South Africa is one of the more poorly-performing countries with regards to entrepreneurial activity. 9.1% of the South African population are in the process of setting up a business or have started a business that is less than 3½ years old.
Even though this figure is low, increasing the number of entrepreneurs will not automatically lead to economic growth.
According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) Report, developing economies specifically need a healthy percentage of high-expectation entrepreneurs, which is an entrepreneur that plans on starting a business that will employ at least 20 people.
High growth entrepreneurs have been shown to generate the new jobs, wealth and taxes in the economy.
Programme to produce better ‘treps
Pitch & Polish has been established to help solve this crisis in South Africa by developing a programme that helps entrepreneurs become more successful.
This is a forward-thinking and strategic approach to stimulate entrepreneurial activity. The purpose of Pitch & Polish is to nurture businesses. In concordance with the GEM report, they believe that establishing businesses within smaller communities there will be job creation, poverty alleviation and economic growth.
Business incubators such as Raizcorp and Sasol ChemCity play a pivotal role in stimulating entrepreneurship. Channelling the transfer of knowledge between established big businesses and emerging small enterprises can be solved with programmes such as Pitch & Polish.
How to make a ‘trep
Creating high-growth entrepreneurs is no easy task. Entrepreneurs need to be able to sell their ideas, raise funding and communicate effectively.
Research has shown that 82% of the best entrepreneurs in the world are the main salesperson in their organisation. Unfortunately the large majority of entrepreneurs in South Africa don’t know how to pitch their ideas, business and themselves.
Pitch & Polish aims to address this problem by teaching entrepreneurs to deepen their understanding of their business and then to sell the idea. It is an interactive learning experience with instant feedback on how to better present their businesses. These real world skills are invaluable to any entrepreneur trying to start and grow a successful business.
“Pitch & Polish is the application of theory. There is an abundance of talent and innovation in smaller towns, and these entrepreneurs need access to knowledge in order to analyse their business and determine its viability. Then to be able to communicate their vision and strengths to seize opportunities that present themselves,” says Allon Raiz, a World Economic Forum member and CEO of Raizcorp.