At the end of July 2021, a few days before the opening of his Bionems restaurant in Quimperlé in Finistère, Thi Hahn Doan is putting in the work to finalize the final preparations. Earlier in the week, this 31-year-old entrepreneur was still roaming the region’s organic markets with her food truck to delight the taste buds of passers-by and sell her different varieties of spring rolls, spring rolls and bobun.
Arrived from Vietnam at the age of 18 and graduated in banking management, Thi Hahn Doan quickly wanted a more playful activity than that for which her studies intended her. She discovers the markets thanks to her mother-in-law who sells her organic cheeses there. “I was able to test for several weeks my abilities to undertake, discover the markets, the relationship with customers, inventory management and realize that I liked it,” says the 30-year-old.
Food truck start
In 2016, she decided to go for it and found a truck at auction. She finances the purchase of the vehicle, 16,000 euros, thanks to a microcredit from Adie and the help of her relatives. In terms of status, his choice then falls on the sole proprietorship, a very simple structure to create, which is also flexible and light, with very few legal formalities.
From the start, his ambition was not limited to creating his own job. She wants to recruit employees and have recognized, quality and homemade products. In 2018, Thi Hahn Doan hired her first employee, then a second, then a third.
The food truck business was doing very well. I managed to raise a contribution of 15,000 euros.
At the same time, she is looking for a room that would serve as a laboratory. “The steps were long and did not succeed. There are very few premises. The banks were also very cautious. They asked me for a contribution of 15,000 euros which I did not have, ”says the manager, who has fitted out a kitchen in her parents’ garage.
Bank loan, finally!
At the beginning of 2020, her perseverance finally paid off when she found a point of sale in the center of Quimperlé. The opportunity to expand and produce more. She obtained an honorary loan of 15,000 euros from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in June 2021, and to put the odds on her side, she approached a broker. “The food truck business was doing very well. I managed to raise a contribution of 15,000 euros, ”reports Thi Hahn Doan, who achieved 80,000 euros in turnover in 2020.
In the summer of 2021, the Breton entrepreneur ended up obtaining a bank loan of 70,000 euros and transformed her sole proprietorship into an EIRL (Individual Company with Limited Liability), on the advice of her accountant to protect her main residence. “I wanted to better protect myself as a business leader and protect my personal assets. »
Thi Hahn Doan plans to recruit an additional full-time person within a year and to switch to a company, a limited liability company to be precise, if the activity of his restaurant allows it. “This status will allow me to associate myself while preserving my personal assets,” says the entrepreneur.