Wednesday, 06 October 2021
Johannesburg: Investing in small businesses is critical to stimulating the country’s economic growth and alleviating poverty.
This is according to Eskom Development Foundation Chief Executive, Cecil Ramonotsi.
In support of small businesses, Eskom is encouraging small business owners to enter the power utility’s Business Investment Competition which closes at the end of this month.
The annual competition targets black-owned small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs).
“This year, as many young black entrepreneurs as possible with registered businesses that are two years or older are encouraged to participate. Youth-owned enterprises require major investment and mentorship. Thus, Eskom focuses on boosting, rewarding, and empowering growing businesses.
“In the South African context, development of black entrepreneurs is key to bolstering the country’s socio-economic growth and alleviating the prevailing poverty, crime, domestic violence, and other challenges within our communities,” Ramonotsi said.
Entry requirements for the competition include 100% black owned small businesses that operate in the engineering, construction, manufacturing, agriculture and agri-processing or trade and services sectors.
Prize money of at least R300 000 is up for grabs for the overall winner with R131 250 for winners in different sectors.
The first and second runners-up will each receive R75 000 and R50 000.
Ramonotsi added that public and private investment in SMMEs would go a long way to “ensure sustainable and inclusive economic growth, particularly in the townships and other marginalised communities”.
“Eskom is well aware of the concerted effort required to ensure inclusive economic participation. Our 2021 Business Investment Competition is intended to support black youth entrepreneurs with access to finance, as well as through skills and capacity building so that they are able to pivot the harsh economic environment brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
The Business Investment Competition is open for entries and will close at midnight on 31 October, 2021.