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Seven young black entrepreneurs from the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation were earlier this month introduced to the world of entrepreneurship with a two-day bus tour of Cape Town’s startup hotspots.
The initiative, which ran on 1 and 2 August, was sponsored by E2, an impact investor and the Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) partner to financial services company Allan Gray.
Now in its second year, the bus tour aims to inspire entrepreneurs and accelerate their entrepreneurial journey. So inspiring was the first instalment of the bus tour that one of the participating entrepreneurs declined a lucrative international corporate opportunity to pursue his own business.
This year’s tour saw fellows and candidate fellows engage with some of South Africa’s foremost venture builders, investors, co-working spaces and entrepreneurs, giving them a holistic experience of the start-up ecosystem.
What I loved about the tour is witnessing the realities of entrepreneurship, says bus tour participant
The two-day tour included stops at Workshop 17, Silicon Cape, WomEng, RecoMed, Tuyu, Neural Sense, MTN Solution Space, Venture Burn, South African Business Angel Network (Saban), Seed Space, Far Ventures and Silvertree Internet Holdings.
“What I loved about the tour is witnessing the realities of entrepreneurship. People out here have great ideas, but what really makes things work is their perseverance,” said Tlhologelo Mabelane of Mabu Tribe.
The seven that took part were:
- Kihisha Suleman of Brainbox – which seeks to match consultants who are currently idle, with SMEs.
- Anza Mamafha of Ezra Consulting – seeks opportunities to provide entrepreneurship development services to SMEs
- Kgoagelo and Tlhologelo Mabelane of Mabu Tribe – a manufacturer and retailer of organic beauty products specifically for ethnic hair
- Ofentse Noko of WashMe – an on-demand mobile waterless car wash service
- Mzwenhlanhla Hlongwane and Sinqobile Mashalaba, Hlanganisa – who seeks to utilise stokvel assets to provide loans to eligible SMEs
The annual bus tour is just one of several entrepreneurial development initiatives spearheaded by the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation and E2. Other notable initiatives include early stage programmes, an incubator and accelerator programmes.
Anda Sebesho is communication specialist at E2.
Featured image: Participants on the Allan Gray Orbis bus tour with E2 staff an Ground flr’s AB Cassim (extreme left), who co-ordinated the tour and Ventureburn editor Stephen Timm (extreme back, standing up).