White-owned Businesses the ‘Biggest Tenderpreneurs’, Says Deputy Finance Minister

Updated on 5 June 2017

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Today's Top Entrepreneurship and Business Stories (5 June)

Deputy Finance Minister Sifiso Buthelezi has accused big white-owned companies of double standards for denouncing corruption when they themselves “embarked on corruption of the highest order”.

Speaking at an African National Congress cadres’ forum in Pietermaritzburg on Friday evening, he suggested that in future big companies should be charged with fraud and corruption for colluding.

“Most of these companies demonise those who seek government contracts by giving them all sorts of names and demeaning tags, including labeling them tenderpreneurs. But who benefited massively in the construction of stadiums ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup? Big companies of course; they are the biggest tenderpreneurs,” Buthelezi said.

Large construction companies had to pay back a fraction of the billions of rand they made in contracts in which they were found to have colluded.

“Yet we continue to hear about the millions [of rand] that were spent in Nkandla [on President Jacob Zuma’s private homestead], but very little is said about these big companies when they embarked on corruption of the highest order,” he said.

Calls for Zuma to step down were an indication that the ANC had “touched a nerve of white capital” and it was up to party members to defend the ANC and its leadership against attacks, he said.

Over the past two months, the National Treasury “team” had visited many parts of South Africa and the world in a bid to “convince everyone that everything was in order”.

“It feels like two years already, given the amount of work that has had to be done, and Treasury is still intact despite what some were suggesting would happen,” Buthelezi said. (via African News Agency)

KwaZulu-Natal and dti Sign MoU On Black Industrialists Initiative

KwaZulu-Natal black industrialists received a major boost with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the trade and industry department (dti) and the KwaZulu-Natal economic development, tourism, and environmental affairs department, the dti said on Sunday.

The MoU was signed during the launch of the KwaZulu-Natal black industrialists programme in Durban, the dti said in a statement.

Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said the two departments had committed themselves through the MoU to establish a framework that would promote and ensure meaningful participation in the advancement of the black industrialists in KwaZulu-Natal.

It would also demonstrate a joint effort between the provincial and national governments in advancing the objectives of the black industrialists programme in the economy, he said in the statement.

“Through this memorandum of understanding, the dti is committed to working with the the KZN province to ensure the establishment of the supplier development incubation programme in the Dube Trade Port Special Economic Zone and Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone for the BI programme.

“Furthermore, the dti will, in collaboration with the province, identify and implement joint programmes to accelerate the implementation of economic transformation policies and compliance, especially to empower women, youth, and people with disabilities,” Davies said.

Economic development, tourism, and environmental affairs MEC Sihle Zikalala said the black industrialists programme was “alive and kicking” in the province and government aimed to grow it from strength to strength, as it provided a strategic avenue for the transformation of the economy in a tangible and practical manner.

Survey by Fashion E-tailer, Spree, Shows Increase In Mobile Shopping

Online fashion retailer, Spree, has conducted a survey that indicates that there is a 167% increase in the number of people preferring to shop via their mobile phone over other devices since the survey was last run in 2015.

Almost half of the respondents (48%) preferred to shop mobile over desktop compared to only 18% in 2015; 39% of respondents still do prefer the big screen of desktops and laptops (63% in 2015) and tablet has remained similar at 13% in 2017 (19% in 2015).

The 2017 survey asked consumers about their mobile purchasing preferences, purchase choices and amounts they usually spend on goods via mobile. It revealed that 85% of these mobile shoppers prefer using an app to a mobile website and saw an increase in spending via mobile. The biggest increase (48% up) was seen in the respondents who spend between R1,000 and R2,500 per month and a total growth of 42% of respondents said to spend up to R5,000 per month via mobile. In addition to this, 60% of respondents indicated that their spend on goods via mobile is likely to increase in the next 12 months.

Survey participants cited convenience, security of online shopping compared to mall shopping, ease of doing pre-purchase research on mobile phones and comparing prices as some of the top reasons for shopping via their mobile.

With smartphone usage in SA as high as an estimated 16.1 million, an increasing number of shoppers are opting to make purchases on their mobile phones. In an emerging economy such as South Africa’s, Vincent Hoogduijn – Media24 ecommerce CEO, considers mobile commerce a key economic driver and a massive opportunity for online retailers.

“The mobile economy has exceeded expectations with its rapid pace of growth. As it continues to grow and disrupt the retail industry, and with mobile spend projected to increase by 123% just next year, the potential of that mobile economy is limitless,” says Hoogduijn.

Spree noted 129% growth from 2016 to 2017 in mobile traffic and a 266% increase in mobile orders of which the majority was placed via the Spree app. “Our results firmly indicate how mobile in South Africa is becoming the preferred shopping method amongst online shoppers.” (Bizcommunity)

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