I still need modern machines for farming and also if I can get trainings on marketing and packaging I would really appreciate. I also need capital to expand my business, I don’t have enough fingerling.
What did Abdillah Salum do before he became a fish farmer?
Prior to starting his fish farming businesses in 2010, Abdillah ran a hardware shop that sold construction materials. On top of that, he also does salt farming and even worked as an agent with a company called Sanaa Export on a part time basis. He knew that to support his family, including three young boys, he had to work hard and be creative.
Why did he decide to get involved in the fish farming business?
“Before starting fish farming, I had a retail shop selling construction materials. The shop still runs, but I am no longer involved. Then in 2005 I started salt farming, which I still do. I was always interested in running businesses, so even before this as a crop exporter selling cashew nuts, sesame and other crops,” said Abdillah.
What steps did he take to start up his business?
He saved the money he made from his export job to use as capital for his fish farming business. The first thing he did was build the outside fence, then the inside fence and finally he built ponds.
What was it like in the beginning?
“In the beginning it was difficult because of thieves,” he said. “Also, my starting capital was small, and I didn’t have enough skills and knowledge of the business, so I made some mistakes.”
What challenges does he still face?
Abdillah doesn’t have access to modern faming equipment and given that his access to capital is limited, this makes it very difficult to improve things. He also doesn’t have good grasp on marketing and packaging his product for resale.
What help do you need to advance your business?
“My research shows this business can help me because first it’s a progressive business; it’s not something that can lose its value after a certain period of time. People eat fish all the time and use salt all the time. This business can be done with the whole family from my children to grandchildren so it will not be hard to provide for my family since I have something that can give us income for as long as we can maintain it, compared to other businesses which have a high risk of not working out.”