FIGURES just released indicate that unlike many other sectors in the economy direct selling is growing, providing more micro-entrepreneurial and income generating opportunities for women.Cornelle van Graan, chairperson of South Africa’s Direct Selling Association (DSASA), says: “Direct selling attracts female entrepreneurs because it offers opportunity, flexible working hours, training and the ability to work from home. Getting started is generally easy, low cost and low risk.” There are 34 direct selling companies that are members of DSASA with more than 1 000 000 independent business owners associated with DSASA member companies - sales total nearly R13 billion a year. What to check out: Product selection: the direct selling industry offers a range of products within sectors such as health, beauty, homeware, financial and investment products, nutritional supplements and weight-loss management. Choosing which company: visit www.dsasa.co.za for a full list of member companies and scroll down and identify the companies offering the type of product or service of interest to you or the business opportunity that appeals to you. Investigate the start-up costs: all DSASA member companies are obliged to keep start-up costs low. Study the return policy: all DSASA member companies are obligated to buy back any unsold, resaleable product inventory, promotional materials, sales aids and kits purchased within the previous 12 months at the selling price less an administration fee of up to 10% of the selling price. Fully understand the compensation: check the member companies’ compensation plans as they all differ.