Enlightening panel discussion
Panel guests included thought-leaders and entrepreneurs such as Thebe Ikalafeng, Chichi Maponya, Sizwe Dhlomo and Nkhensani Nkosi. These entrepreneurs participated in a roundtable discussion to share their first-hand experiences, challenges and insights into the science behind successful small businesses.
Choose to support SMEs
“We want everyone in South Africa to make a conscious choice to support a small business,” says Sibongiseni Ngundze: managing executive of Retail Relationship Banking at Nedbank.
Following the launch on 19 July, small business owners are increasingly making use of the free online portal, SimplyBiz.
“Hits on this site, which aims to equip small business owners to market their product, network with peers and access discounted or free tools have increased substantially,“ adds Ngundze.
Based on a US model
Small Business Friday was inspired by Small Business Saturday, a successful initiative started in the US by American Express in 2010. Going into its third year, Small Business Saturday successfully tapped into the tremendous passion for local small businesses among American consumers, public officials, community organisations, chambers of commerce and corporate partners who recognise the important role small businesses play in fuelling the economy.
“We are delighted to learn from American Express’ experience in the US. Based on their example, this year was focused on creating awareness and making a mark in the calendar. We are happy that we have achieved this goal and now have the foundation from which to grow this movement in years to come. Nedbank encourages the private sector, government and the community at large to travel this journey with us and to play their role in supporting small business owners for the benefit of all in South Africa.” Ngundze concludes.