“We speak about creating jobs, but what we need to concentrate on is creating business growth. Jobs will be a natural consequence if we do that,” said Ezra Ndwandwe, creator of the Big Break Legacy, a hot new entrepreneurial reality TV show that premiers on SABC 2 tonight at 19.30.
When compared to The Apprentice, Ndwandwe had only one comment: “The Apprentice is looking for an employee. Big Break Legacy is looking for an employer.”
Which sums up the goal of the show perfectly. The 12 entrepreneurs who have been selected were chosen because their businesses and business ideas could potentially grow the economy. “We aren’t looking for a me-too business,” said Ndwandwe. “We want to support ground-breaking initiatives that open new economic avenues.”
At the end of the 13-week show, one entrepreneur will walk away with R5 million to grow their business, but the effects of educating and involving South Africa’s budding entrepreneurs who are watching the show will hopefully be far reaching.
Big business supporting SME growth
As one of the main sponsors and advocates of a show that promises to inspire South African entrepreneurs to start thinking creatively beyond the ordinary and to lead the creation of new industries, MTN Business is proud to fuel the spirit of entrepreneurship through the The Big Break Legacy.
“The Big Break Legacy is a great source of pride for us, and certainly we are excited about the airing and impact the show will have on SA audiences,” says Nomalanga Nkosi, GM of Business Segments at MTN South Africa. “For MTN Business this is not just a sponsorship, it’s a philosophy. The Big Break represents opportunity, inspiration and more importantly recognises ordinary South Africans that have determination, gusto and a can-do and will-do attitude in a very strong format.”
In addition to the overall prize of R5 million worth of investment into the winner’s business, MTN Business will also be providing the business connectivity during the course of the show – allowing the contestants to complete each task. MTN Business has provided each contestant with a laptop, a Samsung Galaxy Ace mobile device, R200 worth of airtime, a mini router and 500MB of data.
“This country is full of entrepreneurs which I believe fosters incredible growth for our country; it’s a unique global position. It’s at this exact point that MTN Business believes its corporate support can help to enable such realisation. Therefore, SME support is a key mantra to the MTN Business brand and hence sponsoring The Big Break was another opportunity for us to align our brand as support custodians to this important sector,” said Nkosi.
For MTN Business helping the SME sector is a 3 step approach, with each step directly impact and enabling the next.
- Step 1: Access to resources. It’s critical that corporate SA step up to the plate, and assist the SME sector with viable, openly available resources – whether advise or financial related.
- Step 2: Develop a culture of growth and sustainable business. SMEs need a fine balance between support and own capability. The scales cannot be unbalanced to the other extreme either – whereby the SME relies solely on corporate input or funding. The corporate must draw the line and facilitate sustainable business practices.
- Step 3: Getting the above two steps right will enable a gateway to a self sufficient society. By igniting a culture of entrepreneurship, it will have a fundamental impact on job creation, skills development and global trading.
“In many ways, The Big Break Legacy is a perfect example of following the above steps. It’s not simply a financial commitment, but it’s an opportunity realised for all the contestants (aimed at both existing ventures that need re-capitalisation for growth or a new high impact business idea),” adds Nkosi. “Not only does it promote a sustainable business model, but more so, it’s a fundamental platform to foster a local mindset change for other budding entrepreneurs (by watching the live shows and being able to vote and interact when appropriate).”
The first episode of the Big Break Legacy will air on 2 February 2012 on SABC 2 at 19h30.
Entrepreneur will be introducing the various contestants over the course of the next two weeks.