Personal Story I am originally from El Salvador and came to the United States in 2004 in search of a job and opportunities to help provide for my family in El Salvador. As a child, my parents couldn’t pay for school in El Salvador, so I chose to learn to tailor to contribute and help my family. I soon developed a passion for tailoring and decided I wanted to design my own clothing line someday.
Since I have been in the United States, my priority has been to learn English. Like many immigrants coming to the US, I had to work in a variety of jobs to become self-sufficient. I worked in the food and hospitality industry for 9 years at a restaurant and bar, at a pretzel shop, and later at a tailoring factory for 3 years. Meanwhile, I attended adult school at Diablo Valley College in Concord, CA to learn English and computer skills.
I soon found out about Anew America’s business incubation program and enrolled in it to learn how I could start and grow a small tailoring business. Although I recently opened my tailoring business, I have already received a lot of support and compliments from my community in Concord. Ultimately, I want to expand my business so that I can employ talented local residents and continue to support my family in El Salvador so they can prosper and pursue their dreams as well.
Gloria’s Tailoring is a start-up business that offers specialized and detailed tailoring services for clients in Concord, California. I tailor the clothing and fabrics myself and have a lot of experience in the field. My main clients are immigrants and low income families in the area. After working several years tailoring clothing at factories I decided I wanted to start my own business to further develop and practice my skill and passion for tailoring clothing. I hope to eventually have my own clothing line where I design my own clothing and tailor it to the measurements of my customers.
My biggest challenge in starting my business was financing it and maintaining a steady income to pay off bills. Since it started, I have maintained a steady income but know that I have a lot of potential to expand, since clients ask for various services that I cannot currently provide because I don’t have the machinery necessary for it.
I hope to expand my tailoring business to a full storefront location in the near future while offering jobs to people with a love for clothing and tailoring. I also hope to hire a manager to manage my current location while I expand to a storefront in Pleasant Hill.
What I enjoy most from my work is the positive response and compliments that I receive from my clients. Most of my business comes from return clients who admire and appreciate my work. When I am questioned as to why I don’t work a normal full-time job that would pay more per hour, I tell people that I believe in myself and my business. I have many dreams of achieving great things in life and I firmly believe that my skill and the development of my business will allow me to pursue and reach my dreams. I am proud of my business, what I have achieved and what I know I have the potential for achieving, in the near and distant future.
What is the purpose of this loan?
I will use my Kiva Zip loan to buy an automated embroidery machine which will allow me to expand the services I offer and efficiently work on multiple projects at once. The machine costs $5,999. I expect to fund the remaining $1,000 through savings that I am gathering now.
I have calculated that for the first 3 months, I would receive an average of 12 embroidery projects per week at $12 each project. This would leave me with a revenue of $576, and a profit of $384, once I take variable costs into account. After the first 3 months of acquiring the embroidery machine, I expect to increase my sales to an average of double my initial demand, leaving me with a revenue of $1,152 and a profit of $768 per month. These estimates would leave me with a profit of $17,280 which would be more than enough to pay off my Kiva Zip loan and allow me to expand my business.
With the success of my new embroidery service, I will use my resulting profits to hire a part-time assistant and invest in new machinery. I would also like to help my struggling family in El Salvador so that they may pursue their own entrepreneurial ambitions.