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Growthpoint partners with government to give property entrepreneurs a boost

The Department of Small Business Development (DSBD) is joining forces with Property Point, a Growthpoint Properties initiative, to develop more small businesses for South Africa’s property sector.

DSBD has allocated a R5 million grant to Property Point for a one-year small business development programme as part of its Enterprise Incubation Programme (EIP).

This breakthrough initiative is the first public-private partnership of its kind in the property sector. It will develop 16 small businesses in the property sector of which two-thirds are youth- and woman-owned.

Shawn Theunissen, head of Property Point and head of Corporate Social Responsibility for Growthpoint Properties, says: “Property Point’s objective has always been to contribute to South Africa’s economic growth. Using a best practice model, we have delivered positive results in the property sector for the last decade. Now, our new partnership with government will escalate our impact on transforming the economy at a crucial time when South Africa is dealing with high employment and low economic growth.”

President Cyril Rhamaphosa said in his recent State of the Nation speech: “Ultimately, the growth of our economy will be sustained by small businesses, as is the case in many countries. It is our shared responsibility to grow this vital sector of the economy. We will work with our social partners to build a small business support ecosystem that assists, nourishes and promotes entrepreneurs.”

Property Point has been a driver of transformation and small business growth within the South African property industry in the 10 years since it was founded by Growthpoint in 2008.

Already, it has created 2066 jobs and R842 million in procurement opportunities generated for the 130 SMEs that have participated in its two-year incubation programmes. These small businesses have reported 43% growth in revenue.

The partnership with government leverages Property Point’s deep-rooted success in growing competitive small businesses in the property sector over the last 10 years and expands it for bigger impacts on small enterprise development, job creation, economic growth and a more inclusive economy for South Africa.

The country’s recent budget speech also stressed: “Government must create an enabling environment for small businesses to thrive, as they are an important lever to create jobs and grow the economy inclusively. Work is being done to provide crucial funding to innovative small businesses when they need it most. A fund with an allocation of R2.1 billion over the medium term is being developed between the Departments of Small Businesses, Science and Technology and the National Treasury to benefit small and medium enterprises during the early start-up phase – this is an area that has historically had limited support because of the risks involved… Another important constraint for small business is lack of market access and barriers to entry. To resolve this, our competition authorities continue to do the necessary and important work of addressing barriers to entry and rooting out anti-competitive behaviour which slows economic growth and dynamism.”

For this unique 16-business intake, Property Point’s programme is powerfully market driven. It will raise the profile of the entrepreneurs and strengthen their competitiveness, with a deep focus on market integration.

The programme aims to create market linkages for these small businesses that will see them included in procurement opportunities in the broader property sector, as well as Growthpoint. It is expected to set new benchmarks for small business integration into private sector supply chains.

Estienne de Klerk, CEO of Growthpoint South Africa, says: “As a hands-on property owner – we own and manage our buildings – we recognise our unique position to develop small businesses to increase their access to market opportunities. We are proud to contribute to this pioneering public-private partnership designed to deliver on South Africa’s transformation, small business, economic growth and job creation objectives.”

Property Point also collaborates with like-minded businesses and organisations across the sector to achieve the shared goals of building sustainable, competitive, small businesses and a vibrant culture of entrepreneurship and enterprise growth.

It enjoys a well-established and growing partnership with JSE-listed Attacq Limited. Since 2014, Property Point has tailor-made supplier and enterprise development programmes for Attacq to empower entrepreneurs and link small businesses into Attacq’s supply chain.

Theunissen concludes: “Together, Property Point and its partners in both the public and private sector will continue to make a positive contribution to South Africa’s property sector and play a vital role in stimulating and transforming the economy as a whole.”

Author: Property Point.

Image: Shawn Theunissen, head of Property Point and head of Corporate Social Responsibility for Growthpoint Properties.

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Polishing your business pitch

Engen Petroleum and Nedbank have partnered with Raizcorp to bring the ENGEN Pitch & Polish programme to cities and towns across South Africa, for the eighth time. The programme helps to educate and grow entrepreneurs.  It teaches entrepreneurs how to polish their business pitch in order to obtain funding.

What type of Pitcher are you?


Pitching your business is an essential skill to master in order to grow your business. And, if you want to grow your business, you must be able to pitch it successfully. The way you say things is as important as what you actually say – and could mean the difference between attaining the investment needed – or being turned away. No matter the result, every opportunity to pitch is an opportunity to get better!


Now in their eighth year of listening to entrepreneurial pitches, ENGEN Pitch & Polish, in association with Engen Petroleum, Nedbank and Raizcorp, have identified six distinct pitching types. Which one are you?


The first three types fall into the category of ‘content pitchers’. These types are either getting it wrong – or right – from a content point of view.


The Investor-Ready Pitcher

  • You are the ideal pitcher! Your business case is clear with a defined product or service, which is ready to be taken to customers.
  • You have done your market research and can prove that people want what you are offering.
  • Your sums add up and you can demonstrate a clear Return on Investment (ROI).


The Salesman

  • Your pitch is purely sales-focused, with a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach.
  • Investors want to see the real you and understand your business – they are far more interested in you, than your product or service.
  • Be real and be honest.


The Technician

  • Technicians only want to speak about the finer details of their product or service. They use too much jargon and technical terminology. The result is that the investors’ attention is lost as they stop listening.
  • Investors need the whole picture to make the ultimate decision.
  • Focus your pitch on how your business is going to make money.


The next three types fall into the category of ‘style pitchers’. These types are, unfortunately, getting it wrong from a style point of view! When you are confident in what you are saying, you will come across as authentic, credible and authoritative in your field.


The Floor-Gazing Dancer

  • These pitchers are so nervous they can’t look the investor in the eye. Instead, they stare at the floor and tend to move from side to side.
  • This pitch is hard work for an investor as the movement is dizzying and lack of eye-contact alienating.
  • Resolve to make a concerted effort to stand straight and look people in the eyes.


The Mumbler

  • The mumbler speaks incoherently and softly.
  • If investors cannot hear your pitch, they aren’t going to invest in your business.
  • Practice is key to gaining confidence in yourself and what you are saying. Record your pitch and listen to yourself. Become aware of your fillers and replace them with pauses.


The Racing Driver

  • You speak so fast that it is difficult to grasp your business offering and model.
  • This can intrigue an investor if spoken with confidence. However, it often leads to an ineffective pitch.
  • Refine your pitch. Shorten it and select places to breathe and connect with the investors. Plan your pauses. Enunciate clearly.


No matter the content, or style, of your pitch, a good pitch tells a story and a good story needs refining and rehearsal. As Alan Shannon, head of Nedbank Relationship Banking Sales, says “anything that distracts the audience from your message makes the message less effective.” To learn how to hook your audience, by creating your best business pitch, come to the ENGEN Pitch & Polish workshop and competition.

Author: Engen Pitch and Polish


For a list of this year’s workshops, and to experience the magic of ENGEN Pitch & Polish for yourself, visit

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MZANSIPRENEUR Q&A: Aramex Drop Box the perfect delivery solution for small business

Always on the look-out for great solutions that take the hassle out of running a business, MZANSIPRENEUR spoke to the folks at Aramex Drop Box about their nation-wide and international delivery service.

  1. Tell us about the Aramex Drop Box.

Aramex Drop Box is a store-to-door courier service located in over 540 participating Pick n Pay and FreshStop stores nation-wide.

  1. Where in the country does Aramex offer these services? And for how much?

For just R99, you can send a parcel to ANY destination in South Africa. For R299, loose documents can be delivered to any destination worldwide.

  1. What parcels/objects can be delivered through the service?

Drop Box is the ideal option for sending documents, parcels and gifts throughout SA, as well as for sending loose documents internationally.

  1. What is the process involved in sending a parcel?

Drop Box is super simple to use in 3 easy steps:

  • Buy a pack from participating Pick n Pay or FreshStop stores
  • Following the easy instructions on the pack, complete the waybill (a form) and insert it into the pouch on the courier sleeve
  • Drop the package into the Aramex Drop Box. We’ll collect Monday – Friday at 15h00 (unless specified otherwise) and deliver in no time!
  1. How long do deliveries take?

Drop Box is an express courier service for main centre deliveries so packages are delivered by 12h00 the following business day. Packages sent to outlying areas are delivered within 1 – 3 business days.

  1. Can I use my credit card?

Drop Box packs can be purchased from participating Pick n Pay and FreshStop stores using credit cards, debit cards or cash. No payment is required from the receiver of the parcel.

  1. In what ways could Aramex Drop Box be beneficial to small businesses and start-up online stores?
  • It is a fixed cost of R99 to send shipments nationwide with Aramex Drop Box – there are no month-end surprises when it comes to your courier bill.
  • Drop Box delivers overnight to main centres – urgent packages can be sent for only R99.
  • Drop Boxes are conveniently located in over 540 Pick n Pay and FreshStop stores nationwide – packages are dropped in the Drop Box and there is no need to be available for a courier collection.
  • All parcels can be tracked on our website.

Visit for more information and to find your nearest Drop Box location.

[Sponsored Post]

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Trends for entrepreneurs to look out for in 2017

In 2017, an economic climate more conducive to entrepreneurship will prevail, though tinged by uncertainty on the local and international front. Check out this interview as I discuss some of the trends to look out for in coming months: CNBC Africa interview

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Anheuser-Busch InBev wins over South African government

Anheuser-Busch InBev released a media statement yesterday on its negotiations with the South African government on its proposed take-over of SAB Miller. The Competition Commission has an extension until the 05 May to conclude its investigation of this transaction and make recommendations to the Competition Tribunal to either approve it with or without conditions, or block it.

According to the statement:

‘An agreed approach has been concluded between the South African Government and Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (“AB InBev”) in relation to the public interest conditions that will be recommended to the Competition Commission and Competition Tribunal in connection with the proposed acquisition of SABMiller plc (“SABMiller”) by AB InBev. The package of commitments addresses employment, localisation of production and inputs used in the production of beer and cider, empowerment in the company, long-term commitments to South Africa and participation of small beer brewers in the local market.’

The commitments include:

  • R1bn investment to support small-holder farmers as well as to promote enterprise development; local manufacturing, exports and jobs; the reduction of the harmful use of alcohol (including making available locally produced low and no-alcohol choices for consumers) and green and water-saving technologies. Part of this fund will finance 800 new emerging farmers and 20 new commercial farmers to produce barley, hops, maize and malt for the company, with the strategic intent to create additional jobs in the agricultural supply chain.
  • No involuntary job losses in South Africa as a result of the transaction
  • The company will maintain its total permanent employment levels in South Africa as at the date of closing, for a period of five years
  • The company will work government to reduce the harmful use of alcohol, including through introducing and promoting no-alcohol and lower alcohol products, including through brewing these products locally where possible.
  • The company will maintain South African Breweries’ current Zenzele BEE share-scheme until the scheme expires in 2020, and within two years of deal closure, outline its long-term empowerment commitments beyond 2020
  • AB InBev’s regional head-office for Africa will be located in Johannesburg
  • AB InBev already has a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange
  • The company will support the participation of small craft-beer producers in local markets

Minister of Economic Development Ebrahim Patel is quoted as saying “South African Breweries – the SABMiller predecessor – has been an important company in the South African economy for many years. This transaction is by far the largest yet to be considered by the competition authorities and it is important that South Africans know that the takeover of a local iconic company will bring tangible benefits. Jobs and inclusive growth are the central concerns in our economy. Our competition laws specifically provide for consideration of the employment and public interest impact of mergers and acquisitions. Following the announcement of the proposed acquisition of SABMiller, the South African government carefully evaluated the likely impact on jobs, small businesses, farmers and economic empowerment. We engaged with AB InBev to identify commitments that can ensure that the transaction has a net benefit for the country. The commitments made by the company are the most extensive merger-specific undertakings made to date in a large merger. In our view, they meet the requirements of the competition legislation. The agreed terms will be placed before the competition authorities for consideration.”

Carlos Brito, CEO of AB InBev added: “We are pleased to have reached this agreement with the South African Government. As we have stated from the outset, we are excited about the growth opportunities and the role South Africa will play in our combined business. Recognizing South African Breweries’ important contributions to South Africa’s economy and society, our commitments seek to build on this deep heritage and we believe there is a huge amount that the two companies can achieve together to the benefit of all stakeholders.”

The company says that the agreement above will be provided to the Competition Commission for consideration as part of its assessment of the competition and public interest impact of the proposed acquisition. That assessment will culminate in a recommendation by the Commission to the Competition Tribunal.

See the rest of the statement here