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Bokang Seritsane: A Maverick Mindset

Local entrepreneur sets himself apart as a solutions crafter, deal closer and supporter of young entrepreneurs.

Nadine Todd




Vital Stats

Bokang Seritsane began his entrepreneurial journey as a salesman working for other entrepreneurs. He didn’t know it at the time, but he was grooming himself to eventually launch his own business.

Related: The Midas Touch: Hina Kassam & Irfan Pardesi

“As a salesperson, you’re responsible for your own sales and turnover,” he says. “You need to craft a strategy for your clients as well, so what they do and their needs dictate how you approach them and structure your offering. In my case, I sold advertising.

“Marketing managers can spend their budgets without your assistance, so you need to create a need to ensure they spend with you – and translate that need into a service. It was an excellent foundation for entrepreneurship, as that’s exactly what business owners do – find a client need and fill it.”

As an entrepreneur, Seritsane needed to find gaps, create solutions and commercialise them, but soon found that you often need one deal to close the next ten. “Closing that first deal is often what undoes a start-up. You need clients to attract clients.”

Sertisane’s advice?


Invest in doing work for free. “It might sound counter-intuitive, particularly as you don’t want to set a precedent of doing work for free, but often that first “no” is because your potential big client is unsure of your work ethic or ability to deliver – and you don’t have a track record yet. Offering to do the work for free for three or even six months has two advantages:

“You’re able to prove that you live up to your pitch, and it lends credibility to your subsequent pitches because you can show you’re doing work for a large corporate. It obviously affects your bottom line, but as long as you work with integrity and deliver what you promise, you’ll be building a relationship with a great long-term client.”

Family and friends started asking Seritsane for business advice, which ultimately inspired him to launch Under35Mavericks, a business that builds up young entrepreneurs through its Maverick Mindset Programme.

“The programme is funded through corporate ED funds, so before I could officially launch it, I needed the right relationships in place and to have proved myself as a trusted partner. It took longer to launch, but I’m now working off a much more sustainable base.”

Celebrating SA’s Hot young entrepreneurs

Seritsane has hit on an innovative way to celebrate young South African entrepreneurs while also gaining brand traction with the inaugural Maverick Awards.


Related: Clem Sunter’s Take on the Entrepreneurial Economy

As South Africa’s first youth entrepreneurship excellence awards, the Maverick Awards recognise, acknowledge and celebrate entrepreneurial genius and prowess displayed by young, hard-nosed entrepreneurs who are rising up to local challenges and building great businesses as a result.

Visit for more information.

Nadine Todd is the Managing Editor of Entrepreneur Magazine, the How-To guide for growing businesses. Find her on Google+.


27 Of The Richest People In South Africa

Here are 27 of South Africa’s richest people, but how did they achieve this level of wealth? Find out here.

Nicole Crampton



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Learn the secrets of SA’s most successful business people, here is the list of the 27 richest people in South Africa:

In a world with growing entrepreneurship success stories, victory is often measured in terms of money. The feat of achieving a place on this list is, however, years of hard work, determination and persistence. “One has to set high standards… I can never be happy with mediocre performance,” advises Patrice Motsepe.

From the individuals that made the 27 of the richest people in South Africa list, actual entrepreneurs and self-made business people dominate the list; while those who inherited their fortunes have gone on to do even bigger and better things with their wealth. Over the years, some have slipped off the list, while others continue to climb higher and higher each year.

  1. Elisabeth Bradley
  2. Sharon Wapnick
  3. Bridgette Radebe
  4. Irene Charnley
  5. Wendy Ackerman
  6. Paul Harris
  7. Wendy Appelbaum
  8. Mark Shuttleworth
  9. Desmond Sacco
  10. Giovanni Ravazzotti
  11. Markus Jooste
  12. Gus Attridge
  13. Gerrit Thomas Ferreira
  14. Cyril Ramaphosa
  15. Adrian Gore
  16. Raymond Ackerman
  17. Michiel Le Roux
  18. Lauritz Dippenaar
  19. Jannie Mouton
  20. Stephen Saad
  21. Patrice Motsepe
  22. Allan Gray
  23. Koos Bekker
  24. Ivan Glasenberg
  25. Christoffel Wiese
  26. Johann Rupert
  27. Nicky Oppenheimer
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Watch List: 50 Top SA Black Entrepreneurs To Watch

South Africa needs more entrepreneurs to build businesses that can make a positive impact on the economy. These up-and-coming black entrepreneurs are showing how it can be done.

Nicole Crampton



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Early-stage South African entrepreneurial activity is at an all-time high of 11%, according to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, and entrepreneurial intentions have also increased to 11.7%. With both activity and intentions growing significantly year-on-year, there are more businesses opening up around South Africa than ever before.

The increase in entrepreneurship has seen the rise of more black entrepreneurs across numerous sectors. From beauty brands to legal services and even tech start-ups, these are 50 top black entrepreneurs to watch:

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Watch List: 50 Top SA Small Businesses To Watch

Keep your finger on the pulse of the start-up space by using our comprehensive list of SA small business to watch.

Nicole Crampton



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Entrepreneurship in South Africa is at an all-time high. According to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), total early-stage entrepreneurial activity has increased by 4.1% to 11% in 2017/2018. This means numerous new, exciting and promising small businesses are launching and growing.

To ensure you know who the innovative trailblazers are in the start-up and small business space, here are 50 of South Africa’s top establishing companies to watch, in no particular order:

  1. Livestock Wealth
  2. The Lazy Makoti
  3. Aerobuddies
  4. Mimi Women
  5. i-Pay
  6. AfriTorch Digital
  7. Akili Labs
  8. Native Décor
  9. Aerobotics
  10. Quality Solutions
  11. EM Guidance
  12. Kahvé Road
  13. HSE Matters
  14. VA Virtual Assistant
  15. Famram Solutions and Famram Foundation
  16. BioTech Africa
  17. Brand LAIKI
  18. Plus Fab
  19. LifeQ
  20. Organico
  21. 10dot
  22. Lenoma Legal
  23. Nkukhu-Box
  24. Benji + Moon
  25. Beonics
  26. Brett Naicker Wines
  27. Khalala
  28. Legal Legends
  29. The Power Woman Project
  30. Aviro Health
  31. AnaStellar Brands
  32. Data Innovator
  33. Fo-Sho
  34. Oolala Collection Club
  35. Recomed
  36. VoiceMap
  37. ClockWork
  38. Empty Trips
  39. Vula Mobile
  40. SwiitchBeauty
  41. Pineapple
  42. The Katy Valentine Collection
  43. OfferZen
  44. KHULA
  45. Incitech
  46. Pimp my Book
  47. ART Technologies and ART Call Management
  48. Prosperiprop
  49. WAXIT
  50. The Sun Exchange
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