As unemployment reaches a ten-year high in South Africa, it is evident that companies and business leaders have a clear role to play in nurturing the next generation of wealth and job creators.
The question remains, how do you get the 25 percent unemployed people, and some 15 million people not involved in economic inactive members of South Africa into employment?
This is the current scale of the challenge facing our country as we tackle solutions to this seemingly grim problem. True, solving this conundrum will require action across both the public and private sectors, with a two-pronged approach. First, they need create more jobs and give young people the skills and confidence to fill them.
The good news is that the issue of youth unemployment is top of mind for the South African Breweries. In this, the 21st Anniversary of their Kickstart programme, the company has at its heart the goal of increasing employment, and encouraging entrepreneurship is core to these efforts.
“Entrepreneurs play a vital role in job creation and providing opportunities to young people,” says Simphiwe Mntambo, Enterprise Development Specialist (Youth Business) at SAB Kickstart.
“Entrepreneurship is not only about allowing young people to follow their dreams and start their own businesses, it’s about fostering this ambition an giving them the tools to do this,” she imparts.
“We believe that through SAB Kickstart we will see a significant change in the youth employment statistics.”
“Create Businesses That Thrive, Not Just Survive”
Entrepreneurship in South Africa is not a foreign concept, but the true challenge lies in capacity and the ability to build the dream. “The challenge now is to provide these dynamic young people with the support and the environment they need to turn their ambitions into reality,” says Mntambo.
“We have seen that most entrepreneurs struggle with attracting adequate capital into their enterprises and the skill to utilise this capital well due to an inability to strategically operationalise specific financial and business growth requirements and needs of their enterprises for the long term. The challenge now is to provide these dynamic young people with the support and the environment they need to turn their ambitions into reality,” says Octavius Phukubye, SAB Manager Enterprise Development.
South Africa, in general, is plagued by poor entrepreneurship and meagre education standards and a weak knowledge economy, which ultimately perpetuates socio-economic inequalities.
“Take for example that our country’s quality of Maths and Science education is ranked #144 in world,” shares Mntambo.
The Government recognises the SME sector as engine for economic growth and reducing unemployment, and they estimate by 2020 this sector will reduce unemployment by 10%.
Furthermore, government and communities are seeking more value from private sector empowerment initiatives, thus placing pressure on corporates to devise bold moves that change the game for economic transformation.
SAB Kickstart affords SAB and its entrepreneurs the opportunity to make a genuine contribution towards the national vision, indicated by the National Development Plan, of creating one million jobs by 2030 through involvement of big business and the power of entrepreneurship.
Nine Entrepreneurs Taken Under SAB KickStart’s Wing
Nine emerging entrepreneurs went through a rigorous selection process and on May 5, 2016; SAB KickStart announced the 2016 candidates who received mentorship and training to further develop their business ventures.
The annual SAB KickStart, initiative has been empowering young business minds for over two decades, while the programme is interested in developing and ensuring the sustainability of small businesses.
The SAB KickStart finalists and their business will be conscientiously monitored throughout the year and their mentorship structured to best suit their changing business needs.
The entrepreneurs were:
- Silindile Dube, 31, owner of Duo Glass
- Pravashen Naidoo, 33, owner of eWaste Africa
- Brian Ramufhufhi, 35, owner of Mukhwama Manufacturing
- Thuli Radebe, 29, owner of Eyam Projects
- Philip Ndamase, 30, owner of Ndamase Investments
- Noluthando Buthelezi, 35, owner of Tropical Island
- Donal Valoyi, 30, owner of Zulzi
- Inga Vanga, 33, owner of Inga Vanqa Quantity Surveyors
- Mamorajane Lephoto, 31, owner of Lephotho Farmeries .
Contributing Toward the NDP for 2030
Each of the entrepreneurs selected operate within key industries identified at a national level by government as having the greatest potential to create jobs at the level required to lower the country’s unemployment rate.
The core industries and sectors are:
- Agriculture and Food Processing
- Renewable Energy
- Mining and Minerals
- Science and Electronics
- Pharmaceuticals and Cosmetics
- Arts and Crafts
- Metal Fabrication
- Clothing and Footwear.
Eligible business should also be operational for a minimum of 18 months and not more than 5 years, be in the post-revenue stage (sales made and concept proven), generate less than R5 million in revenue per annum, employ a maximum of 15 employees (temporary or full-time or a combination), be at least 50% black owned and managed, and demonstrate high growth potential that is scalable, with a sustainable competitive advantage.
The key objective of SAB KickStart and its model of business development support is to ensure that the small medium enterprises thrive rather than merely survive. This support creates an enabling environment in which young entrepreneurs are able to assist others in becoming economically active.
Related: New Ways SMEs Can Find Funding
SAB Kickstart Boost affords SAB and its entrepreneurs the opportunity to make a genuine contribution towards the national vision, indicated in the National Development Plan, of creating one million jobs by 2030 through involvement of big business and the power of entrepreneurship.
This is aligned to SAB’s targeted approach towards building strong South African communities is outlined in its global sustainable development framework, Prosper.
One of the strategy’s key imperatives is aimed at accelerating growth and social development through its value chains by supporting more than 30,000 small enterprises through it various enterprise development initiatives, including, SAB KickStart.
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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