Behind The Scene
Mohammad Siddik Sheikh, a 45 year old from a poor family from the Bahaina Dakhkhinpara area overcame many obstacles to set up a small bucket factory about six years ago. Siddik did this by borrowing 75,000 taka from the Karma Sangsthan Bank and a local branch of BRAC Bank.
The factory is called “Sujon Enterprise” and is located in the Bgaina Dakhkhinpara area, about a kilometer and half from the town of Magura, right beside the Magura – Jessore highway. The factory produces more than 100 pails of different sizes on a day to day basis. These buckets have won the hearts of consumers due to their quality.
According to the factory workers, the pails of Sujon Enterprise are made of plane sheets. The pails are used for not only household needs but also by businesses and other establishments to store water and other liquids in them. Siddik's buckets have taken over the markets of Jhenidah, Jessore, Magura Sadar, Sreepur, Mohammadpur and the Shalikha upazilas, while facing some serious competition from bucket manufacturers in Dhaka, Faridpur and other districts.
Nahida Akter, a housewife at Bhaina Rae in the town of Magura said, “For household use we buy buckets made in Sujon Enterprise because of its quality”. Abu Bakar, a construction worker, also said similar things about the buckets.
Mohammad Laku Mia, a chief bucket maker (of the six people working in the factory) who has been working for Sujon Enterprise since its inception in 2005 for a monthly salary of taka 5,000 said, “We make at least 170 buckets of different sizes on every weekday, using plane-sheets that are bought from the markets of Jessore”. “We buy the sheets from Jessore even though they are readily available in Magura because of the cheaper rates and sometimes we also get credit,” he added. According to Laku, the other workers get paid a salary of taka 4,000 every month.
The sales and marketing in-charge, Habibur Rahman said, “Our factory makes buckers of eight sizes, which are between 9 to 16 inches in height with the same diameter for relevant sizes. But we have to sell at minimum margins since there is a lot of competition. Right now we sell a 9 inch bucket which cost us taka 105 to make, at a wholesale price of taka 115 and a 16 inch bucket which cost us taka 230 to make, we sell at taka 240.” Rabiul Islam, a proprietor of a crockery shop said that the pails made at the factory are of standard quality and are easily sold to the customers because of its reasonable price.
“Though the buckets made in our factory have already won the hearts of customers for their quality, we still fail to earn handsome profits since costs are on the rise. And repay banks loans and interests are quite burdensome. Maybe the government could take up an initiative to provide easier loans to small businesses like mine.”.
(R) thedailystar.net 2012