Entrepreneur Connect Africa is a platform aimed at using digital as an opportunity to foster dialogues around job creation and showcase inspiring SME’s whose stories seldom get told in main stream media.
Looking at the critical issues facing South Africans right now which includes the lack of job opportunities and continued high unemployment is of a growing concern. Despite these challenges formidable, unwavering South African Entrepreneurs continue to impact social economic change through job creation in business models that have staying power.
“The opportunity to profile uncelebrated Entrepreneurs whose stories remain untold has motivated our JT Comms networks to create disruptive platforms that allows us to tell the Entrepreneur story digitally so as to connect to wider ecosystems, ” says Vanessa Perumal architect of a pioneering platform which holds promise to offer dynamic business lessons from leading trailblazers.
With South Africa’s entrepreneurial penetration now at its highest level since 2013, the global entrepreneurship monitor’s (GEM) details in its 2017/2018 report, that the total early-stage entrepreneurial activity (TEA) in South Africa is at 11.0%, 4.1 percentage points higher compared to 2016’s score of 6.9%. Also in 2017, StatsSA reported that 39% of unemployed South Africans had never worked before. And among youth, that figure was 60.3%.
In the third quarter of 2017, 30% of South Africa’s 10.3 million youths aged 15-25 were not in employment, education or training. The number of youths neither learning nor engaged in income-generating activities has risen from two million in 1996.
Further, chronic unemployment is also a quandary among older workers, many of whom have been unemployed for five years or more. Among 50-65-year-olds, this was true of 47.4%. By the fourth quarter of 2017, the overall expanded unemployment rate had declined by 0.5 percentage points, but was still 36.3% at national level. The world average is 7.9%.
With an strong desire to make a dent and redress on these horrifying stats, Deshun Deysel on ‘Entrepreneur Connect Dialogue’ invites us in conversation to ponder as to how we can use entrepreneurship to help reduce the rate of unemployment.
The first season of the weekly nine episode online business programme features commentary and offering insights on all diverse aspects of entrepreneurship, business and economic news, as well as educational interviews with leading business influencers and entrepreneurs.
Through this series Deshun who is the world’s first Black female high altitude mountaineer unpacks relevant everyday business topics in a warm and engaging style -covering all topics that pertain to the entrepreneurial journey, with subjects ranging from finance, BEE scores, challenges with funding to the latest trends on how to get a better cash flow system.
Speaking to entrepreneurs both still starting out and established, the first season of the show features an exciting line up of interviews with people such as Mankwane Chakela, founder and owner of Le Looks, a high-end hair studio with over five branches spread over Johannesburg. Media innovator, Busi Ntuli, whose passion for African content and exposure led her to found Trans Africa Radio, an online radio station which only plays African music. Kgomotso Sediane, MD of Khabane Majestic Holdings; a software development company that implements and perfects IT strategy by using different UX techniques and Catherine Lund who established OnQ Research, a full service South African based Clinical Research Organisation which data manages and conducts clinical trials all over the continent to understand the subtleties and nuances of conducting clinical research in different African countries.
“Often business and finance are viewed as exclusive only to a few, however with ECD, we want to take viewers, particularly entrepreneurs and those who aspire to embark on this route on a journey that will teach and simplify more about such subject that affects their daily lives,” enthuses Deshun Deysel, host of the first season of Entrepreneur Connect Dialogues.
Using her acclaimed skills and highly sought after expertise as an international speaker and business coach, Deysel who herself is an entrepreneur, runs an international entity, Deshun Deysel & Associates which lists some Fortune 500 companies and disruptive start-ups as clients; D&A provides business and executive coaching to a new breed of digitally savvy leaders.
Produced by JT Comms TV, Entrepreneur Connect Dialogues can be seen on JT Comms TV on Tube. The show is currently planning its second season and open to showcasing entrepreneurs across our country and continent and offers opportunities for big business looking to improve their BB-BEE score cards, partner with entrepreneurs and help scale small businesses.
Off The Beaten Track
What Tourism Month means in South Africa and how Mango Airlines is focusing on local opportunities.
This September, being Tourism Month, we have so much to talk about in South Africa, and so many people to engage with, both domestically and abroad. We are privileged to be able to leverage a broad range of destinations – arguably world-class in nature, and they expand way beyond a beautiful mountain, and an ecosystem of game.
The vast majority of leisure tourists, however, remain attracted to the Mother City and various Safari destination, while business tourists tend to stick to hub cities for short durations of time before departing again.
“There is a golden opportunity to expand on the same offerings – while not detracting from them in any way. Our responsibility is to drive tourism into new areas, really emphasising the differentiators that are incredibly attractive to local and international tourists,” said Benediction Zubane, Head of Marketing at Mango Airlines.
“Often tourists visit one of the more well-known sites in an area, and are completely unaware of the other features and destinations close by. We’re seeing a lot of success in township tourism which goes to show how diversifying can really drive new tourism opportunities,” explained Zubane.
According to Statistics South Africa survey on Tourism and Migration, nearly 3.5 million international travellers visited South Africa in August 2017. Top numbers were tourists from USA, UK, Germany, France and The Netherlands, with African visitors primarily coming from SADC countries. Zubane added, “This means there is vast opportunity to begin engaging with travellers in new countries across the globe. We need to become our own best ambassador, talking-up our famous and lesser known destinations, proudly showcases our uniqueness. We should also be tourists in our own country and start exploring the wonders of the Rainbow Nation.”
Mango is passionate about helping its SMEs and entrepreneurial community to successfully overcome the unique challenges facing the tourism industry: “There has never been a more opportune time for small businesses and entrepreneurs to benefit positively from tourism in South Africa, and we hope to celebrate alongside our SME community as they fly high – both literally and figuratively,” he concludes.
FNB Receives 50 Million US-Dollars To Accelerate SME Development
First National Bank puts their focus on SME development in South Africa.
First National Bank (FNB) has received 50 million US-dollars from the DEG – Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft to deploy towards small and medium enterprise (SME) development in South Africa.
DEG is a development finance institution whose mission is to promote private-sector enterprises in developing and emerging-market countries as a contribution to sustainable growth and improved living conditions.
Mike Vacy-Lyle, CEO of FNB Business says: “The new line of funding contributes to our ongoing efforts to accelerate our contribution to SME development in South Africa. We believe that SMEs are key to stimulating sustainable economic growth and job creation. Our intervention in SME development is not only limited to funding, we also invest heavily to improve capacity and supplier development capabilities in small businesses.”
FNB continues to pioneer products and services that have taken the angst out of South Africa’s entrepreneurs, from providing free instant accounting services to online documents reservation services, and forming public-private partnerships to digitise the registration of businesses.
“Our message to entrepreneurs is that we remain committed to providing meaningful solutions to help them grow. We have exciting developments that will take us further in our journey, all aimed at advancing the SME agenda by taking the anguish out of doing business,” concludes Vacy-Lyle.
A Conversation With Yourself Could Change Your Life
Thami Buti is a 24-year-old South African actor. He is amongst the 46% of South Africans between 20 and 50 years, who have no savings at all. He’s probably one of 90% of people who will retire with less than 50% of their income.
Except none of this is true for Thami, because he’s had a conversation with himself – at six different ages – in Sanlam’s new educational campaign.
In Sanlam’s Conversations with Yourself campaign, Thami gets transformed into a 20, 30, 50, 65 and 80-year-old (actor Hlumelo Mzimkulu plays the 10-year-old) called YOU. And over a series of conversations, these characters in their different age brackets sit and share wisdom on life’s ‘what ifs.’ Disrupting the traditional approach to ‘finance talk’, the central idea is this: what if you could learn everything you need to know about life, from yourself? What if 65 year-old you could tell you – at age 20 – to stop buying so many cappuccinos and to invest more into an RA? And 30-year-old you could ask you at 80 how many kids you have – and how you afford to give them the lifestyle and opportunities you want for them?
Sonja Sanders, Head of Marketing and Client Experience at Sanlam Personal Finance, says each of the seven Conversations with Yourself films uses humour and insight to broach a different topic – and presents the accompanying product solve. “For example, the Conversation on Life and Retirement tackles retirement in a completely new way. Planning for retirement is often not a priority when you’re young. But what if you knew only 6% of South Africans are able to cover their monthly expenses once they retire? And what if you could ask your 65-year-old self whether you are one of the 6%? Would 20-year-old you still take that year off? Would you at age 30 still buy that flashy car?”
Using banter to bring home the fact that today’s decisions will define life when you’re older, the script takes a notoriously low-interest topic and makes it relatable.
The same goes for the highly sensitive topic of death, which no one wants to talk about — undoubtedly a problem in a country with an average age of death that stands at 64 years, and where 40% of the workforce is more likely to have cell phone insurance than life insurance.
Sanders says, “Conversations with Yourself takes an idea we’ve all had to the next level: The wish to fast-track into the future to see if our lives worked out the way we expected. Ultimately, you are your own partner in life. Everything you do now either benefits your future or jeopardises it. It’s often too daunting to imagine one’s future-self. But Conversations with Yourself connects the future to the present, and makes the experience real and impactful.”
Related: How To Start Saving Money Today
South Africa’s problematic savings culture has been well documented. In the retirement space, Sanlam’s Benchmark research has identified millennials as the generation most at risk of having insufficient savings, mainly due to their DIY approach to money matters, their mistrust of financial service institutions and the fact that they don’t identify with retirement as a goal. It’s a generation known for overconfidence despite their poor financial literacy. Millennials prefer self-directed advice – so what better way to deliver it than through a ‘conversation with yourself’?
“As WealthsmithsTM, Sanlam wants to empower people with the knowledge and tools to enable them to make positive financial decisions today. This should set them up for success both now and into the future. Conversations with Yourself helps people to appreciate that the planning they do today has significant implications for their future self. Ultimately, the campaign uses progressive storytelling to share a story to which any generation can relate. The story of you,” concludes Sanders.
Visit Conversationswithyourself to watch the films and start your own conversation.
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