The decision by Moody’s on Friday, 25 November 2016, to leave South Africa’s sovereign credit rating unchanged at two notches above junk status is another welcome reprieve, providing an extended window to rebuild confidence in the country and improve its economic prospects before the next ratings reviews next year.
This is according to Old Mutual Investment Group Chief Economist, Rian le Roux, who points out that now there is a better chance that S&P will also leave the rating unchanged this week.
Fitch’s decision to keep SA’s sovereign rating unchanged at one level above non-investment grade, but changing the outlook from stable to negative, is an indication that a downgrade to non-investment grade is possible unless prospects for the economy improve materially, and underpins government’s intended longer term fiscal consolidation.
Le Roux believes that while SA’s ratings from Moody’s and Fitch remains in investment grade for now, the longer term risk is still that, failing a material improvement in SA’s economic growth prospects through growth-enhancing structural reforms, SA could be subjected to multiple downgrades. Such an outcome could cause capital flight, a slump of the Rand, an inflation surge and will leave the Reserve Bank with no choice but to raise interest rates further.
“As agencies typically first change the outlook, before actually changing the rating, the negative ratings from all three agencies imply that the urgency has increased for SA to get its’ economic and fiscal house in order,” he explains.
“The implication is that SA will need to work harder to implement structural reforms to restore confidence and encourage investment.”
In its review, Moody’s noted the strength of South African institutions that support the investment grade rating, citing the public prosecutor dropping charges against Pravin Gordhan and the public protectors State of Capture report as positive developments. But, it also lists a number of concerns including political infighting, low growth and unemployment, which it believes pose the greatest risks to the South African economy.
Le Roux says that the most significant risk in the short term remains whether or not S&P, which currently has South Africa at one level above junk status, will downgrade its sovereign rating to sub-investment grade.
“S&P might give SA another reprieve, as there have been a number of positive developments over the past few months, over and above the ones mentioned by Moody’s. These include strong and growing societal opposition to corruption and mismanagement in the public sector, a solid commitment to fiscal consolidation in the Medium-term Budget, a welcome lack of disruptive strike action, a much improved rainfall season, growing confidence that the economy is past the cyclical low, reduced upward pressure on local interest rates and a strong indication from government that corrective action at a number of state-owned enterprises has moved up the policy priority agenda,” he says.
However, Le Roux believes that S&P could downgrade SA’s local credit rating – currently three levels above non-investment grade – next week, on account of the rising interest burden of government debt and the fact that fiscal flexibility is still constrained.
He adds that the past six months have seen little in terms of policy reforms and this keeps the risk of an actual downgrade by S&P alive.
“The recent announcement on the suggested minimum wage does create a bit more certainty about the issue, despite strong opposing views and further negotiations still to be conducted,” he explains.
“There have been indications that announcements could soon be made on the mining charter and labour reforms, creating some more policy certainty, but the timing is uncertain and it is obviously still uncertain as to whether the nature of these reforms will satisfy the agency.”
Another concern is the uncertainty around how S&P views SA’s institutional strength – currently sitting at a neutral rating. “If they change this to negative on account of the political tensions concerning the Finance Minister and concerns over the broad direction of economic policy, then they could downgrade us. However, we don’t believe at this stage that they will.”
The Start-up Hatchery And Greater Tygerberg Partnership Launch Innovative Pitch Competition For Bellville Solutions
Entrants are required to submit their ideas in a 30-second WhatsApp video to 082 936 7544 before 24 May 2018.
The Greater Tygerberg Partnership (GTP) and start-up incubator The Startup Hatchery are launching a pitching competition to surface innovative ideas that, when implemented, could lead to the improvement of Bellville in Cape Town’s northern suburbs. The winning idea will receive a package of business incubation, mentorship, business development support, marketing and branding collateral, legal and intellectual property advice and other prizes, including R5 000 cash.
Launching on 14 May 2018, Innovate Bellville 2.0 is open to new businesses that have been operating for six months or less, who are developing new innovative ideas that could improve public transport, create jobs, create inclusive public spaces, address homelessness, improve health and wellbeing, manage waste, facilitate mobility, attract and retain investment and regenerate the Bellville urban centre.
Innovate Bellville 2.0 forms part of the GTP’s living lab approach to the regeneration of the Bellville CBD, says Warren Hewitt, CEO of the GTP: “We want Bellville to be a test-bed for new ideas that can help us to build a vibrant, prosperous, inclusive city region. Innovate Bellville 2.0 falls directly into that approach. We’re looking forward to seeing the ideas that emerge, and seeing the winning idea implemented in a part of our city that stands on the edge of an exciting future.”
“Innovation starts anywhere,” says Tania Cunningham, Chief Digital and Marketing Officer for The Startup Hatchery, “but we were very excited at the prospect of focusing on finding innovative ideas that could bring about real change to a defined geographical area. Innovate Bellville 2.0 will offer the winning business a solid start in life, with a chance to see their idea become a reality in Bellville.”
Entrants are required to submit their ideas in a 30-second WhatsApp video to 082 936 7544 before 24 May 2018. Twenty semi-finalists will be selected from the WhatsApp pitches, who will each receive training and a pitch deck. From that group, a group of eight finalists will then be selected and invited to pitch their ideas to judges during a pitch event on 7 June.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Silulo Business Incubation Is Changing The Future Of Entrepreneurs
Silulo Business Incubation is a unique incubation aimed at empowering and assisting upcoming entrepreneurs.
Launched in April 2018, the Silulo Business Incubation is a unique incubation aimed at empowering and assisting upcoming entrepreneurs to grow not only their businesses but also their confidence in the business space. The Incubation offers office space, boardrooms, training and conference rooms as well as eighteen shared office space for entrepreneurs in and around Cape Town.
Founder and Director, Mr Luvuyo Rani says: “We have always had a vision for this type of centre – a one-stop-shop where all entrepreneurial needs are catered for but our problem was always funding. With hard-work and dedication, we were able to make our vision a reality, which is exactly what we want to teach and instil for our entrepreneurs.”
The incubation will also offer networking sessions for aspiring entrepreneurs twice a month for two hours. This idea is to offer business insights as well as networking opportunities for entrepreneurs in and around Cape Town. Entrepreneurs will have the option to become members of the SBI Network where they are able to attend networking sessions of their choice. All networking sessions will cover different topics and training manuals will be offered after each session.
“The main challenge when it comes to this type of business is infrastructure and funding. Silulo is a pioneer and it can go anywhere, there are no boundaries in business. This is a flagship store. We want to replicate this in every province. Silulo’s success lies in partnerships and our business has a passion for empowering.”
Rani, a former teacher, together with his brother Lonwabo Rani started selling computers from the boot of a car more than ten years ago. Silulo Technologies now has 42 branches in three provinces: the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Kwa-Zulu Natal and 22 franchise stores, some of which are owned by former Silulo employees.
Director and Co-founder, Lonwabo Rani says: “My brother always tells us to think about the bigger picture. It was that bigger picture that kept us going. Back in 2006, what you see today is exactly how it was when we envisioned it.”
In 2017 Silulo reached a total of 35 000 students trained since inception. It trained 65 students through MIC SETA in both the Eastern and Western Cape.
Rani and his two directors remodelled the business in 2017 by offering a walk in cellphone repair service (including the service of leading brands such as Apple, Samsung and Huawei) at one of the Silulo branches in Khayelitsha.
Rani, who was part of the Team South Africa to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland in 2018, has received numerous accolades for his social impact business.
He was also awarded a Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2016 among his many accolades.
DJ Sbu Opens Academy To Develop Hustlers
DJ Sbu also known as Sbusiso Leope has partnered with the 3Sixty Financial Services Group (360 FSG) to positively impact thousands of young lives and families in South Africa with his own school, a learning academy. Aptly titled The Hustlers Academy.
DJ Sbu also known as Sbusiso Leope has partnered with the 3Sixty Financial Services Group (360 FSG) to positively impact thousands of young lives and families in South Africa with his own school, a learning academy. Aptly titled The Hustlers Academy. Leope intends to develop the minds and the ability of thousands of young hustlers in the country and change lives.
The Hustlers Academy is an independent privately funded economic empowerment project spearheaded by Leope to address the overwhelming lack of jobs and incumbent graduates into the system on an annual basis. The 360 FSG is a well-established financial services company with a disruptive strategy that offers clients more benefits for their rand. The partnership represents a meeting of the minds and the hearts for the development of opportunities for young South Africans.
“We will train and educate young hustlers to either be entrepreneurs or corporate hustlers. Our training programme and academy curriculum will produce the best sales force this country has seen and develop the minds of Hustlers to understand how the world works and how to stand out. In partnership with 360 FSG we will develop entrepreneurs who start businesses and employ teams of hustlers within an 18-month period. ‘The Hustlers Academy’ will take in Hustlers for training nationally in multiple provinces providing a practical and theoretical intervention in the lives of those who are skilled and restless.” Said Leope.
Group CEO and Chairman of 360 FSG, Mr. Khandani Msibi is confident that ‘The Hustlers Academy’ will play a game-changing role in developing and changing the way corporates are structured in providing a ceiling for employees as far as earnings are concerned.
“Our approach to empowerment is based on sustainability for the Hustlers who make it through the academy. We will develop people mentally as well as financially and make a serious change in their socio economic position. DJ Sbu has the potential to influence a generation and he shows this on a daily basis with his determination to succeed. We are matching his determination and passion for economic empowerment with our backing of the ‘The Hustlers Academy’project. We look forward to changing thousands of lives with a long term impact.” Said Mr. Msibi
‘The Hustlers Academy’ is active and running a pilot group of Hustlers through its programme in Johannesburg. The academy welcomes registrations on its webapp www.hustlersacademy.co.za. Starting from 1st June 2018 The Hustlers Academy will be taking in 50 – 100 hustlers per month.
Leope goes on to say. “In 2013 we started an educational company called Leadership 2020 which was designed to develop Africa’s richest asset – its people. I’m excited that we are able to realise our vision before the year 2020 with the launch of this initiative. ‘The Hustlers Academy’ will grow to add multiple courses, mentorship, and accreditations and even lead people to formal education if they so wish. This academy will make a tangible socio – economic difference in young South African lives. ‘The Hustlers Academy’ has no registration fees and requires no learning fees. It requires you, your time, your commitment and there’s #NOVILAPHING – Lazy people will not make it.”
Registrations are online at: www.hustlersacademy.co.za
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