Our Ladyboss this week, Daisy Adul, Founder, Uneeq Salon software, Kenya’s first cloud based salon software, providing affordable and convenient cloud based business solutions such as inventory management, customer data collection, invoicing, payroll, financial reports, branch management, appointment scheduling and so much more within the beauty and wellness industry. Having worked in the corporate world before venturing into business, Daisy has been able to transfer some skills learnt in that sphere into entrepreneurship. Today, she discusses her motivation for Uneeq Salon Software emphasizing how the innovation is being received by her clients in the beauty&wellness industry and then so much more. Read up to learn of her and her business. Enjoy!
Can you briefly describe yourself and your business?
In summary, I am an experienced professional in Marketing and Client relations as well as founder of Uneeq Salon software, Kenya’s first cloud based salon software. Having worked within the Logistics industry with multinationals such as FedEx Express, Bollore Logistics for over a decade, I inherently understand how vital customer service, marketing, strategic planning and implementation is to a business. I am not only passionate with everything I put my energy into, but also highly driven by what the world has to offer and hope to leave it better than I found it.
Uneeq is a software company providing affordable and convenient cloud based business solutions such as inventory management, customer data collection, invoicing, payroll, financial reports, branch management, appointment scheduling and so much more within the beauty and wellness industry.
What is it like being a female entrepreneur, and why did you chose to be one?
Being a female entrepreneur is one of the most challenging things I have had to do so far. Reason being, everything seems to be twice as hard. From getting investors that actually believe in you and your business to building relevance in your space. When I started off I wasn’t sure of what business networks I needed to join, and being in the beauty and wellness industry, it was very difficult to get certain people to understand my business model or appreciate it as much. Today, I am grateful to have opportunities and avenues where I can share my own experiences, learn and even get support from other female entrepreneurs who might be going through similar challenges or simply exhaling within their business.
Having worked in the corporate world for years within the Supply chain and distribution(Logistics) industry, I felt it was time for me to change the course of my career and venture into a space I am not only comfortable in but also passionate about and that is the beauty and wellness industry. And so this is the reason I chose to be an entrepreneur as of last year.
What new innovation have you introduced to your business?
Our system currently manages not just one salon at a time but multiple branches within one account. We also have a comprehensive dashboard that allows you to view all your upcoming appointments through a click of a button and can work in any part of the world. Meaning you could be somewhere in Greece on holiday and still view daily activities within your salon, that includes your daily sales.
What will you say is responsible for your success so far?
For any business to succeed, it is very important to have a team that understands the vision of the company. In addition, having the right team with experience in their fields such as digital marketing, IT processes and customer service has played a major role in ensuring all aspects of my business are run effectively.
Constant need to improve our system has allowed us to stay relevant to our customers. Ensuring we provide an outstanding customer experience gives them the assurance that we treat their business as we would our own.
In your opinion, would you say that there are any unique challenges that female entrepreneurs face?
We all struggle with funding at one point or another in our businesses especially startups and statistics show investors across the globe tend to fund male driven businesses much more as compared to businesses owned by females. Currently, we have a number of female funded programs or organizations supporting women in business in one way or another and many more coming up. So in my opinion, this is a major challenge but I am optimistic with the kind of change I am seeing in this space so far.
What values and principles have helped you so far?
Persistence and perseverance. Without this I don’t know if at all we would be where we are as a business. Another thing is patience. 90% of startups do not get to see profits/return on investment immediately and at times this could be very frustrating. But once you understand that a startup is like a newborn and needs nurturing then challenges within the business become easier to cope with and better to manage.
Lastly, is consistency and character. You have to be true to yourself and your customers. I believe there is nothing wrong with organic growth within the business and it is okay if the first few months or year of operations you are not making profits. Additionally, customers want to relate with you and your business in an open and transparent manner. So it is importance to hold a high level of credibility in both cases.
Why did you decide to go into this particular line of business?
My journey began about 3 years ago with a friend of mine who happens to be my business partner. We frequent the salon quite often and noticed processes at the salons was still very manual, despite majority of Kenyans having embraced technology. This ranged from booking of appointments all the way to the manual book keeping and issuing of receipts. I travel a lot and one of the things I noticed was how organized salons out there were running their processes. So, based on these observations, I saw an opportunity.
What are some of the challenges you’ve faced, and what’s kept you going?
Like any startup, one of the most difficult things to do is introduce your product or service into the market. So for me, getting businesses within the beauty and wellness industry to see our service as a need rather than a want has been very difficulty. Secondly, the fact that it is a software, one would need a computer for efficiency but most of the business owners do not have that. So, it was a challenge but thankfully enough we eventually found a way of providing them with complementary tablets which is value added for some of our customers.
Lastly, I would say as an entrepreneur starting up, most times we are not equipped with enough knowledge on how to run a business. Finding platforms especially as a female entrepreneur where you can learn, grow, share or simply interact with other female entrepreneurs is usually not the easiest thing to do; so for me, it has made it very difficult to see progress in certain key areas that are essential to the growth of my business.
What’s your five-year plan for your business?
Being the first salon software in Kenya integrated for the African market is not enough, so my goal simply is to see Uneeq software and APP not only used in East Africa but across certain West African countries as well as South Africa.
What do upcoming female entrepreneurs need to do to be successful in this path?
For any entrepreneur, the one thing always stressed on numerously is on getting started. Use whatever limited or readily available resources you have. That is friends, family or even associates, their advice is free. You do not necessarily require a background in Tech but learn everything you need to about the service you want to offer. After all, knowledge is power. You will not know it all in a day but I believe it is work in progress. The most important thing for me is identifying a problem and coming up with a solution. From this you will find your target market. Do enough research on ground, software developers, and other similar existing systems. And lastly, run with it like a boss lady that you are.
The LLA Lady Boss Series is a weekly interview series that highlights the achievements and entrepreneurial journeys of African female entrepreneurs. The idea is to showcase the Leading Ladies who are transforming Africa and the African narrative through enterprise and business.
It is an off-shoot of Leading Ladies Africa, a non-profit that promotes leadership, inclusion and diversity for women of African descent.
If you know any kick-ass women of African Descent doing phenomenal things in enterprise, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and she could possibly be featured.