Owls Toy Barn

Owls Toy Barn is a new, niche neighbourhood toy store in Lakeside, Cape Town that offers a variety of educational and recreational specialty toys. The shop owners pride themselves on supporting local toymakers, and prefer to sell toys that aren’t the norm in chain stores. Some of the brands that they stock include Brio, Playmobile, Brio Project Balsa Planes, Pegasus and Melissa and Doug. Run by husband and wife team Sabri and Lynn Samsodien, it was Lynn’s dream to own a toy store, and with their entrepreneurial spirit, and a bit of inspiration from their little girl they decided to take the plunge and open doors in June 2014.

Starting a new business comes with its own set of risks and challenges, and cost was top of mind when looking at card payment facilities. After launching with a POS solution that came with a monthly rental fee, the Samsodiens quickly moved to ZipZap after hearing about the mobile POS solution from another small business owner. Because the couple had also decided against a landline to avoid unnecessary costs, ZipZap fitted the bill perfectly; no landline required or monthly rentals.

Sabri says. “I love technology, and it really has made things so simple. The set-up was quick and easy. You don’t need to be technical, and if you can use a smartphone, you can use ZipZap.”

He says that they did have a few teething problems, but were met by exceptionally helpful staff who were always on the ball, and quick to sort the glitches out whenever dealing with the support centre.

Sabri is adamant that sales would be lost without a card machine. He also believes – as the stats confirm – that customers spend much more when purchasing with a card. Sabri concludes, “ZipZap is always a talking point amongst customers. People are in awe of the technology, and even the older generation who are often a bit sceptical have come to enjoy the customer experience.”