Meet Bheki Dube, a young skateboarder and photographer who, thanks to his two passions, has come to know the inner workings of Joburg intimately. It was this knowledge that led to a great opportunity being presented to Dube in mid 2011.
“I was approached by a patron of Bioscope, where I worked in Maboneng Precinct, to start tours that showcased the city.” The patron, Greg Solick, had a vision to showcase the inner city not only for tourists, but for Joburgers who want to reconnect with the vibrant city — but he needed a partner who understood the area and its history.
It was an opportunity Dube did not allow to pass him by. He started working with Solick in August 2011, and by December was running it alone. “I did a six-week tourism course to prepare myself, read as much about Joburg as I could, and added photography to the tour, so our guests walk away with artistic photos of themselves in the heart of the city.”
Today Solick is a silent partner and Dube employs two more tour guides. The business is growing, and all without any start-up capital. “We have five tours which we make sure are unique and special, and word-of-mouth has ensured we have a continuous stream of customers. Maboneng’s website and blog are also a great help, but it’s our passion that makes people spread the word.
“You can be at the right place at the right time, but what you do with the opportunity is important. I grabbed it with both hands. It was a way to put my skills, knowledge and love of the city to good use, and make something sustainable for myself.”
- Player: Bheki Dube
- Company: Main Street Walks
- Est: 2011
- X-Factor: Using inherent skills, passion and knowledge to create a viable business.
- Contact: www.mainstreetwalks.co.za; +27 (0)72 880 9583