Putting Local Wealth to Work in Ethiopia
Abebaw Gessese is a poultry farm owner in the rural town of Mojo, a few hours south of Ethiopia’s capital. Poultry farming, however, wasn’t always Gessese’s profession. He majored in accounting at Addis Ababa University and spent a decade working in the Development Bank of Ethiopia before deciding to take the risk that every entrepreneur must take: giving up the security of a constant paycheck to pursue a dream.
You could say that starting a farm was in Gessese’s blood. Both of his parents are farmers, and he grew up looking after the family’s cattle and sheep. After seeing firsthand the growing yet unmet demand for poultry in the capital, he knew starting a poultry farm could be the answer for improving his life, his two children’s future, and his community. While he was determined to push forward and successfully acquired a certificate to lease land from the Oromia regional government (in Ethiopia, the Government owns all land), Gessese lacked the financing for his poultry business.