Many business people ask Ugandan billionaire Sudhir Ruparelia how he made his fortune. It is a question he is accustomed to answering.
Sudhir, possibly the country’s most charismatic businessman is the chairman of Ruparelia Group, one of the top taxpayers in Uganda. The businessman who rose from a taxi driver to being listed among Africa’s top 100 billionaires, is an inspiration to many people, but rarely appears in public forums to talk about himself, and how he made his money.
The entrepreneur who built Ruparelia Group brick by brick shared his wealth of business wisdom in www.billionairetomorrow.com webinar recently. Billionaire Tomorrow is a publication dedicated to the hard work and struggles of wealth creation in Africa from the dreamers to billionaires in the making.
Three decades ago, Sudhir was a normal businessman in Kampala city. He had used his savings as a taxi driver in the United Kingdom to start a business in his motherland, Uganda.
Today, the billionaire’s thoughts drawn from the experience of steadily growing his empire is priceless.
Sudhir and his family have business interests in hospitality, education, real estate, finance, insurance, labor export, and agriculture, among others.
In series, we shall be bringing you tips on what Sudhir says will help your business survive the turbulent seas of entrepreneurship and business management.
He told ‘Billionaires Tomorrow’ website his two cents on borrowing to start a business.
“Do not expand very quickly, outside your means,” he cautions on wise use of capital.
“Allow some form of organic growth. So long as you have a good amount of cash flow coming in, you need to first focus on projects which you can fund.” He said.
One might imagine, since Sudhir made his fortune, partly because of his investment in financial institutions, he would advise business people to borrow to start their businesses.
No. He doesn’t.
“Avoid borrowing if you can,” he wisely, points out. Instead, the billionaire, says, “First, try and grow according to the cash flow you have and are creating. It is probably the best option. Because the truth is said, opportunities come all the time, especially when you have good cash flow. Take those opportunities.”