Education is important but it is not a pre-requisite to success. This success story speaks for the motion. A story of a man whose education was hindered due to financial constraints of his family, who later started selling biryani on a loan with a nominal amount of just four thousand rupees. However, his confidence and passion for cooking encouraged him to start and turn his business into an empire.
Aasife Ahmed, born in a middle-class family in Pallavaran, Chennai, was struggling with bad economic conditions since his early days. The situation of his family worsened after his father was suspended from his job. To fulfill the needs of his family, Asif started working at the age of a mere 12 years. He delivered newspapers and sold old books to support the financial crisis of his family.
Intending to earn money, he started experimenting with new businesses, like at the age of 14, he started a leather shoe business which was a success initially and made him earn ₹1 lakh in profits. Unfortunately, the leather industry was disrupted after a few months and Asif’s business came to a standstill and he was forced to shut shop.
This was the time when Aasife’s passion for cooking, which he had since childhood, kicked in. However, in the beginning, instead of starting his own business, he joined a Biryani specialist as an assistant and helped him prepare the meal at weddings and other local events. Money was not good enough.
He quit. An agent assured him to get a job in Mumbai for ₹35 thousand. When Asif reached Mumbai, he realized that he has been conned by the agent. He returned to Chennai after being deceived.
After all the struggle, he finally decided to pursue his cooking passion as a career. He purchased a cart to sell biryani with his bank savings of ₹4,000. He would prepare biryani at home every day and sell it through his car. Soon enough, people started liking the taste and within three months, his daily sales crossed 10-15 kg. Within a few months, he started earning a lot from his business.
In 2002, he rented a small shop and named it ‘Aasife Biryani’. In just three years, he opened a large 1,500 sq. ft. outlet and hired 30 people. With the help of a bank loan, he opened eight more restaurants. As of now, the turnover of Asif Biryani Private Limited stands at ₹40 crores.
Asif is an example for all medium and small scale entrepreneurs. The way he learned from the ups and downs of his life is peculiar and worth-noticing.