Shahjees

Three female entrepreneurs used funding from Start Up Loans to launch an Indian restaurant and takeaway in Nottingham. Farzana Ali Choudhry, Kiran Hassan and Mariam Siddiqua secured £39,750 through First Enterprise – Enterprise Loans, enabling them to launch Shahjees, which specialises in a range of Indian dishes, including Chaat – a type of savoury snack.

The three friends used the funding for refurbishments, progressing a kitchen fit-out, while also purchasing furniture, marketing and signage. The company is now in its fifth year of trading.

“Starting a business can be daunting and takes a lot of hard work in the best of times, but even more so in the uncertain situation we find ourselves in now, especially for the hospitality sector. On the other hand, we found an opportunity in the Nottingham market for speciality Asian dishes, so along with my other two female business partners, we decided to take a calculated leap of faith to capitalise on this gap in the market, which so far seems to be paying off.

None of this would have been possible without the funding which we are extremely grateful for to have secured from Start Up Loans through First Enterprise. The expert advice we received from First Enterprise’s adviser, Suhail, proved to be invaluable as we felt supported and well informed throughout the whole process from start to finish.”

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