Entrepreneurs win with pitch

2018-03-14 06:01

The ability of three entrepreneurs to deliver a winning business pitch has won each a much-needed financial incentive at this year’s Tabalaza Idea and Business Challenge.

The winner is Kgosi Ntonto, KM studio owner, with Eziekel Mokhathi, co-founder of Batho Pele Innovations in the second place and Thandi Nkidi, founder of Nkidi Manufacturing, in the third position.

The pitching was held on 2 March at the Central University of Technology (CUT) in Bloemfontein.

This business challenge is designed for entrepreneurs and individuals with innovative and brilliant business ideas, as well as investors, and is an initiative of the provincial Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (Destea).

The department awarded over R150 000 of funding to the trio.

Ntonto, Mokhathi and Nkidi were some of the 14 enterprising finalists who progressed through the different stages of the business project.

The presentation of their ideas to a panel of investors during the final stage was voted as the top one.

According to the department, approximately 270 ideas and businesses from across the province were screened to determine the 14 finalists. They were pre-screened by a panel comprising of representatives of Destea, the University of the Free State (UFS) and municipalities.

The group of finalists were trained by CUT on professional packaging, the pitching of business proposals and networking by Mauritz Venter, chief executive officer of Arzagen Biotechnologies.

On the day of the finals, the finalists showcased their innovation to a panel of investors and delegates.

The investors included entities such as Vodacom, the Free State Development Cooperation, Eskom, Coca-Cola, the U-Move group, the Mzanzi Community Fund and Innovation Hub.

The panellists have pledged support in the form of intellectual property and telecommunication opportunities for the aspiring entrepreneurs.

“I would like to see this kind of support for budding entrepreneurs in Gauteng,” said investor David Nkwanyana, chief executive officer of Ndondo Business Intelligence.

– Belinda Gabiro

The presentation of their ideas to a panel of investors during the final stage was voted as the top one.

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