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Friday, September 25, 2020

Almamo Fatty, the D1950-a-month banker who became a successful businessman

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Almamo:Thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to have an interview with your media house and keep it up. About myself, I am an ambitious Gambian from a very small village call Piniai, in Niamina West, CRR. I am a very typical African and proud one for that matter who is working very hard to add value to everyone around me and my country, The Gambia as a whole in any way I can. I’m a professional chartered accountant and a businessman. I started my first job as a banker with Trust Bank and then I moved to Guaranty Trust Bank, which we opened in 2002 and the following year I travelled.  I’m happily married with a beautiful family of three children.

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Why did you move to the UK?

 I moved to UK in 2003 to pursue higher education. I already graduated with my ACCA. I never did accounting before then but due to my business ambitions, I went for ACCA.

 

Can you share with us your journey from being a poor Niamina boy to a successful businessman?

To be honest, I am very grateful to Allah for everything that is happening in my life. And I must tell you all credits goes to people I love so much, people who are seeing that we can do it ourselves and these people are no other than Gambians. I am very proud of being one! The key to any success is education and the willingness to be a learner. When I was going to school, both O’ levels and A’ levels, I always thought about where I come from and I always remembered my background and that really helped me and kept me focus. I remember, when I went for interview at Trust Bank sitting down waiting for my turn and people were coming from inside and wishing their relatives good luck. I was like, I stand no chance of getting the job.  But guess what? I was the lucky one!. So it is all about determination! Coming from a rural village and to be where I am today, I can only be grateful to Allah and Gambians. I am very grateful to my parents, my wonderful wife for all her support and understanding and my grandmother, the late Bakoto Jadama.

 

What gave you the idea for your business, Supersonicz?

This will surprise everyone, but its goes with the saying behind every successful man there stands a good woman.  My wife was a real catalyst to my business career. My first business, a first class beauty salon, was a failure. I lost more than one million dalasi. Then my wife suggested that I should start something that is related to my previous job as a banker. That is how Supersonicz money transfer was born. Today, it is one of the biggest Gambian-owned money transfer companies. When I was coming to the market, no Gambian money transfer company was dealing with a bank even Bayba, which was the only properly licensed and registered business. Supersonicz is a joint owned business. My fantastic brother, Njundu Fatty is also co-owner. In the beginning he was very skeptical. I told him that I wouldn’t start unless I get a bank or financial institution on board. He thought I was too ambitious, but he later agreed with my ideas. We were the first to introduce instant real time money transfer to The Gambia and today the same software system is use by most of the Gambian money transfer companies in UK.

 

How much was your salary when you were working at Trust Bank?

At Trust Bank my salary was only D1950 a month as net and I was paid D100 for every Saturday because I worked in a branch, in Bakau.

 

According to information reaching us, you are involved in different charitable activities. Can you please tell us more?

Like I said earlier, everyone must have a reason to be in business in a way you can touch other people’s life with your business. I am happy I am doing my little best in that respect and will continue to do so.  But it’s not something I am doing for publicity purpose and I can’t say much but I am happy and wish Allah helps me to do more.

 

What are your plans for the future?

I have very big plans and hopefully some of those will be coming to light soon, especially in The Gambia. I want to expand my business more and thank God through partnership with the Aftab Currency Exchange (ACE), my company is now in 10 European countries apart from UK: Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Holland, Norway, Repulic of Ireland and Greece.  And coming soon are: France, Switzerland, Finland, and Belgium and USA. So I encourage every Gambian to continue to support Supersonicz.  We transfer money to Africa, Asia and Europe. Also note in The Gambia, you can receive your money from any Guaranty Trust Bank, Trust Bank, Supersonicz branches, Yonna Forex and Zenith Bank -even on Sundays, public holidays and till 7pm GMT with Yonna Forex. Finally, who said Gambians can’t do it? I am so proud of the support Supersonicz is getting in all these European countries and if other communities like the Asians can do it, so we can as Gambians and Africans.  

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