Boost for SA’s small businesses

Cindy Preller

SERIOUS ABOUT JOBS: Absa's David Maphakisa and Small Business Chamber CEO Mike Anderson. Picture: JUDY DE VEGA
SERIOUS ABOUT JOBS: Absa’s David Maphakisa and Small Business Chamber CEO Mike Anderson. Picture: JUDY DE VEGA

THE government and banking institutions want entrepreneurs to succeed. This is the opinion of Absa Enterprise Banking provincial head David Maphakisa, who said Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s budget announcement made it clear the government wanted to remove as much red tape as possible in order for small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) to be competitive in the market.

Gordhan on Wednesday announced R6.6-billion support for small businesses, easing the compliance burden on small businesses and restructuring their tax regimes.

He also committed government institutions who do business with SMMEs to make payments within 30 days.

Similarly, Maphakisa said Absa committed R750-million to development funding over three years, of which R250-million this year “was there for the taking”.

Maphakisa was one of the speakers at a seminar – Think beyond a job, create your own – for small business owners and entrepreneurs held at the Boardwalk Convention Centre yesterday.

It was part of a national road show, which ends in Cape Town today.

“I may have all the money, but you hold the key to the safe. It is your business idea that is the key to getting access to the funding,” Maphakisa said.

Small enterprises were one of the major drivers of the SA economy, and one of the largest creators of jobs, he said.

SMMEs should focus on preferential procurement, as there was a R210-billion procurement shortfall in the country and it was one of the BEEE scorecard requirements, along with enterprise development, he said.

National Small Business Chamber founder Mike Anderson inspired entrepreneurs, saying: “I do not care about the budget, taxes and other changes … We should know about it, and take note of it, but no matter what it is, we will conquer it.”

Having an attitude of resilience was one of the most important attributes an entrepreneur needed, he said.

“Natural talent is irrelevant to great success. All an entrepreneur needs is clear vision, a burning desire and a willingness to fail.”

Anderson said it was important for entrepreneurs to be confident, to set small goals and to think of new ways of doing things.

“The single biggest reason why people do not become entrepreneurs is because they are afraid to fail. Only 5% of people achieve their life goals. The other 95% are blind conformists, so get out of your comfort zone and innovate.”


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