laundry business (Crytalz Exclusive Cleaning Services).
She didn’t stop there, she went ahead to get her business registered with Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
Success story as the CEO of Crytalz Dry Cleaning Services
She was doing the washing, ironing, packaging and delivery herself when her business took off, but within a few months, she was financially buoyant and guess what?
She employed two pressers, a washerwoman and a delivery man (four in all) while she oversees the administration and management.
“On the long run I intend to engage in large scale laundry and dry cleaning service and also perform Janitorial services. Indeed God has been good to me,” she said.
Why she decided to stay in Ibadan
When we asked her why she decided to stay in Ibadan after her service year, she said, “I was motivated to stay in Ibadan based on the uniqueness of the city when compared to Lagos. The cost of living here is relatively low and there are several opportunities for any serious minded entrepreneur”
Challenges so far
I’m currently experiencing challenge with collecting and delivering valued garments from and to my customers. I use a motorcycle rider. I hope to get a Car or at least a proper delivery motorcycle but the fund is not available for now
Advice for Federal Government on NYSC
I’ll advise the government to decentralize disbursement of loans, grants to enterprising corps members and ensure more is done to have stable power supply. Most businesses need power to survive.
While some folks use Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms for fun, the CEO of Crytalz Exclusive Cleaning Services says social media has helped in expanding her customer base.
Want to learn the rudiment of laundry services within two to three weeks?
Crytalz Exclusive Cleaning Services can be contacted on the following:
- WhatsApp: 08121562044
- Call: 08133724725
- Instagram: @crystalzlaundry
- Twitter: @CrystalzLaundry
Do you also have a small business you want to push before thousands of prospective customers? Reach us at InfomediaNG.We’re always excited about sharing success stories of SMEs owners