One of the best things about working with 3C Software for 8 years, building cost models for manufacturing companies, was that I got to learn how "big companies" manage their cost. It is no different from how a small company does it; Reduce expenses, eliminate waste, and improve efficiencies. I went through my things and found leftover oils, fragrance and jars, a hand mixer, ladles, and stainless steel pans, and the foldable table I used in my kitchen in Atlanta when I started experimenting. Better put, items from my "R&D lab". I did an inventory of items and went through my recipes to figure out which products I could make with those items. I found some fragrance and ingredient companies locally but their minimum order quantities were far above what my struggling savings account could handle. After doing some math, I realized it would be cheaper for me to order smaller quantities of the ingredients from the US, to maintain product quality, and have them shipped to Accra, with a 3 month lead time. I took everything I had left in my savings and ordered the items. This was July 2014 and I knew there was no turning back. But I needed space for production. This is where my family barter system came in handy. I was already living rent-free so I didn't want to seem greedy. So I offered to clean my brother's garage on condition that, whatever space I create, will be my production space. He agreed. The result is what you see in the picture attached. My mini-side-kick niece Renee was so excited to be part of it, she called it my factory. I believe her excitement gave me hope that this could become something, someday.