Maria Leoni, an alumni of the Faculty of Public Health (FKM) Class of 2005, Diponegoro University (Undip) is currently working in the business of woven fabrics. Together with her husband, Leoni founded a weaving business called Kainratu.
Before becoming an entrepreneur, Maria Leoni worked as a teller at a bank. With 2 years experience as a bank teller, Leoni then helped her husband start a woven fabric business. With a husband whose family background is a weaver, Leoni decided to help her husband’s business. “After graduating from college, I worked at Bank Syariah Mandiri as a bank teller for 2 years. Then I resigned and helped my husband to start a woven fabric business,” said Leoni when contacted by the Undip Public Relations team, on Saturday (14/05).
With the brand of KAINRATU, which has been registered with the Ministry of Law and Human Rights since 2017, Leoni and her husband developed the business. At the beginning of starting her business, Leoni had encountered obstacles. But with her passion, support, and consistency, these obstacles can be overcome. Currently, Leoni serves as Manager of the Business to Business Division which manages orders from several government and private agencies.
Since they are used to working in an office, the beginning of implementation of the business is still not optimal. However Leoni continued to be consistent in working on the woven fabric business. Her husband assigned her as the Manager of the Business to Business Division to handle orders from agencies or from companies, including procurement of uniforms, custom motifs, or procurement of souvenirs. “We work from the scratch until we become Bank Indonesia’s cultivation MSMEs. I have followed the curation (selection) and have been under the guidance of Bank Indonesia until now, from 2020 to 2022. Alhamdulillah yesterday we received a gift from Bank Indonesia as the most active MSMEs,” Leoni explained.
Since 2020, Kainratu has become one of the MSMEs assisted by KPw Bank Indonesia, Central Java Province, which has now succeeded in becoming an MSME that is able to penetrate the export market. “I also handle exports. Currently, exports have reached New Zealand, Houston, Oman, Australia, Finland, these are independent exports. While exporting through third parties, we send our products to the United Kingdom, France, and Singapore,” she explained.
“We have been sending our products throughout Indonesia because the marketing is through online media, such as website kainratu.co.id and www.tokotenun.com. We also market them through the official Youtube channel of Kainratu Tenun and Toko Tenun. So we create educational content about woven fabrics. The buyers from abroad usually know Kainratu from Youtube videos,” continued Leoni.
In addition, with her woven fabric business Leoni has succeeded in creating job opportunities for the surrounding community. “For permanent employees there are 5 and the others are temporary workers. There are several partners with tailors around the place of business. Apart from making our own, we also foster many weavers in the village of Troso Jepara,” she explained.
With the knowledge and experience that Leoni has gained as an Undip student, it becomes a very important provision in the world of work. “My friends were not only from the city of Semarang, they were from various cities in Indonesia. I encountered several different characters, so it increased my enthusiasm for studying in college. In addition, I gain knowledge and skills that I can apply in the world of work. Even though my work was not in accordance with the field of science when I was in college, I felt that my knowledge and experience during college became my provision to be applied in the world of work,” Leoni said.
“The message for the younger generation of Undip graduates is that successful people are not relaxed and relaxed people are not successful. So if you want to be successful, work hard, sketch a big dream and make it your motivation,” she concluded.