Entrepreneur Addresses Second Edition of Nairobi Center Workshop


Entrepreneur Addresses Second Edition of Nairobi Center Workshop

July 14, 2015

At the Thinking Big Workshop held recently at the Nairobi Center, Manilal Premchand Chandaria shared the values his family instilled in him.

“Integrity, hard work, honesty and a culture of savings are some of the values that my family has embraced in our code of conduct,” he said.  “To succeed in any business, you require a strong sense of discipline in your beliefs and values, only then can you withstand the pressure for corruption.”

This was the key message shared by Chandaria, an award-winning Entrepreneur, with the entrepreneurship class workshop that was held at Columbia Global Centers | Africa. He was the key guest speaker at the closing ceremony of the second chapter of the Thinking Big Workshop series, led by Professor Murray Low from Columbia Business School.

Chandaria had the opportunity to address 30 participants: the new class for 2015 and a good number of the 2014 returning class. While making reference to the theme of the workshop, he reminded the participants that it was the notion that something was not reachable that provided individuals with the necessary pressure to achieve big dreams.

He shared in great detail about his family’s struggles and experiences that led to the establishment and growth of the Comcraft Group of Companies, a billion-dollar enterprise that has a presence in more than 40 countries.

During the interactive session, he told the participants it took immense dedication, commitment, understanding one’s business environment and challenging oneself to think and achieve big.

Insisting that there were no shortcuts to success, he went on to say that the hardest challenge was to “convince oneself to move.” 

He noted the importance of personal interrogation where one criticized and kicked themselves was the catalyst to keep moving.

Noting that Comcraft was a family business, Chandaria urged the entrepreneurs to ensure they put in professional systems into the business to ensure growth and continuity.

Making reference to the Comcraft Foundation, Chandaria noted that self-satisfaction in business could only be achieved when entrepreneurs contributed to the betterment of the life of others.  “Tthat was the only way thinking big could be actualized,” he said.

Belay Begashaw, director of Columbia Global Centers | Africa (Nairobi), thanked Chandaria for taking time to come and share his experiences with the class. Noting that the Comcraft experience was one that entrepreneurs in Kenya could identify with, he urged the 2015 class to always remember that “Thinking big, it can be done.”


Columbia Business Professor Murray Low, pictured below, has led a series of workshops at the Nairobi Center designed to help position entrepreneurs to take advantage of the myriad existing opportunities for growth.

Related Links

Click image below to read Business Daily Q&A with Professor Murray Low (PDF)