Melford Vicent Marah, a Sierra Leonean entrepreneur, recently shared her success story on her Facebook page. She started her business, I-GRO Organics, with just Le 60,000/Nle 60 as capital and has come a long way since then. In seven years, she has gone from having one breakthrough hair formula to 11 authentic hair and skin care products, owning a full manufacturing or production space, and being a core supplier of leading supermarkets and pharmacies across Sierra Leone.
Melford started by mixing her products in her kitchen and selling them at expos, convincing people that Sierra Leonean products work well. She was a lone CEO, brander, marketer, production manager, and delivery woman all in one. But now she has built a team of professional young people who are sold out to the I-GRO dream. She owns the first of its kind core and strictly natural hair salon in Sierra Leone and has single-handedly trained more than eight young ladies in natural hair care, free of charge, some of whom are now part of the I-GRO team and others who have gone out empowered with a new skill.
Melford believes that consistency, diligence, and a knack for excellence will get you anywhere you need to be. She has consistently formulated products that have never dwindled in their potency and quality and has kept product and packaging standards high, amidst price hikes, stressful shipping arrangements, crazy taxes, dollar rates, and most importantly, dealing with different people who have come and gone.
Melford’s hard work and dedication have not gone unnoticed. She recently received an award from The Sierra Leone Business Council, which made her think of how far her business has come. She acknowledges that it’s only God who can keep and sustain such a business. She thanks the award committee for noticing her and her team doing their thing in their little corner. She also expresses her gratitude to her team, who bought into the vision and are willing to work with her. Melford’s clients and customers are the very best, and she believes that Sierra Leoneans do support their own as long as good quality products and services are provided.
Melford’s success story is a testament to the fact that with hard work, dedication, and consistency, one can achieve anything they set their mind to. She has shown that starting small should not deter one from dreaming big and that success is achievable even in the face of challenges. Melford’s story is an inspiration to many aspiring entrepreneurs who may be starting with very little capital but have a big dream.