by Kirsten Eldridge, Jolkona Volunteer
Our 16 social entrepreneurs in the Jolkona Catalyst program, a three-week mentor driven accelerator for founders from developing countries, will come from Bangladesh and Indonesia to Seattle next month. This three-week intensive program will allow them to further hone their business plans, learn how to tell their story, and gain new insights. We can’t wait to welcome them to our offices on October 25th!
Today’s feature is Armin Khan, Founder of ZappyUp, an e-commerce platform that connects skilled women who provide beauty and wellness services to customers. ZappyUp seeks to empower women to be successful entrepreneurs by making it easy for customers to book appointments with them for beauty and wellness services.
You can also register for our Jolkona Catalyst Showcase on November 11th in the beautiful, new Galvanize co-working space in historic Pioneer Square. Click here to RSVP!
Outside of this project and work, what else do you do for fun in your home country? What other passions do you have?
I am an avid traveler and writer. I have trekked to several mountains, in home and abroad, and came back alive to write about them in my blog sleepydoodles.com. Apart from that, I love cooking, dancing and having a good time with the few special people in my life.
What inspired you to start this venture?
Indigenous girls: their life stories and their tenacity.
What is obstacle you have faced in running your social business? How did you overcome this obstacle?
Making people understand the concept of the business: booking service and ecommerce in the personal services industry is a completely new concept in Bangladesh, and it’s quite challenging to make people understand the purpose behind such a business
To overcome this: we understand that the market and the target customer for this industry are not yet ready for a service as such, as hence we are building this market on the ground, taking one step at a time. We are firstly making people aware of the possibilities, potential and need for such a business, and later, when the demand is created, we will offer them the full-fledged booking service.
What are you looking forward to when you come to the United States for the Jolkona Catalyst program?
Opportunities to network, collaborate with and learn from a wonderful group of people willing to risk everything to contribute to a better world.