Connect with us

Business

Machine operator turned tombstones

Published

on

Youthful entrepreneur, Keabetswe Malope ventured into tombstone sales business after realising that there is an untapped opportunity in the market.

His company, Shingaboy Tombstones sells and distributes tombstones around Botswana. Malope told Business Trends that he started the business because he wanted to fill the market gap and create employment for other young people. Malope, who is a qualified heavy plant machine operator, has never been employed as a heavy plant machine operator.

He has instead worked as tombstone installer and marketer for a local tombstone company for a period of one year and started his own business in 2015. “When I was an employee, I discovered a lot of inefficiencies from local service providers so I took that as a business opportunity,” said Malope. Starting the business was not difficult for him. He was fortunate to have interacted with a supplier in his previous job, who told him that he did not need a lot of money to start up.

Malope started with one tombstone that he sold for P35 000 and within a month more customers were already placing orders. “My supplier in South Africa encouraged me to start my company but I had fears because I did not have enough money to run a company, but he kept telling me to register a company and then start marketing the products.

After a while he supplied me with stock which I paid for after selling,” he said. Shingaboy Tombstones currently has four employees. Malope said through marketing and advertising on Facebook, he has been able to receive many customers from various places. Although he is competing with more established undertakers and mortuaries that are well known, he has been able to penetrate the market within two years.

He has been operating from home and now has moved to an office in Gabane. “We don’t feel intimidated by the big mortuaries because we offer dignified scheme that is designed to help families cope with demand of a funeral and burial which also focuses on the needs of the bereaved families. “Prices start from P4 000 to P35 000 and we offer transport,” said Malope. Among the challenges that his company faces is lack of transport to carry stock from South Africa and to deliver across the country.

Continue Reading
Comments

Business

ADB grants BDC P4m for capacity building

Koobonye Ramokopelwa

Published

on

BDC head of human capital, Thabile Moipolai

African Development Bank has granted Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) over P4 million for training and capacity building of its staff members, the latter’s Managing Director, Bashi Gaetsaloe has disclosed.

The grant, which is $400,000 could not have come at a better time for BDC which has just begun a foray into the African continent. According to the Head of Human Capital at the investment arm of government, Thabile Moipolai, the grant will be used in areas such as investment, legal and risk, the three divisions which are considered critical as they continue to push the five -year strategy.

BDC has been given the leeway to invest outside Botswana and already some investments are being made in West Africa. Capacitating the staff in the above areas will come in handy for the African expansion.

Moipolai was answering a question from The Midweek Sun on Friday during the company’s annual stakeholder briefing where operational and financial reports for 2017/2018 were made public. The grant will be utilised in the next two years. BDC has reiterated its plan to continue to invest initiatives which are aimed at developing and retaining staff members.

“As we continue to build a strong BDC for the future, continuous learning and development is critical for our business success and therefore remains a priority area for Human Capital,” BDC 2017 annual report reads.

BDC has also developed a future focused competency based training that will be used to make informed learning and development decisions. “The (BDC) academy will also help BDC produce future leaders that are fluid and progressive through a bespoke leadership development,” reads the report.

Continue Reading

Business

KBL announces return of Kickstart program

Koobonye Ramokopelwa

Published

on

Previous kickstart beneficiaries

Kgalagadi Breweries Limited, a unit of Sechaba has announced the return of Kickstart, a youth entrepreneurial development program that was suspended three years due to lack of financial resources, Managing Director, Renaud Beauchamp has told the media.

Before the program was put on ice, it had benefited over 70 small medium enterprises with funding, mentoring and market access assistance. According to Beauchamp, the revamped Kickstart will start next year, with an annual budget of about P1, 5 million. “We plan to invest in 15 new businesses every year,” he said at a press briefing which also announced a price reduction for its alcohol brands such as St Louis, Castel Lite and Black Label.

Successful applicants will receive about P200, 000 grants to execute their business ideas. Beauchamp stated that, they have been able to reintroduce Kickstart from ‘freed capital’ as a result of the recent reduction in Alcohol Levy from 55 percent to 35 percent. The clear beer price reduction comes after the Alcohol Levy, which made beer expensive, was slashed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi regime some few months ago.

Meanwhile, Assistant Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment has announced changes in trading hours for businesses that trade with liquor.

Continue Reading

Trending