USAID Tunisia JOBS' support for Montapi, a woman-owned fiber arts company in Beja, is helping the business boost online sales and provide critical jobs for underserved women.
Founded in 1998 by entrepreneur Jalila Jlouli, Montapi specializes in traditional and modern carpets and rugs, all produced by rural craftswomen. Its designs are popular at local markets and retailers, with many final buyers being European tourists.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Montapi struggled financially as tourism to Tunisia plummeted and many national trade fairs were called off. To help it sustain business during this difficult time, JOBS provided website development and digital marketing support, enabling it to expand its market reach and generate more online sales. In 2020, more than 70% of Montapi’s orders came from its web platform and social media.
To further aid the company’s recovery, JOBS awarded Montapi a grant through the COVID-19 Enterprise Recovery Fund to purchase raw materials, such as wool, linen, and silk-blended yarn, helping it to fill backlogged orders and sustain 18 jobs. As a result, Montapi was able to increase sales and create 25 new jobs, including two communications positions, providing rural women with steady incomes and new professional opportunities.