“Everybody loves to hunt for a bargain” -Toufic Kreidieh (The Co-Founder of BFL)
In 1996, two childhood friends, Toufic Kreidieh and Yasser Beydoun, became business partners when they opened up their first retail shop in the native land of Lebanon. Brands For Less (BFL) is a retail chain that has value in today’s world of retail. The chain includes toys and homes for the less.
The Initial Background
The two friends never liked being employees; they wanted to be their own boss. And that is when the history of BFL began. Toufic and Yasser had a struggling childhood. They were born in Beirut and exposed to the Civil war. Eversince, they had to work hard and support their families. After getting admission to one of the best schools in his town, Toufic started doing a part-time job and earning since he was just 13.
Both the owners went to the same universities and got the scholarship, which helped them save money. The money they saved aided them in opening up their business. Toufic worked everywhere; from a petrol seller to building material supplier, he made sure to work hard and earn money until and unless it affected his studies.
Toufic says that he truly values everything he has achieved so far. He worked very hard to acquire all of it.
Beginning of an Era
Gulf Oil was the starter. In 1996, Toufic was called to work as a manager at Gulf Oil in Lebanon. On the other hand, Yasser and Toufic opened up their first store by the side. They first used to do offloading of containers, warehouse keeping, and cleaning. Whatever happened later, this was the beginning of BFL.
Both partners were dreamers; they wanted to achieve something big. In this desire to become successful, Toufic and Yasser saw a gap between brands and consumers. The idea of a successful business is to bridge the gap between consumers and their desires.
We all know that everyone wants branded clothing, toys, and anything else, but not everybody can afford it. In this situation, the friends opened up BFL. In their stores, they had deals and discounts for people who loved purchasing branded things. Everybody loves to bargain, and for consumers, the best part is when they become successful in bargaining. Entrepreneurs are hunters; they see the opportunity, they seize it.
By the time BFL had three stores in Lebanon, and in 2000, Toufic decided to move out with Gulf Oil and spread his roots in UAE. He opened up his headquarters in Dubai. He took personal loans from banks and started opening up in different cities and countries.
Toufic and Yasser knew that every time there was a downturn in the economy, the consumer demand curve would shift. And a shift in the demand of consumers would mean an opportunity for the two young businessmen. Their idea was to have something that has a niche, and off-pricing and bargaining had a lot of value in the US.
The Current State of BFL
Currently, BFL has 76 stores worldwide, with headquarters and over 50 branches in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates. The goal of both the founders is to reach 300 to 400 stores worldwide. Recently, they have been aiming to hit a 100 as soon as possible.
In the eyes of these businessmen, investing in property is the biggest investment that one can make. Toufic says that whatever they earn from their business, they make sure that they open up a new franchise in a new city. Toufic says that earning from the income of investment is also one smart decision. And investing in real estate helps you in living a life with incoming rent.
In 2019, Toys for Less (TFL) won the best toy store in Dubai Kids’ time-out.
In 2020, when pandemic had hit the world, Toufic made sure that he made the most out of the situation. During the pandemic, Business For Less (BFL) opened up ten new franchises. When people were saving their money, these businessmen were seizing the opportunity. Real estate was also going through a bad shift in the curve. Property did not have much value, and in this situation, Toufic invested in property, and today he is earning double the amount. His presence of mind and unique techniques made him achieve an award of the “hero of the pandemic” for his ecom website.
Wrapping it Up
This inspiring story of the two struggling kids of Lebanon who became entrepreneurs reminds us that hard work always pays off. No matter how tough your life is and how challenging your goal seems, you can always achieve it if you set your mind to something.
Toufic and Yasser were two friends who ensured that they did not end up from where they began. Their life started as two kids working hard to support their families. And now, they are the two entrepreneurs who help the needy kids. Hustle is important, and so is smartness.
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