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Monday, June 24, 2024
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Kenyan-Born Entrepreneur Who Built A Successful Business in Canada

Kenyan-Born Entrepreneur Who Built A Successful Business in Canada
Kenyan-Born Entrepreneur Who Built A Successful Business in Canada. PHOTO/COURTESY

The inspiring story of the Kenyan Diaspora Man Don Mathias Mumassabba who buit a successful business in Canada.

Every so often, you will meet a Kenyan seeking greener pastures abroad. High unemployment rates and tough living conditions are forcing Kenyans to search for job opportunities in the Middle East, Europe and the US.

Business Daily Life spoke to Don Mathias Mumassabba who moved to Canada with his family when he was young, growing up in Toronto, Ontario. He talks about his journey into entrepreneurship.

The Kenyan-born entrepreneur has built businesses in a foreign country and unravelled how fostering trust and relationships in the new environment was challenging.

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‘’The challenges of running a business in Canada, especially as an African, are multi-faceted. First, there is the cultural barrier. Understanding and adapting to the Canadian business culture was essential, as it differs from Kenyan norms,” says Mr Mumassabba.

“Secondly, establishing a network was initially difficult. In a new country, you might not have the same support system or connections that you have back home.”

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Despite being in the country since a young age, he says he had to deal with stereotypes and biases, forcing him to continuously prove his expertise and value through hard work and innovation.

This coupled with navigating the legal and regulatory landscape that was complex and high competition in his field.

“As an African entrepreneur, sometimes you might face scepticism or prejudice, which can affect opportunities and partnerships,” says the 37-year-old.

“Additionally, Canada has its own set of laws and regulations pertaining to business, and understanding and complying with these is vital. Competition is intense, especially in the fields of public relations and marketing. Staying ahead requires constant innovation, staying up-to-date with industry trends, and offering something unique to the clients.”

Mr Mumassabba established and runs Eminent Media, a public relations and communications consulting firm and also founded EMI Influencers in 2015, a digital marketing agency based in Toronto.

The EMI Influencers utilises a scheduling tool that operates as an artificial intelligence-powered platform designed to help influencers in streamlining their content strategy.

It enables users to schedule their posts on various social media channels, ensuring consistent engagement with their audience.

Mr Mumassabba adds that the multiculturalism and diversity in Canadian society have been a silver lining, helping grow the business, especially with support from clients from different backgrounds.

He now sees his African heritage as an asset, allowing him to bridge cultures and bring innovative solutions to a multicultural market.

“In the early days of my career, I faced some instances of discrimination for being an African. Over time, as I continued to establish my businesses and contribute positively to the community, I found that being in a multicultural country like Canada turned out to be an advantage.”

“There’s a growing appreciation for diverse perspectives and experiences, which are invaluable in a globalised economy. Indeed, Canada’s multicultural fabric helped in creating more inclusive business environments. I was able to overcome any discrimination but also use my unique background to connect with various communities and establish a diverse clientele.”

The digital marketing agency has grown to attract a client portfolio, including Fortune 500 companies, startups, and nonprofit organisations.

He has worked with large and small companies such as Microsoft, BELL, 7-Eleven, Canadian Tire, March of Dimes Canada and Enercare.

He has also overseen events organisations such as Vigor Awards, the Caribana Festival, Reggae Fest, Wida Fest and Plascon Colour Run and public speaking.

Most young Kenyans are moving out of the country in search of greener pastures abroad, especially for jobs with the numbers rising year on year due to the unemployment rate.

Data from the Central Bank of Kenya’s Diaspora Remittances Survey 2021 shows most of the diaspora reside in the US, representing 22.5 percent, UK (7.3 percent), United Arab Emirates (5.6 percent), Canada (4.4 percent), Australia (3.4 percent), South Africa (3.2 percent), Belgium (3.0 percent) and Germany (2.9 percent).

Nearly a third of wealthy Kenyans are also seeking a second passport or new nationality to access better investment opportunities, healthcare, and quality education overseas, according to a report by Knight Frank.

Kenya, in recent years, has also been a hunting ground for foreign firms and countries targeting skilled labour, entrepreneurship skills and high-net-worth individuals.

Some countries like Canada offer entrepreneurs incentives, including favourable taxation policies, grants, and business development initiatives.

This, coupled with access to advanced technology and resources, is what Mr Mumassabba says has boosted his business by easing the process of setting up and operations, admitting that it wasn’t an easy task.

“Maneuvering through the process of setting up a business, especially in a different country like Canada, required careful planning, hard work, and adaptability. I first had to familiarise myself with the Canadian market and legal requirements for starting a business,” he says.

Networking and building relationships with people in the industry, just like any other territory have been crucial, providing him with insights and connections to propel the company.

“Coming from Kenya, where the typical workday is eight hours, adapting to Canada’s 24/7 economy was a challenge but also an opportunity. I embraced the fact that in Canada, there’s a culture of working around the clock.”

“I took advantage of this by working three jobs in a day to accumulate the capital necessary to start my business. This was not easy, but the flexibility and opportunity that the Canadian economy offered allowed me to raise funds more quickly than I could have in a traditional eight-hour working environment.

I also prioritised building a strong team, as I believe that having the right people on board is essential for the success of any business.

Through perseverance, adaptability, and a commitment to my goals, I was able to successfully navigate the complexities of setting up a business in Canada.”

By ELIZABETH KIVUVA

Source-https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/

 

Kenyan-born Entrepreneur Who Built A Successful Business in Canada

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