Big leap for small busi­ness gazelles

CityPress - - News - SIPHO MA­SONDO sipho.ma­sondo@city­press.co.za

Small busi­ness gu­rus have lauded Min­is­ter of Small Busi­ness De­vel­op­ment Lindiwe Zulu’s ini­tia­tive to sup­port high-po­ten­tial small and medium-sized busi­nesses.

The pro­gramme – known as the Pres­i­dent’s Gazelles – will give 40 small busi­nesses with high-growth po­ten­tial sup­port to cre­ate em­ploy­ment and ex­pand quickly. Zulu launched the ini­tia­tive in Johannesbu­rg early this week. Its launch in South Africa is the brain­child of Thami Mazwai, a res­i­dent ex­ec­u­tive at the Wits Busi­ness School, and ad­junct pro­fes­sor at the univer­si­ties of Fort Hare and the Western Cape.

Mazwai said re­search showed that de­vel­oped coun­tries sup­ported and propped up es­tab­lished small busi­nesses. South Africa, on the other hand, sup­ported start-ups – which had a high fail­ure rate.

The gazelles, he said, “will get spe­cialised, high-pow­ered sup­port to be sure they don’t col­lapse. They’ll also take ad­van­tage of the state’s di­rec­tive that 30% of its busi­ness goes to small busi­nesses.”

Wel­com­ing the ini­tia­tive, Busi­ness Part­ners MD Nazeem Martin said: “Gazelles grow much quicker and make a big­ger im­pact on erad­i­cat­ing un­em­ploy­ment and poor eco­nomic growth.”

He said a gazelle was a small busi­ness with the po­ten­tial to grow by more than 20% each year for more than three years.

“It started in the US about 15 years ago. These busi­nesses get spe­cial at­ten­tion and re­ceive love, care and tech­ni­cal as­sis­tance.”

Zulu said Ernst & Young and KPMG would se­lect the 40 gazelles from 200 iden­ti­fied small and medium-sized busi­nesses.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.