Business expert Odwa Duru considered himself fortunate to have at least a job at a nearby funeral home, but he had no idea that his path would lead to something greater: becoming a seasoned businessman operating a funeral home.
Odwa Duru Funeral Services, located in Gqeberha, Eastern Cape, was founded by Duru, 48. The company began operations in 2017.
Duru described his path to entrepreneurship in an interview with Sunday World, saying that he started off working as an attendant at a local funeral home for 12 years.
I’ve always been grateful to have a job, he remarked.
When he was given the chance to work at Ncedisizwe Funeral Parlour, where his abilities were developed, he was inspired to launch his own company in the sector.
“The funeral home’s owner consistently praised my work. Regardless of the competition at the time, he thought I had enough business knowledge to manage my own operation.
Then, he advised me to think about working independently after two years of working under his supervision.
“I was equipped to handle the next challenge. Due to my familiarity with the industry, I thought it would be simple. Even though I wasn’t ready for the financial difficulties that come with having my own company, my mentors made sure I was ready to launch it, said Duru.
When the time came for him to launch his own company, he said that his mentors and former employer supported him throughout the procedure and gave him the chance to utilize Ncedisizwe space for body storage for almost nine months.
He prioritized promoting the brand under his own name since he was already well-known in the industry and had the skills to do it.
“At first, I intended to call the company by the names of my kids, but Odwa Duru was already a well-known brand. I buried almost 60 dead throughout my first year. Currently, I operate a fleet of 22 automobiles and bury roughly 20 dead every week.
For a traditional coffin funeral, his funeral home provides two family vehicles and one hearse, and for a high-end dome casket, five family cars and a hearse are available.
“I work hard to provide excellent service. I actively advertise via word of mouth as well.
47 people are employed by the company.
»From mortician’s helper to successful entrepreneur«