Young entrepreneur overcomes obstacles to open his waffle business

 

Yadev Singh (28) is a young South African who has not allowed life's challenges to get in the way of him becoming a successful entrepreneur. He raised the capital, created the concept and began his own takeaway dessert business this month.

Singh overcame financial hardship, bereavement, and bipolar disorder to open the doors of Sticky Waffle on 1 September at Grosvenor Crossing, Bryanston.

He moved to Johannesburg in his Grade 10 year from the small town of Verulam in KwaZulu-Natal. "I always saw things differently and did things differently to the other kids and when I came to Joburg, I just stood out," said Singh.

He scraped through matric and studied graphic design at the University of Johannesburg on and off for a few years. "I took up a number of jobs after graduating but always butted heads with my superiors and struggled to obey authorities."

Though he had put aside a fair amount of money while working, he had to use it all to pay medical bills when he was diagnosed with mitral valve prolapse and later depression.

Staff at Sticky Waffle are excited about the new dessert take-away business at Grosvenor Crossing. Innocent Ndlovu, Gracious Ndlovu, Pilani Ndlovu and Yadev Singh pose in front of the pay station. Photo: Sarah Koning

In 2012, he was diagnosed with bipolar and found it difficult to deal with the stigma surrounding the disorder. After struggling through a number of different jobs, he decided to become an entrepreneur in September last year.

Just when he thought the hurdles were over, he faced the biggest struggle of all – the death of his mother.

"She was my rock and supporter throughout life and it was so difficult to see her go. I took months to get over it, but I knew that each month that I didn't work, I would see the capital for my business go.

"I told my mom just before she died that I am going to fix things for her and so I believe I am opening this business for her. Her picture was the first thing I put up when I set up the shop and when things get tough, I know that I am doing this for her and somehow it will help me."

There are few local takeaway dessert options around Johannesburg, so Singh decided to fill the gap in the market. He serves light, fluffy waffles, and artisanal coffee at a reasonable price.

Business owner and creator of Sticky Waffle, Yadev Singh, stands outside his newly opened dessert take-away business in Grosvenor Crossing. Photo: Sarah Koning

He invested all the money he had into the business and is managing it himself. "It's the challenge that I'm after. I want to see people walk away happy with the price and the product. I enjoy the fact that I am not doing things conventionally, so the success or failure is on me."

Singh is committed to keeping the business local and about people.

Details: Check out Sticky Waffle on Facebook to find out more.

Customers place their orders at the brand new Sticky Waffle at Grosvenor Crossing in Bryanston. The concept and work behind the brand was put together by young entrepreneur Yadev Singh. Photo: Sarah Koning

 

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