INHLANYELO FUND GIVING SMES LIFELINE
IN promoting the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) sector in the country, Inhlanyelo Fund is supporting over 50 vendors who are bringing food to the table for their families and sending their children to school.
This was confirmed by Inhlanyelo Fund Chief Executive Officer Wandile Kunene, who said the organisation annually funds more than 50 market vendors based in Lobamba and Mbabane mostly.
At the beginning of the year, market vendors visit the organisation to borrow money, which is to be used as working capital payable with an annual fixed interest of 15 per cent. The interest is the lowest compared to what other financial institutions charge.
Maybel Mndzebele, one of the market vendors selling fruit and vegetables at Lobamba bus rank, said the funds they receive from the organisation are able to assist them to balance business from personal needs. She said with the funds, the working environment becomes friendlier.
“When we receive the money, we are able to buy high quality stock for our markets, the interest is not high and also we are able to pay the money in instalments, which makes it easy to pay it back” she said.
Mndzebele said after receiving the working capital loan, they are able to use the profits they made the previous year to financially prepare for the opening of schools in January.
She added that they are able to buy school uniforms, as well as pay for school fees.
The vendor has been using funds from the organisation for more than two years. She first received a loan of E4 000 in 2017 then E8 000 in 2018.
Mndzebele said working as a vendor selling fruit and vegetables at a bus rank is very competitive. She said one requires having fresh quality stock on a daily basis in order to attract customers.
“Working as a market vendor requires one to be vigilant, and most importantly, make sure that the customer is satisfied at all times so that they can come back.
‘There are more than 10 people selling similar products at similar prices, so you have to make sure you have quality stock” she said.
POSE: Vendors funded by Inhlanyelo Fund posing for a picture with Nathan Kirsh (middle), Lobamba Bucopho Vusi Mavuso (4th l) andIndvuna Paulos Malaza (l). LEFT - MY SHOP: Maybel Mndzebele seated next to her market.