South Africa’s entrepreneurship levels continue to decline

Updated on 10 June 2016

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Entrepreneurial intentions among South Africans has dropped by almost 30% in 2015 when compared to 2013, and almost halved when compared to 2010, yet the perceived entrepreneurial opportunities has increased over the same period, according to the recently release Global Entrepreneurship Monitor South African Report 2015/16.

According to Kobus Engelbrecht, spokesperson for the Entrepreneur of the Year competition sponsored by Sanlam and BUSINESS/PARTNERS –  there are many aspects at play when analysing these figures.

The report shows that the perceptions about entrepreneurship in South Africa has increased since 2009, with 40.9% of South African adults in 2015 perceiving good entrepreneurial opportunities (up from 37.8% and 25.4% in 2013 and 2009 respectively). Perceived entrepreneurial capabilities – those South Africans that believe they have the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to start a business – also increased to 45.4%, up from 42.7% in 2013 and 35.5% in 2009.

“Despite these positive indicators, these figures haven’t translated into higher entrepreneurial intention figures, which sharply declined from 19.6% in 2010 to just 10.9% in 2015. This ultimately means that 1 in 10 South African adults currently have entrepreneurial intentions.”

wiGroup announced winner of 2016 FNB Business Innovation Awards 
Last night, FNB Business in association with Endeavor South Africa announced Bevan Ducasse, founder and CEO of wiGroup as the overall winner of the 2016 FNB Business Innovation Awards, in Bryanston, Johannesburg.

Ducasse was honoured and recognised for using innovation to drive business growth and having potential to significantly scale through the Endeavor network.

He will be sponsored by FNB and flights provided by SWISS International Airlines to attend the prestigious Endeavor International Selection Panel (ISP) in Boston in September this year, to stand a chance to be selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur. Endeavor Entrepreneurs are part of a global network of founders, they gain access to influential business leaders as mentors and an advisory board to help them achieve their business goals.

“I am excited and feel privileged to be recognised as the winner of the FNB Business Innovation Awards. This accolade is testament to the hard work and dedication that has gone towards establishing wiGroup as a trusted and reputable brand. Innovation and excellence have always been at the centre of our business. We will continue breaking boundaries while still delivering quality products and services to our clients,” said Bevan Ducasse, CEO of wiGroup.

The selection criteria for the FNB Business Innovation Awards 2016 focused on businesses that: exhibited high growth potential and the capacity to add substantial economic value by creating a number of high-value jobs, demonstrated real innovation that has the potential to change the way an industry operates locally and/or internationally and were interested in accepting advice and support from FNB and Endeavor, as well as contributing to the Endeavor network.

Factors such as brand and reputation, stakeholder relations and goodwill, environmental sustainability, social responsibility and quality of governance were all taken into account.

Dell unveils a supercomputer in SA
A new super computer was unveiled in Cape Town this week. The Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) revealed its new petaflop machine, aimed at stimulating research and the private sector economy..

The supercomputer has a processing speed of a thousand-trillion floating-point operations per second. Floating-point operations per second, or flops, are used in computing to calculate extremely long numbers.

With over 40 000 cores, the petaflop machine is the fastest computer in Africa, with a speed of 1 000 teraflops, which is 15 times faster than the previous system. The new system has been aptly named LengauSetswana for “cheetah”.

The previous system, TsessebeSetswana for “antelope”, had a peak performance of 24.9 teraflops. It was 311 on the list of the world’s top 500 super computers and was ranked number one in Africa.

The Department of Science and Technology’s Dr Thomas Auf der Heyde said high performance computing contributed to economic growth.

“For our country to grow at the required rate, as set out in the National Development Plan, it needs to change gear by building capacity in the production and dissemination of knowledge… High performance computing and advanced data technologies are powerful tools in enhancing the competitiveness of regions and nations,” he said.

Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor congratulated the CSIR and the CHPC for “this quantum leap in support of South African science, especially data-intense research programmes like the Square Kilometre Array (SKA)”.

“The launch of this peta-scale computing facility in South Africa is evidence, again, of our determination to be globally competitive in certain areas of science and to make the necessary investments, and of the competence of South African scientists and engineers to develop, implement and maintain such cutting-edge technologies,” she added. (

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