Get your busi­ness OFF THE GROUND

Themba Mkandla gives you tips to help you suc­ceed


Send your ques­tions to Themba Mkandla at tmk­con­sult@, SMS +27 79070 4395 or tweet him at @tmk­con­sult Q HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BE REG­IS­TERED ON THE CEN­TRAL SUP­PLIER DATA­BASE TO BE ABLE TO BE­COME A SUP­PLIER TO GOVERN­MENT AND THE MU­NIC­I­PAL­ITY IN MY AREA?


A Reg­is­ter your com­pany on the cen­tral sup­plier data­base on https://se­ As soon as you have cap­tured your in­for­ma­tion on the sys­tem and sub­mit­ted it online, your ac­count should be ac­ti­vated within 24 hours.

To get mu­nic­i­pal work in your area, you need to reg­is­ter on their sup­plier data­base on and build re­la­tion­ships with people who work in the sup­ply chain depart­ment. Keep in touch with their of­fice by vis­it­ing them reg­u­larly to check on what is avail­able. Check their no­tice boards where they post ten­ders. Reg­is­ter on their web­site to re­ceive no­ti­fi­ca­tions of new ten­ders. Q



A Start by talking to people who work for clean­ing com­pa­nies and hear what they do, the chal­lenges they face ev­ery­day and how they solve them. Talk to busi­nesses that use clean­ing ser­vices com­pa­nies. Ask them what they like most about the clean­ing com­pa­nies they use, what they don’t like and what im­prove­ments they would like to see hap­pen­ing. Use that in­for­ma­tion to de­velop a ser­vice pack­age that talks specif­i­cally to what they want to see im­proved. Write down 10 com­pa­nies that you want to work with, ap­proach them with your pack­age and maybe of­fer them a trial ser­vice at a dis­counted price. Q I'M IN­TER­ESTED IN OPEN­ING A PRESCHOOL IN MY COM­MU­NITY. WHAT STEPS DO I NEED TO FOLLOW TO AP­PLY FOR FUND­ING?

KGOTHATSO MOTAUNG, KOMATIPOORT A En­trepreneurs nor­mally use the re­sources that they have to start their busi­nesses. Use your home to see if there is de­mand for your ser­vices. If you don’t have space, look for a home­owner who has space and see if you can part­ner with them. Part­ner­ing will save you from pay­ing rent.

If you have some money, you can rent a house and use it for your busi­ness. Sell your ser­vice to par­ents. When you start, talking to par­ents works bet­ter than just ad­ver­tis­ing.

Early child­hood de­vel­op­ment cen­tres are sen­si­tive be­cause chil­dren are in­volved. Reg­is­ter your cen­tre with the Depart­ment of So­cial De­vel­op­ment. Visit their of­fices and ask for the depart­ment that deals with early child­hood de­vel­op­ment.

The Depart­ment of So­cial De­vel­op­ment also sub­sidises early child­hood de­vel­op­ment cen­tres in low-in­come ar­eas. Find out how you can ap­ply for a sub­sidy for your cen­tre. Q I WOULD LIKE TO OPEN A BAK­ING BUSI­NESS IN MY AREA AND I NEED HELP WITH DRAFT­ING A BUSI­NESS PLAN AND AP­PLY­ING FOR FUND­ING.


A Where do people buy their bread right now? Why would they buy your bread? It could be fresher, maybe they don’t have to travel to buy their bread, your bread could be made from qual­ity in­gre­di­ents or it could taste bet­ter.

Hus­tle and get a stove to make your first sam­ples of bread. Get info on used stoves from news­pa­per clas­si­fieds and auc­tions. Al­ter­na­tively, look for some­one with a good stove and part­ner with them in the busi­ness. If you can’t part­ner with them, you could ask to use their stove for a fee.

Make sam­ples of your bread. When you are happy with the sam­ples, tell your neigh­bours and friends. Give them your sam­ples on con­sign­ment, mean­ing ask the shop own­ers to give you shelf space. When people buy your prod­uct, the store own­ers can sub­tract their com­mis­sion. This should help you test your mar­ket to see if they love your bread. If they do like your bread, reg­is­ter your busi­ness, get some­one to help you put to­gether a good busi­ness plan and take it to fun­ders to get money to buy bet­ter and big­ger stoves.

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