Ian Henderson, CTO of Rubric South Africa, says consumers are more likely to buy a product with information in their own language.
Why local language matters
According to research from Common Sense Advisory:
- 72.4% of consumers are more likely to buy a product with information in their own language
- English is spoken as a first language by less than 5% of the world’s population
- English is spoken as a second language by only 470 million to 1 billion
- In South Africa, English is the official language that predominates, and yet it is spoken as a first language by only 9.6% of people, compared to isiZulu (22.7%), isiXhosa (16%) and Afrikaans (13.5%).
Language lessons learnt
Already, leading South African companies are immersing themselves in the real Africa – including Business Connection, Vodacom, MTN, Checkers and Nandos. These front-runners are learning hard-won language lessons.
Gear up for greater effort. Translators in Europe and the Far East have it relatively easy. Terms like ‘IP address’ or ‘software’ have been thrashed out, codified and are available with the minimum of Internet-based research.
Not so in Africa. A huge amount of grind is needed to unearth local language translations for many modern concepts. Many African languages have not even been committed to books.
The way to get around this is to partner with a language services provider that understands local conditions and has built up and trained an extensive network of translators, skilled in using modern translation technology.
Take care of quality. Community translation initiatives and projects such as those under the auspices of the African Network for Localisation do fantastic work at heeding commercial and language preservation goals.
Make sure your localisation partner has the skills to test and ensure the quality of translations to avoid missing the mark or, even worse, causing offence.
Develop for – and by – Africans. Localisation isn’t only about adapting to the language and cultural sensitivity of a specific country, but also about the value of a local footprint to tap into unique local thinking.
Pay-as-you-go originated in a country with a very different world view from developed markets – South Africa. And M-PESA was developed by Kenyans, for Kenyans living and working abroad, as well as for other African diaspora.
Start small, but plan to scale. It’s good to start small, but look to the future. 20 years ago, Toshiba started its multinational ambitions with translations in three languages. Today, with competitive pressure from HP and Dell, the company translates into 24.
Localisation: It’s not just manuals
A few rudimentary checks before you get started:
- When entering a new market, consider more than your literature – how will you deal with local-language support calls?
- Consider your customer segment – do you serve businesses or consumers? For the former, English may suffice.
- Plan long-term – for now, the bilingual person in your office may be enough, but for your next software release, translation automation by way of a database of phrases is the way to overcome this.
- Get clean – experience has taught us that fragmentation is bad when multiple translations are under way. Quality assurance of the master document will flow through to every subsequent translation in the same format. Before embarking on translations, clean up the English document first.
- Ensure compliance with local regulations that have an impact on the text – such as business approval, foreign exchange, electric Type Approval etc.
President Ramaphosa To Address SA’s Biggest Board Meeting, The Directors Event
President Cyril Ramaphosa will be delivering a keynote address at The Directors event on 8 June 2018, at the Sandton Convention Centre.
President Cyril Ramaphosa will be delivering the keynote address at South Africa’s biggest board meeting, The Directors Event, which will take place at the Sandton Convention Centre on 8 June 2018. Dr Jabu Mabuza, Chairman of Business Leadership South Africa will deliver this year’s Chairman’s Report.
Now in its fourth year, The Directors Event invites industry leaders to unpack three issues of national importance and discuss solutions in a public forum, moderated by highly-respected media personalities.
Youth employment & entrepreneurship, the use of technology to promote inclusive growth, and our political economy will be hot topics in this year’s highly focussed discussion programme which attracts participation from the country’s most prominent business and government leaders, and an audience of 300 ‘board member’ delegates.
“We are honoured to have President Ramaphosa address this important gathering of some of the top minds in South Africa. We invited him as a response to the call he made during his maiden State of the Nation Address earlier this year, calling on all South Africans, in their small corners, to help develop this country. We believe, strongly, that corporate South Africa has a massive role to play and we are very excited that everyone seems to have accepted the President Ramaphosa’s “Thuma Mina” call,” says Bongani Siqoko, editor of the Sunday Times.
Nontokozo Madonsela, Chief Marketing Officer of MMI, the JSE listed holding company for Momentum, Metropolitan and other financial services providers says, “We are incredibly honoured and excited that President Cyril Ramaphosa will be delivering the keynote address at this year’s Biggest Board Meeting. Over the past few months, we have experienced a wave of change in the country that has brought with it much needed confidence in what we can achieve. As a company with deep roots in South Africa serving a broad spectrum of citizens and businesses, we are heeding the President’s call to lend a hand in addressing our challenges. We are saying #CountUsIn, we want to be there. We believe this platform creates a space where we can have constructive dialogue and come up with concrete solutions that can positively contribute to improving the state our country”.
President Ramaphosa will be the highest ranking government official to address The Directors Event with his keynote message. Previous keynote speakers at The Directors Event have included Caroline Galvan (Lead Economist & Editor: Africa Competitiveness Report for the World Economic Forum), and Mcebisi Jonas (Former Deputy Minister of Finance).
Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, Minister of Science & Technology, and Enoch Godongwana, Chairperson of the ANC sub-committee on Economic Transformation will also be representing the perspectives of Government and the governing party during the round-table discussions at this year’s event.
The Directors Event programme is tailored for corporates, SMEs, educators, and non-profit organisations who are serious about turning South Africa’s socio-economic crisis around.
The Directors Event will take place at the Sandton Convention Centre on 8 June 2018. To view the 2018 agenda, speaker profiles, or to book tickets: www.thedirectorsevent.co.za
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 email@example.com
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.
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