Kenya has been considered an attractive tourist destination for decades.
With over 2 million tourists annually, tours and travel business has, over the years, become one of the most profitable businesses in Kenya.
Athuman Mwingo Chirima is the founder of Duruma Tours and Safaris.
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In an exclusive interview with WoK, the 28-year-old narrated how he founded the company in 2022 after working at a construction site for close to 2 years.
Here is Chirima’s story as told by WoK.
Before founding Duruma Tours and Safaris, Chirima worked as a casual laborer at different construction sites in Mombasa County.
He last worked with a company responsible for construction of the Dongo Kundu Bypass Highway.
“I worked there for a while until I realized the potential that I had if I would create my own company and that is how I started Duruma Tours and Safaris,” Chirima explained.
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Chirima explained that he developed interest in tourism while in high school.
He had been sponsored by an international organization, and when volunteers would visit them, they would hop onto a safari.
Chirima looked at the same in a business aspect and vowed to venture into the business later after completing school.
“I would see them go on safaris and book with other companies and people would make a lot of money. I was inspired to start my own company and convince them to book through my company for safaris,” he explained.
Chirima also stated that he started his own company in a bid to quit employment.
Duruma Tours and Safaris is situated in Mombasa County and their services include safaris, accommodation and hotel bookings among others.
Chirima hopes to grow and introduce more destinations and services even as he seeks to reach other big players in the industry.
“We’re taking a step at a time and we hope that one day we will reach be great and equal to other industry players who have grown,” he said.
He also mentioned future plans to absorb youth who pursued tourism-related courses but they are unable to secure jobs.
“People should consider upcoming companies so that we reduce the unemployment rate, and provide jobs to these youth who have family to look after,” Chirima said.
Chirima cited low recognition of upcoming companies as among the main challenges in his business.
He also mentioned competition from established companies.