By Neelam Rahim
South Africa’s economy mainly depends on Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises. SMMEs are the most significant sector to offer services to both the public and private sectors to provide citizens with habitable and sustainable livelihoods. However, the capability of SMMEs to operate sustainable businesses is a challenge because of a lack of business development acumen, ability to develop tools to compete in the market and training aligned to the needs of the end users, specifically within the Built Environment space.
The National Construction Incubator is now establishing a branch in Dobsonville in Soweto, and Radio Islam International speaks to the CFO, Sandile Matiwane.
According to Sandile, Construction is an umbrella under which many things fall. We are looking to offer to build professional environmental incubation. We are also looking at construction programmes, including localisation for all SMMEs manufacturing localised products.
He says the aim is to mentor them and provide much-needed assistance in bridging the gaps from starting up to the market.
For the BEP, the Build Environmental Professionals, 15 graduates are to be sourced. For the construction mentorship programme, 20 graduates and the localisation programme, 20 graduates. Sixty-five graduates in total are to be sourced for training, he added.
According to Sandile, in a nutshell, it is found that people who enter the programme from zero to the end of the programme are now a fully-fledged business. They can take on the market and its challenges.
He says the first preference will go to Soweto-based SMMEs. However, depending on the criteria that we use. I would say that people from the outside should not be demotivated and apply because after the first preference is given to Soweto-based SMMEs, we will move on to others.
Listen to the full interview on Radio Islam’s podcast below.