MANDENI Municipality, in partnership with the Sector for Economic Development Agency (Seda), conducted an information sharing session for entrepreneurs and those aspiring to start their businesses this past week.
The main objective was to raise awareness on opportunities offered by various departments and entities in terms of business and capacity building programmes.
The event was attended by all councillors and ward committees.
Among the attendees were also successful entrepreneurs who came to showcase their work.
Mandeni Municipality, together with Seda KZN, handed over tools and equipment worth R 161 682 to 22 informal business owners from Mandeni Local Municipality as part of the Informal and Micro Enterprise Development Programme (IMEDP).
Mandeni Mayor Siphesihle Zulu encouraged SMMEs and the beneficiaries who received tools and equipment, such as a generator, angle grinder kits, garment steamers, printers, wheel barrows, microwaves, stoves, deep freezers, deep frying pans, chafing dishes, rotary hammer drills, etc to improve and grow their businesses.
The IMEDP provides qualifying entrepreneurs with basic business management training followed by a 100% grant for the acquisition of basic equipment and tools.
The programme, previously implemented by the Department of Small Business Development, is now delivered through Seda’s network of 54 branches across the nine provinces.
The basic qualifying criteria for this programme is that the entrepreneur must have been trading for at least three months, must be a South African and black-owned informal and micro enterprise and must produce a certified South African Identity Document for both the owner and employees.
The applicants must further provide proof of banking and, should they be using a stokvel, proof thereof is also required.
The applicants must have also undergone mandatory business development training, which takes place at Seda branches.
Entry into the programme requires the participants undergo a rigorous adjudication process in which all required documents would be verified for validity at Seda’s provincial offices.
Immovable property, such as land and buildings, are excluded from the programme.
IMEDP does not cover operational costs such as wages, municipal rates and electricity and water bills.
Applicants who have already benefitted from other government or state owned entity schemes or incentives are also not eligible to benefit from the IMEDP.
By Nkosinathi Dube