The Eskom Development Foundation has announced the winners of the 2017 Business Investment Competition (BIC) at an awards evening held on Wednesday, August 30 in Fourways, Johannesburg.
The overall national prize winner is Reba Chemicals Pty Ltd based in Johannesburg; The business which was created to replace imported chemicals from Europe and the USA, has created 19 permanent jobs over the years while awarding 10 learnerships. As a manufacturer of industrial chemicals, Reba Chemicals has built a substantial customer base – including the manufacturing of water treatment chemicals for esteemed customers like RandWater and industrial chemicals for CureChem; while providing water treatment for AquaTrait and Automotive chemicals for Hankel.
Selected by a panel of adjudicators including, economist Xhanti Payi, marketing guru, Sylvester Chauke, businesswoman Precious Tshabalala and academic Dr Langelihle Simela, amongst others – Reba Chemicals innovation and business acumen ensured they stood out from the 1202 applications received for this year’s competition.
The annual Business Investment Competition (BIC), which started in 2008, is run by the Eskom Development Foundation, recognises and rewards small businesses that are significantly contributing to the fight against unemployment and poverty and growing our economy.
R1.3 million, worth of prizes was at stake, over 100 registered companies competed as finalists in the competitions four categories; manufacturing, trade and services, agriculture and agri-processing as well as construction and engineering (full list of winners below).
As part of their prizes, all BIC finalists will exhibit their enterprises at the Small Business Expo (SBE) from 31 August to 2 September 2017 at the Ticketpro Dome in Northriding, alongside the Buy a Business Expo. The expo helps small and medium enterprises to grow by giving them an opportunity to market themselves and interact with same 7000 corporates, investors and potential clients over three days. Amongst the benefits of participating at the expo are that entrepreneurs can meet face to face with a qualified target audience, get access to pre-arranged meetings, which pro-actively connect participants to help them achieve their business goals.
“Small businesses really are the backbone of our country. To make them sustainable, we need to continue to support these businesses in our communities and recognise and reward them for the hard work and dedication they put in,”
says Cecil Ramonotsi, Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Eskom Development Foundation.
The winners in the four categories are:
- Winner – IKIM Solutions (King Williams Town, Eastern Cape)
- First runner-up – Ductile Plastics & Extruders (Pty) Ltd (Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape)
- Second runner-up – Purechem (Johannesburg, Gauteng)
Trade and Services
- Winner – EWASTE Africa (Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal)
- First runner-up – GlobeScope Security Solutions (Cape Town, Western Cape)
- Second runner-up – Your Transport (Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape)
Construction and Engineering
- Winner – Oakantswe Construction and Projects (Pretoria, Gauteng)
- First runner-up – Brimis Engineering Pty (Middelburg, Mpumalanga)
- Second runner-up – Lighthouse Engineering Services (Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal)
Agriculture and Agro-processing
- Winner – Eden All Natural (Cape Town, Western Cape)
- First runner-up – Living Harvest (East London, Eastern Cape)
- Second runner-up – Vegetable Growers and Agricultural Development Organization (Alice, Eastern Cape)
Category winners scooped R100 000, first runners-up, R50 000 each while second runners-up receive R25 000. All other finalists receive R5 000 to invest in their businesses.
“The motivations of our winners and finalists may be different, but their ultimate goal is the same – and that is to be successful – to change your life and those of others. For having made it this far, they have all demonstrated their commitment to succeed. I encourage them to use the platform provided by the Small Business Expo to not only engage with potential clients but also to connect with fellow entrepreneurs and create mutually beneficial collaborations,”
says Sathaseelan Gounden, Acting Interim Chairman of Eskom.