Observations after a month of running a restaurant in Abidjan

by phil December 18, 2013 Biz

Here are a few observations and lessons learned from nearly two months of running a full service restaurant in Abidjan. Running a restaurant is a great way to meet people. Among our regulars, we have the captain of ASEC Mimosas (Cote d’Ivoire’s most storied club football team). We have Monsieur Kedjenou, an extremely well-read Anglo-Ivorian […]

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Open for Business

by phil November 6, 2013 Biz

Around the end of each month, you start to see a few more armored trucks than usual rolling around Abidjan. They are filled with cash and on their way to supply banks and ATMs with the monthly salaries of workers who find themselves in the formal economy. Some people are paid around the 24th and […]

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If this works, I’m buying a camel

by phil August 20, 2013 Biz

Just a short update on version 2.0 of our restaurant/catering business. Over the past couple of years, I have made less money than I did as a teacher in Washington, DC. But my current income – a combination of writing, online income from affiliates and advertising, and a modest amount from version 1.0 of our […]

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Venya 2.0: Creating a restaurant sur place in Abidjan

by phil August 7, 2013 Biz

I wrote some time ago about our plans to scale up our food business in Abidjan (for previous posts on the biz, see here). After convincing two additional friends to invest in the project, we are beginning to realize those plans. The latest development: we have a location! Up until now, we have been operating […]

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Our First Major Setback

by phil November 6, 2012 Biz

A picture of our phone bank earlier this year It has been a while since I talked about our Abidjan lunch delivery biz (last post on it is here). When I wrote the last update, we were going through 25kg of potatoes a day and delivering 100 plates of food every afternoon. In the past […]

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25 Kg of Potatoes a Day

by phil August 15, 2012 Biz

6:30 AM – Starting the work day at the Toits Rouges Allocodrome We started this lunch delivery/catering business in January. We had no employees, just the three partners – me and my two former couchsurfing hosts, Faty and David – and Faty’s neighbor Didy. Our maisonette was unfinished and we didn’t yet have our space […]

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