“If I knew what I know now, I feel like things would have been a lot easier. With the knowledge platforms that are out there, like the Growth Hub website, for example, if I’d known about that four years ago, I feel like my route to starting my business would have been a lot quicker and much smoother road.” – Tania Rahman, founder and owner of Chit, Chaat, Chai.
Since starting out as a street market pop up, Indian eatery, Chit, Chaat, Chai has come very far. We met with founder and owner, Tania Rahman in the South West London establishment, to discuss her business journey. During our ‘chit chaat’, Tania explained what she wished she had known when she started up, shared her lessons learned for budding entrepreneurs and how business support programmes have helped her business grow.
“I started my own business purely self-funded from the start, so initially I spend a bit of money, a few hundred pounds to buy a gazebo to go around street food markets.
“The reason why I self-funded the business is because I didn’t really know where to go to access finance, funding or even information about how to get a business off the ground.
Tania sought support via business support schemes run by Virgin and J.P. Morgan.
“I have been lucky enough to be a part of a couple of accelerators. The Virgin Start Up Scale Up program was of the first accelerator programs that I joined, that was amazing. It completely changed the way that I’ve done business the past 12 months.”
Coming into a sector that is heavily dominated by males, Tania had to overcome challenges of being a female entrepreneur. Tania was able to find support from business support programmes specializing in supporting women entrepreneurs, such as the JP Morgan Hatch Foundation.
“The peer group I have there is mainly to do with the support, emotional support as well that you’re getting when you’re in a room full of a bunch of other female founders, which is really unheard of especially when you run your own business and you’re so in the thick of it every day.”