An unrestricted view of the market can increase the probability of cross-pollination of thinking across different fields. And one business that stands out is Mambo Yote Sound. An aggressive and an ever growing sound system provider and events company operating in the heart of Nairobi.
Founded in 2014 by Andy Mwangi, Mambo Yote provides Sound equipment, DJ services, MCs and stage platforms as different rate packages.
The entertainment and media industry in Kenya generated over Kshs 2 billion in 2016 and growing a rate of 8.5% over the next 5 years according to a PWC report; and sound system providers and Events Companies are the lifeline tucked behind the scenes to make live events a reality.
With the many events and sound system provider companies sprouting up every now and then, the competition in this industry has intensified but Mambo Yote has nevertheless established its own niche by providing a high quality services at very affordable rates perfect for small and medium level events.
Three years down the line and Mambo Yote has already done over 120 weddings, 50 corporate events and around 100 other social events; In the year 2015, the founder, Andy Mwangi received the “Entrepreneur of the year 2015” award in the Top 25 under 25 organized by KCA University.
Founder360° caught up with the founder of Mambo Yote Sound, Andy Mwangi to find out what drives such an exceptional individual.
So, who is Andy Mwangi?
Three words that describe me: visionary, optimistic and hardworking.
I am a third born in a family of 3. My single mother raised me until I was 8 years, after which she passed on. I lived in Murang’a under the care of my uncles and aunties until after I finished high school and moved to Nairobi.
I first went to Technology Primary School up to class 3 and later transferred to Uhuru Gardens for a year. I later transferred to St. Martins Primary School where I did my KCPE then joined Weithaga Boys High School where I graduated after completing my KCSE. After that, I joined Strathmore University to pursue business but dropped out after my 2nd year because I was not passionate about what I was studying. I then went straight into business, I have never been employed.
Tell us about Mambo Yote Sound and what drove you to start it.
Mambo Yote Sound is a business that provides entertainment services. The services include Sound equipment, DJ services, MCs, Stage platforms for all kinds of events.
I have always been passionate about music. I first started as a music artist while still trying to find out what to do in the industry. I later realized I also loved listening to music in general and one day as I was an event for a friend it was hard to find quality sound system by reliable people that’s also affordable. I also had friends with the same problem and I saw an opportunity and started doing my research on the same and I was convinced within me to do that. I went and registered the business and that is how it started.
How did you start the business?
I started with Kshs 1000 and that was for registration. I was marketing myself among my networks and finally I got my first job after 6 months, but it was a loss since I outsourced the services from a friend who sells the equipment.
But then all I wanted at that moment was photos and trust to be able to market myself even more. I outsourced the equipment for quite some time with the aim of providing better services. I saved enough money to buy my own equipment of around Kshs 300,000 and that was how I got my first equipment.
We have really grown since then and in November 2016 we bought another set of equipment. So far we have served at more than 120 weddings, 50 corporate events and around 100 other social events. We have also partnered with the Ficha Uchi Campaign whose patron is the former deputy governor of Nairobi Hon. Jonathan Mueke, Law Society of Kenya, Nairobi branch, NCBL etc.
What are the contributors to your success?
Consistency and Persistence has contributed to our success. We have previously faced challenges but chosen to still remain standing no matter what. We also market in all ways we can and that has made us who we are.
Our competitive advantage is that we provide high quality and professional services at very affordable rates. Apart from making profit, I am satisfied when I see a client smile because of our professional services. We always strive to make sure among all service providers we are the best.
Discipline is Key. Also be friends with people you’re working with. Let them see you as the boss and also a friend. I have also learnt to lead by example. Don’t just tell your employees what to do, join them in doing it.
What obstacles have you faced along the way?
Indeed we have faced many challenges in the past. Sometimes we might have many events that we can’t handle and we have to leave since someone did a late booking. We also don’t do all events especially when we sense all is not right because we have had instances where people booked us just to steal our equipment.
Do you think that being young has contributed to your success?
Being young has not contributed to my success. In fact sometimes it’s a challenge since event organizers want to work with people who have been in the industry for the longest time, someone who is less likely to mess in the event.
What’s your greatest entrepreneurial achievement?
In 2015 I received the Top 25 Under 25 entrepreneur of the year. In my life I have never received an award and business made me receive one.
What best motivates you?
My motivation is from God’s word. It has everything to do with working hard, humanity and passion. Don’t get used to what you do. Let every day and idea come with its own fun. Familiarity in business has killed many ideas.
Each year I usually have a quote to lead me throughout the year and for 2017 it’s ‘The difference between good and great is in the details’. I have learnt to get the details.