I was willing to leave my hometown to try my luck elsewhere. So I went to Semarang, a city that promises a better future and more opportunities for the people of Central Java…
Like many Indonesian people, Sodikin felt he wanted more out of life. His small hometown offered little real opportunities for success.
Semarang is a city in Central Java that for years, has been a place of promise and a way out for the people in surrounding villagers and towns.With the hope of a better future and more opportunities, Sodikin left his family and friends for the bright lights of Semarang….
SUFFERING IN THE EARLY YEARS
Sodikin moved to Semarang and started working in a food court. After several years , Sodikin felt he could not reach success if he continued with this humble work. He realized to go forward and realize his dreams, he must make changes. Sodikin started thinking about starting a small business. He went with what he knew, Martabak. A favourite Indonesian snack.
Assisted by his wife Sunarti, Sodikin started the business in 1993, selling on the pavement to passersby. However, the reality of this venture was not as wonderful as he expected. Feeling like nomads in a big city, they didn’t have friends and family to support them and help guide them. Sodikin and Sunarti needed a strategy, they needed to know how to sell successfully in the big city. As a result, at the beginning of his efforts, he was making a profit of Rp. 11,000 a day, that’s less than $1 a day.
To support his growing family Sodikin tried everything and anything. Firstly he tried selling Durian, a favourite fruit amongst locals. But the competition was too fierce. He tried his luck pulling rickshaws in the daytime, a tough job for even the fittest of men. And although half dead from the days activities, he sold Martabak at night.
Sadly, for over eight years he was unable to enjoy the fruits of the struggle waged. It was a constant battle to survive.
Although exhausted with life, Sodikin was patient. He had to keep moving. A glimmer of hope presented itself in 1998, with information from friends, he met with the principal of a local school. With little on his side other than courage, he expressed his intentions to open a stall in the school cafeteria. A priceless opportunity for a food seller.At long last, Sodikin was finally given the opportunity to succeed. He opened a Martabak stall at the school cafeteria. Wisely, he took the initiative to join the Association of Indonesian Jasaboga (APJI) to gain greater social insights and support his growth.
Now, “Bang Martabak Sodik” has two branches. A highlight in his career was when an aid to the mayor of Semarang ordered ‘Bang Martabak Sodik’ to cater guests at an event. The result was on every happy, and long-time loyal customer, the mayor of Semarang himself. Sodikin now also accepts orders for wedding parties and events.
Sodikin says the key to his success is his bold, daring and optimistic nature.And last but not least, for the wanderers like himself, he advises that friends are important to any new business. And through his friends at Sriboga, he found the food ingredients of high quality, people he can trust and a community that supports him.
Moreover, Sodikin wife and also feel appreciated, because business guidance by means of Cooperative Partners Sriboga. In addition, he was also invited to visit the other small industries for a comparative study. After a dozen years in business Martabak, Sodikin already getting results widener smile. Turnover effort to reach 30 million per week, with a consumption of four sacks of Bears Blue and Gold Rope per week.