Hopeful entrepreneurs grilled

2015-09-22 06:00
Back: Siyasamkela Kilani, Taboka Sapepa, Tsholofelo Botholo, Ronelle Steenekamp and Irvin Ntsibantsiba (front) participated at the Engen Pitch and Polish to help grow their businesses at an event held in Woodstock.

Back: Siyasamkela Kilani, Taboka Sapepa, Tsholofelo Botholo, Ronelle Steenekamp and Irvin Ntsibantsiba (front) participated at the Engen Pitch and Polish to help grow their businesses at an event held in Woodstock.

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Pitch andamp; Polish, now in its sixth year, kicked off with a successful event last week Saturday in Woodstock.

Over 200 entrepreneurs who are hungry for change and eager to take their businesses to another level, showed up to build and polish their business pitches. The crowd was participative and encouraging throughout the day as they helped the entrepreneurs by asking constructive questions.

The contestants gave their first 30-second pitch and the delegates, primed to role-play as investors, asked meaningful questions, helping the entrepreneurs develop their pitches. This accelerated method of learning affords all attendants the chance to learn, whilst polishing their own business pitch. A video montage from previous events set the scene to prepare the delegates for what they could expect: a highly interactive learning experience. The workshop systematically went through eight carefully laid out questions which, when completed, helped provide each person with their own well-rounded and clearly defined pitch.

The second set of 30-second pitches saw a vast improvement in both the succinctness and selection of information included, which showed the contestants’ drive and willingness to grow as they seized this opportunity.

After their final pitches, Sande Yagraya from the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), Avinesh Pillai from Engen Petroleum Ltd. and Vuyisa Qabaka from Inye Business Consulting asked the five entrepreneurs clarifying questions and gave valuable feedback.

Stephen Reid, business coach, public speaker and specialist in entrepreneurship development, presented his journey of successes and failures.

Reid facilitated the workshop and competition as well as giving guidance to the delegates throughout the day. He also shared tips for entrepreneurs to increase profitability of raising finance

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