The National Empowerment Fund Hosts an Empowerment Expo

The NEF in collaboration the Department of Economic Development and Tourism, SETA, SEFA and various other stakeholders held an empowerment expo on the 10th October 2017 at Mittah Seperepere Convention Centre. The objective of the event was to promote access to information on funding, franchising, enterprise and supplier development.

Mr Molepo Divisional Executive for SMMEs Development at NEF spoke on the founding and success stories of the NEF. “The NEF has benefited black entrepreneurship through the approval of 874 transactions worth more than 8.8 billion across the country and has achieved a 12 year clean audit consecutively, with 92189 jobs created, in addition the NEF has reached 30 000 people in villages and townships through the hosting of more than 138 seminars and 2.3 billion has been repaid by investees based on this analysis we have truly achieved our objective and looking forward to achieving even more” Mr Molepo alluded.

Among the guest presenters at the expo was Acting HOD of the Department of Economic Development and Tourism Mr Mabilo, who reiterated the importance of empowering black communities. ”It is the government’s approach and strategy to realise the provinces full potential by bringing the black majority into the economic mainstream and this only can be achieved by placing focus on historically disadvantaged people, black people, women, youth, and the disabled, and rural communities” Mr Mabilo said. The Department of Economic Development and Tourism has to date assisted 250 SMME’s and cooperatives, a number of these SMME’s were referred to the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) and the Small Business Development Agency (SEDA) for assistance with products development and product testing and certification. Marketing and Sales training was given to 59 informal traders. We will continue to collaborate with different stakeholders the aim of empowering black SMME’s.

The NEF is aiming to raise the tempo of black women participation in the lucrative business of fuel service stations and therefore invited Shell, Engen and Sasol to engage SMME’s on the opportunities that exist in the Petroleum industry. The Engen-NEF deal was signed in 2009 to provide affordable loans to black entrepreneurs, also providing the necessary capital to purchase service stations. In an environment where access to participation in the retail fuels industry could require significant capital investment. The NEF deal seeks to provide support to these HDSA entrepreneurs who may be experiencing financial barriers to entry into this market.

“The Engen-NEF deal was signed in 2009 to provide affordable loans to black entrepreneurs, providing the necessary capital to purchase service stations,” says Tasneem Sulaiman-Bray, GM of Engen Corporate Affairs. In an environment where access to participation in the retail fuels industry could require significant capital investment, the NEF deal seeks to provide support to these HDSA entrepreneurs who may be experiencing financial barriers to entry into this market.

“The aim is to grow Engen’s ratio of black-owned service stations, in support of the country’s Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment [BBBEE] Codes. Since then, we have attained 50% BBBEE ownership across our network of over 1,000 sites.”

he National Empowerment Fund (NEF) is aiming to raise the tempo of black women participation in the lucrative business of fuel service stations.

This was laid out by NEF CEO, Philisiwe Mthethwa, at the inaugural NEF Fuel Expo. The expo was held at the weekend at the NEF head office in Johannesburg to promote greater participation of black people, and women in particular, in the sector through the ownership and management of petroleum service stations.

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