A former civil servant from Lambeth has realised her dream of being her own boss, and making a real difference to people’s lives, with help from HSBC Commercial Bank.
Hina Bajwa, who’s 10 year civil service career included experience of the care industry, has purchased a franchise from Bluebird Care, which will see her running her own business providing home care for a wide range of customers.
With funding of £45,000 over 5 years from HSBC, and backing from the Government’s Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) scheme, to help her purchase the franchise, Mrs Bajwa now has her franchise up and running. The EFG scheme assists those who are looking to invest in a business but may not have the necessary security immediately available.
Hina Bajwa explained: “I was in a job where I saw no real prospect of flourishing within the next decade, so I knew the time had come for me to broaden my horizons and leave. With encouragement from my husband I started to look at franchise opportunities, and while I was not immediately confident I would be able to run my own business, I came across Bluebird Care’s website and was immediately smitten. The thought of being my own boss in the important area of the care industry, an area where I’d already got an insight sounded like a perfect opportunity for me.
“This was a major step for me. It took me a further six months to research my options, consider the pros and cons of starting a business, and most importantly convince myself that I could be a businesswoman. Bluebird Care have been great in explaining the operation, setting up the necessary training, and helping to give me the confidence to grasp this opportunity. My business is now up and running, and I am looking forward to many happy years as my own boss.
“If anyone is unhappy in their daily grind, people should realise there is another world out there that could bring them new opportunities, and even if they do not have a lot of security behind them, schemes like the EFG might be able to help.”
Cathryn Hayes, Head of Franchising at HSBC, said: “HSBC is committed to supporting strong, viable UK businesses of all sizes and across all sectors. We have provided finance for Mrs Bajwa because we are experts in funding franchises and know this model well. We believe in Mrs Bajwa, she is a great example of someone who is looking for a change, and does something about it. She has experience in the care industry, and she knows this franchise opportunity will suit her and give her important job satisfaction that maybe wasn’t there in her previous employment. I am sure she will make this venture a success.
“The Enterprise Finance Guarantee, which helped Mrs Bajwa secure finance for the franchise, is available to people who may not immediately have the financial security required to get funding to set up or expand their business. This Government-backed funding scheme is extremely useful in helping entrepreneurs like Mrs Bajwa realise a dream.”
Steve Moggs, an HSBC Local Business Manager, Hina Bajwa’s relationship manager who brokered the deal, said: “Mrs Bajwa took the correct approach when seeking funding. She did her research and pulled together an impressive and well presented Business Plan. This, combined with the HSBC Franchise Department's knowledge of Bluebird Care and the backing of the Enterprise Finance Guarantee scheme, greatly assisted her in being able to get the funding approved.”
Bluebird Care is a management franchise. Hina’s role as the Franchise Owner is to develop the business and manage the staff.
Simon Dalziel, Franchise Director at Bluebird Care commented: “We are delighted to have Hina in our large franchise network. She has shown plenty of initiative and application to get this far and we are confident that with the proven Bluebird Care business system and with our support and on-going training, she will be very successful.”
Photo: HSBC’s Stephen Moggs with Hina Bajwa and Mayor of Lambeth Clive Bennett at the opening of Hina’s office in Streatham.