Awethu Project app to provide virtual incubation to informal entrepreneurs

South African business support organisation The Awethu Project has launched an app for entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners, intended as a “business coach in your pocket”.

Awethu Project CEO Yusuf Randera-Rees said in a press release following the official launch of the app on June 16 that the Awethu Project App enables informal entrepreneurs to start and grow a business, make more money, and improve their lives.

“Over the last four years, 100 000 people applied to our incubator. We only had the resources to incubate the top 2 100, and those entrepreneurs have created over 2 500 jobs. Now, it’s time to replicate this success on a much larger scale,” he said.

With the free app, users will be able to keep track of their daily operations by inputting their sales and expenses, and tracking their progress against their goals. The simple and entertaining in-app videos guide entrepreneurs to learn how to grow their business.

‘Over last four years we only had resources to incubate 2 100 entrepreneurs. Now, it’s time to replicate this success on a larger scale’

While the app is available on Android devices and free to download, data to download the app will cost about R30, and monthly data costs for use should not be more than R3.

Since the app’s launch, it has been downloaded over 2 700 times from the Google Play store, with 2 400 of these being active users, said Thulisile Buzani, an analyst at The Awethu Project.

According to the Google Play store the development of the app was funded by Barclays Absa.

The app also forms the centrepiece of the Awethu CashUp Competition and a second competition for students from TVET colleges.

In each competition, those with the greatest engagement on the app will advance to in-person Awethu Connect sessions where they will join and learn from a network of like-minded entrepreneurs. Finally, leaders from this stage will emerge and receive individual in-person business coaching and then be given the chance to pitch for a grand prize of up to R50 000




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