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Local is lekker!

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Local is Lekker!

LEA showcase home-grown businesses

The Local Enterprise Authority (LEA) recently hosted members of the media on a two-day tour covering Bobonong, Molalatau and Selibe Phikwe.

The idea was to showcase some of the enterprises supported by LEA and to document their journeys to date.

SANCTIFIED DELIGHTS BAKERY

Nestled deep in Bobonong’s Dandane ward, with the Matshekge Hill looming large in the background, the bakery is famous for its fresh bread and fancy cakes.

Now in its third year of existence, the business has risen impressively since 29-year-old Botsile Moreba first set-up shop, baking pre-ordered cakes from home.

Desperate to expand his business, Moreba approached the

Local is lekker!
BRILLIANT BAKER: Moreba

Youth Development Fund (YDF), who backed the young entrepreneur to the tune of P97, 000.

The brilliant baker then sought the assistance of LEA, who helped Moreba write-up a detailed business plan, which he submitted to CEDA in 2018.

The agency’s response came back positive, along with a P700, 000 loan, spent on bigger, better equipment.

Part of LEA’s support included holding workshops at the bakery, training Moreba and his eight staff members on the importance of customer service, manufacturing practices and record keeping.

Sanctified Delights’ customer base consists of individuals, schools, tuck shops, Bobonong Cooperative as well as catering for private functions, such as weddings and parties.

A loaf costs P6 while buns sell for P1 each. The enterprise has a daily capacity of 800 loaves, depending on orders and walk-in customers.

Open seven days a week, on average Moreba rakes in P75, 000 every month.

However, despite the impressive numbers, it is not all plain sailing.

“Some of the challenges are that we cannot get a bigger space where we can operate the business. Also the government pays us late even though we always submit invoices well in time. We agreed on a maximum period of two weeks but it does not happen that way!” grumbled Moreba, who inherited his love of cooking from his mother.

LIT-SHINE CHEMICAL SOLUTIONS PTY LTD

Based in Selibe Phikwe’s Industrial location, the company specialises in cleaning detergents, manufacturing a range of products, including: pine gel, dishwashing liquid, car and carpet shampoos, multi purpose cleaner and pool acid.

The operation is the brainchild of 34-year-old Maiteko Morapetsane, a Geologist forced to find alternative income when the BCL mine closed in 2016.

Local is lekker!
CLEAN LIVING: Morapetsane

After spotting a local advert seeking incubators to train in Toilet Roll Manufacturing, Morapetsane decided to try something similar, focusing on cleaning detergents.

At the start of 2018, the Semotswane native enrolled on a two-month training course run by LEA.

The courses covered included: Sales and Marketing, Business Plan Development and Business Formalisation (EDD).

LEA also ensured Morapetsane received valuable exposure at various Trade Shows and Buyer Seller seminars across the country.

By August of that year, Morapetsane received P99, 000 funding from the YDF, starting production in February 2019.

His market clientele is predominantly made up of guesthouses, lodges, schools and individuals.

Having celebrated its first anniversary this month, business is building slowly, with current monthly sales of P20, 000 compared to expenses of P14, 000.

As a micro-starter, LEA intends to help Morapetsane upgrade to a higher level, which in turn will mean he can add to his current staff contingent of two.

KOHITA INVESTMENT PTY LTD

Still in its infancy, Kohita Investment was founded by retired 50-year-old teacher, Hilary Koodirile, last November.

Situated in Selibe Phikwe, Bamangwato Industrial, the enterprise offers a range of cereals, such as: sorghum, lebelebele, korong and maize.

Local is lekker!
FIBRE FAN: Koodrile

“My intention is to produce healthy food with fibre as there is a noticeable shortage of fibre-based foods. We produce Ntlatlawane, Lebelebele and Mosutlhane. I am targeting schools, hospitals, shops, prisons and individuals,” explained the former Food and Nutrition and Fashion and Fabrics teacher, who counts Palapye Technical College and Mahalapye Brigade amongst her previous employers.

As the organisation battles to gain a foothold in the market, Koodirile admits being a new company has its drawbacks, with shops buying her products at ‘very low prices’.

“They control our prices as manufactures and we end up just giving them because we do not have enough market!”

The company’s best sellers include: Bopi jwa Korong, with a 5kg bag selling for P60, maize meal at P45 for 5kg and chicken feed at P35 for 5kg.

TRUST RADIATOR CLINIC

50-year-old Ketaroma Moshe is an expert at repairing radiators and is successfully eeking out a living in what is stereotypically considered a male-dominated profession. Her ‘Radiator Clinic’ also specialises in refining brake shoes and pads, skimming cylinder heads and grinding valves.

Moshe started her business in July 2016, with LEA taking her under its wing the following year after she approached the Authority at the Selibe Phikwe Trade Show. Since then, Moshe has completed a number of LEA-run courses and holds certificates in Process Improvement, Technology Awareness, Occupational Health and Safety among others.

Local is lekker!
HANDS ON: Moshe

Based in Phikwe, where she is up against two similar enterprises, Moshe welcomes the competition.

“Sometimes we belittle ourselves as women but everything is driven by passion. When I started people thought I would not make it, especially after the BCL mine closed. However, it didn’t affect me too much as the mine did not bring much income into my business. Instead, it is local garages and individual customers who make my business to survive,” said Moshe, who completed her two-year Junior Certificate back in 1988.

She dreams of becoming the first manufacturer of brake shoes and pads in the area, items that are currently only produced in South Africa.

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Business

ABSA in the money

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Bank registers 15 percent profit increase

Two months after its official name change, Absa Bank Botswana has announced a 15 percent jump in profits.

This week, the bank’s Managing Director, Keabetswe Pheko-Moshagane revealed that despite the challenges faced by the industry, Absa registered profit after tax of P678 million for the 12-month period ending 31 December 2019.

Highlighting the bank’s success, Finance Director, Mumba Kalifungwa explained it continued on a forward momentum of driving interest income growth through prudent lending across all segments.

“On a gross basis, interest income was up by 10 percent year-on-year (YoY). However, market liquidity in the year was thin and this resulted in increased costs of funds,” he said, adding overall net interest income increased by six percent.

Furthermore, according to Kalifungwa, Absa’s net trading remained flat despite an increase in trading volumes.

“This was due to the tough trading conditions and the global geo political challenges experienced in the year. To this end, in 2019 our net fee and commission income as a portion of total income represented 35 percent of total revenue which resonates with our strategy to diversify our revenue mix,” he said.

When it comes to credit losses or impairments, the bank’s expected year-on-year credit losses decreased by 64 percent in comparison to the prior period.

Kalifungwa attributed this to the Absa’s enhanced collections capability, conservative credit extension to high risk sectors especially in the Retail segment as well as significant recovery from one of their clients.

HAPPY BANKER: Kalifungwa

The Finance Director added that as they continue to pursue growth the overall balance sheet grew by 11 percent, ending the year at a whopping P18 billion.

“For the year under review, our customer loans and advances grew by 13 percent compared to market growth of 7.7 percent. This was achieved by growth in all our segments in line with our growth strategy,” he explained, noting the main driver behind the balance sheet’s growth continues to be loans and advances and customer liabilities which remain key drivers of the bank’s total revenue.

During the period, Absa’s loans and advances to customers increased by 13 percent YoY to P13billion.

“The growth was fairly distributed across the segments in line with our strategy and continues to be focused around prudent lending in our chosen business segments,” Kalifungwa concluded.

Meanwhile, the bank has set aside a total of P231 million as dividends for the year, with shareholders set to receive 25 Thebe per share.

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Business

Local suppliers ally fears of shortages

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Fear marched menacingly into the country this week as the reality of COVID-19 began to hit home.

Botswana, which goes into lockdown this Friday, imports the majority of her basic commodities – including food, beverages and fuel – from South Africa (SA).

With SA embarking on a three-week lockdown last Thursday, it seems inevitable this will lead to a shortage of supplies here.

Although travel is restricted between the two countries, government has announced that movements of goods will be allowed.

However, it is feared the South African lockdown will lead to demand surpassing supply in the country, which in turn will drastically reduce the amount of goods available for export.

With South Africans engaging in widespread panic buying, emptying all the shelves in major stores, this could potentially prove disastrous for local supply.

The rapid spread of the virus, which has already reached many parts of the world, claiming thousands of lives in the process, has had unprecedented effects on the global economy.

While there is fear of shortage of foodstuffs, distributors have allayed such concerns, as they believe they have enough stock to supply the local market.

It will soon be seen if their confidence is well placed!

Claude Hassett, the Managing Director of one of the leading distribution companies, CA Sales and Distribution told The Voice on Wednesday this week that consumers need not worry as CA Sales has triple extra stock to supply the market.

“Besides, trucks are still allowed to get into the country,” said Hassett, adding that they are hoping that the situation will not get worse.

Hassett although the spread of the Covid-19 has affected virtually everyone they have enough stock in the inventory.

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