From mobile money to rental houses: Ssentongo is realizing his dream of being financially independent

In April 2019, Semastian Ssentongo, 23, decided to make a vow.

He did not want to be employed by anyone. He wanted to be self-employed.

So, he set off on this journey by establishing a mobile money service outlet in Bulenga, Nakuwadde.

“I was idle and I used to admire people who earned daily, I wanted to be self-employed because I tried to look for a job and I failed. I had to find a way out,” he said.

Ssentongo started his mobile money business with only Shs 300,000 and out of this, he bought the Airtel line at Shs 250000 from someone and remained with Shs 50,000 which he used as a float.

 “Young people, this is our generation, but we should know that things are not always easy,” he says, adding that he was inspired by a number of things.

 “I started with Airtel and those who came with MTN I could only promise them. I had no money and that is why I used shs50, 000 for the float because that was the only money I had at that moment. This was only possible because I was determined,” he explains.

Ssentongo spent three months using one line but when his customer base grew bigger, he bought an MTN line.

Ssentongo’s business was 2km away from the main trading centre but this didn’t stop him from carrying on amidst tough times.

Before choosing the location where he is operating right now, Ssentongo considered several factors including transport costs, rent, food and other things, which were essential.

 Luckily, Ssentongo’s business started to pick up and he was able to generate some money that helped him to buy a new motorcycle for Shs 4.5 million which he considers as one of his biggest achievements.

 “After six months, I reached an extent where monthly I could get Shs 500,000. So I got the idea of buying a motorcycle. The money I used to buy this motorcycle was from this mobile money business,” he said.

He said that at the peak of Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 as the business continued to grow, he got the idea to build rental houses as one of the strategies to diversify his business.

“I started building slowly by slowly because I didn’t have much money to do everything at once but the little money I could get I could inject it in the construction project,” he said.

From the mobile money business and the houses, Ssentongo gets more than Shs 1 million a month, although he was coy about the exact amount.

Advise to young people

He advised young people to always be creative other than waiting for white collar jobs

 “Young people should be flexible according to the available circumstances. We should not be beggars all the time. Let’s think beyond getting white collar jobs. Let us be job creators and I know young people can do it,” he says.

 Ssentongo now employs more than three people with different branches of his businesses across the area of Busega, Mpaawo among others. “I always tell young people to be focused. I have inspired young people to start small businesses in the area, so I think I have done well inspiring young people,” he s

Related Articles

Back to top button