A GRAPHIC designer who was refused a loan from a bank has started his own business — thanks to a charitable loan.
Mahmoud Jahami has just launched Photo Posh Design with the help of the Fredericks Wiltshire organisation.
The 43-year-old initially approached a high-street bank for a loan of £3,179, but his application was rejected with no reason given.
However, his local Job Centre told him about Fredericks Wiltshire and Mahmoud applied directly.
Mahmoud moved to Rodbourne from London a year ago and approached Fredericks Wiltshire with his completed business plan in August.
In October, he met with the lending panel in Swindon when the loan was approved and he launched Photo Posh Design in December.
“Meeting Fredericks was an amazing experience,” said Mahmoud.
“They were incredibly helpful and supportive. I appreciate every single thing they’ve done for me.
“The lending panel was very professional, I was worried because they didn’t know my experience or my background. I’d had 10 years out of this business, but they put their trust in me.”
Mahmoud was quick to get his business off the ground and began by contacting regional graphic design and advertising agencies.
He had previously built up large agency offices, including setting up and running the Riyadh office of Leo Burnett, originally starting with five people and growing quickly to employ 45 people.
He said: “It’s very difficult because, although I’m highly experienced, I’ve been out of the business for a while.
“I am willing to start from a junior level and I see no shame in this.
“I’m not scared of the challenge, but the biggest challenge is the start.”
Nynke Hunter, Fredericks Wiltshire’s client manager, said: “Mahmoud is terrific and brings lots of passion and energy to his business.
“He has previously run highly-successful businesses and has got a real determination to succeed.
“He just needed a helping hand to get the equipment in place.
“The Fredericks Foundation was delighted to help and we look forward to the success of Photo Posh Design.”
To find out more about the Fredericks Foundation, visit www.fredericksfoundation.org and, for more about Photo Posh Design, visit www.photoposhdesign.com.