How Kenyan Youth Built Ksh500 Million Empire With Ksh40K Helb Loan

Over the years, Kenyan students have heavily relied on the loans provided by the government’s Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) to cover tuition and make essential purchases while attending college.

For Moses Muriithi Kihunii, then an engineering student at Kenyatta University, the loan provided him with a chance to venture into business and exploit different markets. 

A choice that not only increased his income but also gave him the opportunity to start a real estate company and offer jobs to other young Kenyans.

The CEO at Fanaka Real Estate, located in Ruai graduated, with a BSc in Mechanical Engineering in 2013. However, prior to his graduation, Muriithi understood that the job market would be flooded by thousands of graduates and thus resorted to self-employment. 

The businessman balanced his academic obligations with his newfound venture by using his HELB loan to pay for an online writing account that cost close to Ksh40,000.

 “I knew from the start I would want to be self-employed, that’s why I focused on raising my startup capital while at the campus. I saved some funds from my HELB loans and acquired an online account. 

“I made strides and recurred some of the money but suffered a major loss when the account was deactivated over some technical issues. This did not deter me as I was determined to make it. I saved again and bought another writing account,” he told Kenyans.co.ke.

The second account proved a success and from the profits accrued, Muriithi ventured into real estate by purchasing plots and later selling them at a profit. 

“I worked with online accounts for a period of three years between 2012- 2015. I set goals and listed what I wanted to do with the funds. I decided to purchase two or three parcels of land each year,” he added. 

After graduation, the entrepreneur had several plots in prime areas within the Nairobi metropolis. He then decided to register a company, Fanaka Real Estate in 2015

“Our company has successfully aided clients to purchase prime plots as we are customer-oriented. We also ensure that all legal aspects are adhered to. 

“Many clients occasionally avoid investing because they are suspicious of the fraudsters’ syndicates and schemes. I worked hard to establish a reputation for my business, which has grown over time as a result of recommendations and the caliber of our work. Before making a commitment, Fanaka always advises clients to perform searches at the land offices.

“The integrity aspect has boosted our name as we ensure that all our parcels are legal, have ready titles and are in areas suitable for immediate development,” he added. 

The CEO also worked towards working directly with landowners than brokers who hike land prices. 

“My advice to young entrepreneurs is to keep working hard, be dedicated, remain focused on their goals and with time they will bear the fruit,” Muriithi advised.  

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