Local Business Owners Honoured at Premier’s Entrepreneurship Recognition Awards
The Western Cape business sector was out in full force at the Premier’s Entrepreneurship Recognition Awards on Thursday 20 November at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.
Hosted by Premier Helen Zille and the Department of Economic Development and Tourism, the event was held to honour entrepreneurs making substantial contributions to the province’s economy.
Jeanne Groenewald was the overall competition winner for her business, Elgin Free Range Chickens’ ability to sustain and create jobs, and to increase its turnover in the medium to long-term. She won a trip for two to a major international entrepreneurship event plus R50 000 in cash.
Jeanne was inspired to start the company in 1997 after she became worried about the impact of processed, chemically enhanced foods on her two children. She then began rearing free range chickens in her backyard and today, she supplies almost 80 000 free range chickens per week to leading South African retailers, deli’s and restaurants from the company’s premises in Grabouw.
Other category winners, who each received R90 000 in prize money, were:
Kennedy Kitheka of Funda, which partners with universities to create affordable, online learning programmes with dynamic course content.
|Social enterprises||Eunice Nyobole and Adri Williams of Khayelitsha Cookie Company, which produces an extensive range of high quality hand-baked cookies for the hospitality, retail and corporate markets. The company started with four women in Khayeltisha, and now employs more than 50 women on a full-time basis|
Shameem Kumandan of Washtub Industrial Laundry Service, a launderette designed to minimise electricity consumption and environmental impact by recycling water and controlling effluent and chemicals usage
|Best innovative student idea|
Francois Petousis and David Gluckman of Lumkani, which manufactures a fire detection device designed for informal dwellings.
Western Cape Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, said one of his key goals was to foster a strong culture of entrepreneurship.
“The annual Premier’s Entrepreneurship Recognition Awards is the showcase event for entrepreneurship in our province. It allows us to identify inspiring, high-potential entrepreneurs, and to recognise them for the important role they are playing in putting Western Cape business on the global map, and for creating growth and jobs in our economy.
“Entrepreneurs don’t only create jobs – they spur innovation, make our province and country more competitive, and create economic opportunities throughout the value chain in their respective industries. They also inspire others to follow in their spirit.”
This year, the awards organisers received more than 300 entries – a more than 300% increase compared to the inaugural competition last year – from which they chose the 15 finalists.