Turning adversity into opportunity: Entrepreneur starts a business after losing job

Turning adversity into opportunity: Entrepreneur starts a business after losing job

SME Inspirations

GlobalLinker Staff

GlobalLinker Staff

199 week ago — 4 min read

Enterprise: Hannah’s Handicraft
Founder: Cristina Anggana
Industry:  Fashion and Accessories 
Year it was founded: 2015
Location: Cebu City


Anyone would agree on how tough and stressful it is to lose a job. But for Cristina Anggana, losing a job, after the company she worked with shutdown, meant a new beginning.

What seemed like an unfortunate event paved the way for her to establish her own business.

Utilizing her two decades worth of experience in garments merchandising, Cristina started Hannah’s Handicrafts, named after her daughter Hannah, offering and supplying handmade bags, clutches, purses, and fashion accessories to different companies in the Philippines and abroad.

Hannah’s Handicraft uses locally sourced materials mostly available in Cebu like abaca and pandan, and other indigenous materials like coconut shells, wooden beads, and sea shells. Together with her husband, Gerard, she runs Hannah’s Handicraft and provides jobs to at least 40 neighbours within her community.

Hannah's Handicraft

Dealing with insufficient working capital

Despite her extensive experience after working in several export companies, the road to having a successful business wasn’t straightforward.

Cristina had to deal with insufficient working capital while running her business. To solve this, she would often ask her buyers for 50% down payment to fulfil orders. For years, Cristina had to deal with this in order to pay her employees and to ensure her business continues its operation.

Also read: How to take advantage of short-term loan to jumpstart your business

But things changed when she participated in various bazaars and trainings organized by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). Through continuous improvement and being observant of trends, she was able to supply her products to major establishments including SM’s Kultura and Rustan’s Mall. Hannah’s Handicrafts also exports products to United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Germany, and the United States.

Hannah's Handicraft

When asked about her secret in staying in the game, Cristina shares: “(You must) be faithful in your season. We’ve been through the ups and downs that helped us to stand our ground. We are faithful in our season that whatever we have now, we are utilizing it to survive and adjust.”

Navigating the new normal

As her business offers non-essential products, Cristina has to deal with the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. Though she admits that this is a difficult situation for her business, Christina is maximizing this time to improve her operations, develop new products, and boost her business’ online presence.

Recently, she opened her own online store through UnionBank GlobalLinker to maximize the digital potential of her business.

Also read: Create your own online store on UnionBank GlobalLinker for free

With cancelled physical trade fairs due to pandemic, Cristina admits that going online allowed them to introduce their products to a wider audience.

Cristina also encourages other business owners to keep the faith and to remain positive as situations like the pandemic will build up and strengthen them. “Continue being determined and dedicated because this will come to pass.”

To find out more about Cristina’s products, visit her online store here.

To explore business opportunities, link with Cristina Anggana by clicking on the 'Connect' button on her profile.


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