Here we go on episode 7 with a famous snack that literally leaves you finger licking! We're talking about the renown fluffy chin-chin, even fluffier when it's Nkechi's chin-chin!
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In Nigeria and most African countries, chin-chin is bae - so snacky & foody at the same time, little wonder this article is dedicated to the lady making it easier for people to get a premium version with no stress.
TSWi: Our readers are multinationals, could you please tell us what flournuts are?
Nkechi: Flournuts chinchin is a Nigerian snack made with wheat flour, margarine, eggs and deep fried in vegetable oil or baked..
TSWi: Where is it’s origin and is there a local name for it?
Nkechi: It originated from Nigeria and the original name is CHINCHIN.
TSWi: Why flournuts?
Nkechi: Flournuts chinchin because not many people were making chinchin in large quantities before I started, and clients were usually at the mercy of the few people that made it. This is because making chinchin is time consuming and very stressful, it makes you stand for hours kneading, cutting, then frying.
TSWi: How did you start?
Nkechi: I started from my Kitchen…lol.
TSWi: Was there ever a time this felt wrong? If yes, how did you overcome that feeling & kept pushing on?
Nkechi: Of course….especially at the beginning….I felt making and selling chinchin was "beneath" me….I wanted to work in one of the many oil companies……lol….But as more people consumed my product, and kept coming back for more, I knew I had to take my business of selling chinchin more seriously. Especially after I had clients waiting for me for almost 9months when I was pregnant so they can place their orders for chinchin, because I could not take orders during pregnancy.
"...I started from my kitchen...."
Gurl! That's inspiring! Got us all:
TSWi: Do you have a minimum or maximum order?
Nkechi: My minimum order is N200 worth of chinchin & I don’t have a maximum limit. We work with machines now….so if clients place their orders on time, they can get as much as they want whenever & wherever they want it.
TSWi: We saw some personalized versions of your product and think it’s a nice way to
differentiate & add value, are there other ways you delight your customers?
Nkechi: Personalized versions of our chinchin is one of the many ways we delight our customers. During the festive seasons, we usually make hampers with chinchin and other yummies in the hampers. We are currently also putting finishing touches on our various chinchin variants which will be out soonest.
TSWi: Looking back to when you started, what is the one step you wish you took before or right after you started?
Nkechi: I wish I started taking & documenting the financial records of my business as soon as I started. The importance of book keeping for a business whether small or big cannot be over emphasized.
TSWi: Where is your market and what are the logistics involved?
Nkechi: Our chinchin is stocked in all Shoprite Stores in Nigeria, Market Square stores in Portharcourt, Yenagoa and Uyo. As well as Neighbourhood stores in Portharcourt. And we also do home and cross country deliveries using our Logistics partner, God is Good Logistics.
TSWi: What would you do if you got a million dollar gift today?
Nkechi: I would get a bigger space, more chinchin making machines, more staff and scale to a point of producing 1 million packs of chinchin monthly. I would put some part into advertising (both traditional and new media adverts) and dominate the chinchin industry in Nigeria.
TSWi: How do you deal with/stay ahead of duplicates?
Nkechi: I just keep doing what my vision for my business is. And I also DON’T compromise the process of our chinchin making, because it is our Unique Selling Point(USP).
TSWi: What is/are the biggest obstacle(s) you’ve encountered yet as a flournuts entrepreneur
and how did you overcome it/them?
Nkechi: There are a thousand and one…..lol…..a very prominent challenge was scaling. When I was to transition from my kitchen to our 50% mechanized factory, the use of machines changed the taste of our chinchin, and as stated earlier, our taste is our USP. I had to tweak the recipe I'd always used, and this was not an easy one…..it took almost 3 weeks to get another banger recipe for the machines. Somedays, I cried, prayed before I finally nailed it….lol. All this time, I lost days of work, large amounts of raw materials and customers as I couldn’t get the right recipe using machines.
TSWi: What is a typical weekend like for Nkechi?
Nkechi: I try to rest on Saturdays….emphasis on "try"…lol….maybe sleep in, watch a movie, attend a function (rarely though, because I’m an introvert…lol)….Then for Sundays, I never miss my church service except I’m out of town, then I try to also visit family. On Sundays, I do not work at all. In fact, I toss my phone and do not check my emails…lol.
TSWi: What is your impression of TSWi?
Nkechi: TWSi is an initiative that is very much interested in empowering the female gender.
TSWi: What advise would you give small business owners in the food industry?
Nkechi: Get a dedicated amazing recipe for your food, snack or product and stick with it. Don’t reduce your quality for any reason at all, instead increase your prices. People love good quality food and would always go for quality over quantity. And keep showing up, keep pushing, be consistent..
TSWi: If there was one admirable person you could spend the day with for free, who would that be?
Nkechi: Mrs Folorusho Alakija.
TSWi: What is your most desirous place to visit?
TSWi: Which is so you - stilettoes, flats, wedges, depends, none or all?
Nkechi: It depends….and you didn’t add sneakers….lol.
Nkechi Taribo-Joseph is the CEO of Africa’s No. 1 Premium Chin Chin Brand; FLOURNUTS CHINCHIN.
She started this business from her kitchen 4years ago & now currently produces from a 50% mechanized NAFDAC Certified factory.
She distributes across 50 superstores & neighbourhood stores in Nigeria and has customers in the UK, US and Canada.
She is married to the Emotional Masseur, Taribo Joseph and they are blessed with two amazing children; Adiel and Alizah.
Are you a female business owner/manager?....Maybe not, do you know one? Don't you think they deserve this kind of attention? It's real easy to get them on our list, comment on this post or reach out to us via email or social media & boom-chaka-laka! We'd reach out to them and schedule the chat.