Thando Sigege (22), South Africa
Hungry for knowledge, Thendo joined the New Ventures’ course because he believes that no one can ever attain enough knowledge about anything. At the age of 16 he began his first business, a record label and the entrepreneurship bug caught. As an Advertising and Communication student, Thando aims to start a business focused on the ever-evolving world of technology and aims to branch out into media. “I believe South Africa is yet to create highly exportable media content and I am the man who will change that.”
Meet the New Ventures Studio
Brad Sitzer (31), South Africa
Brad describes himself as a social entrepreneur and says that his vision goes beyond his needs but something bigger - having the ability to change people’s lives. Speaking about entrepreneurship, Brad says: “It was always a dream of mine when I was in high school, the dream faded when I went to university and into corporate but it revived itself in my mid-twenties,” when he and a few partners opened an internet cafe. Today, Brad’s passion is in education and holistic development and he aspires to launch a learning centre located in the Cape Flats. His three-year plan is for the project to be self-sustainable and for it to be deployed to other sites. He says that the New Ventures course will offer him the necessary education to build a sustainable business and offers a network for future collaboration so that social entrepreneurs and corporates can work together.
Marshall Khunou (25), South Africa
Marshall always knew that he wanted more out of life, to be part of something great, he grew up watching his grandparents - who were themselves business owners –putting children in their community through school. With his Media and Communication start-up he believes he will continue their legacy and give people opportunities. With a never-ending hunger for accumulating skill, knowledge and understanding, Marshall wants to complete the New Ventures Studio training because it offers him an opportunity to learn all the practical aspects of running a growing and sustainable business. “It will help me with the tools that will benefit me in translating my dreams to reality.”
Sisanda Marwa (30), South Africa
As part-owner of award winning Durban-based Audio Company SoundChi, Sisanda Marwa says that she has always wanted to be an entrepreneur even before she knew what an entrepreneur was. Heralding from a family of entrepreneurs, Sisanda says that she has worked at the side of her grandfather – who has started many businesses including an investment company that bears the family’s name – since childhood. Currently completing her MBA, Sisanda describes herself as an ideas person who enjoys networking, getting projects started and solving problems. “I believe the course will be my learning curve to my continuous growth process of the person I want to be.”
Garth Schreiner (32), South Africa
Garth comes from a finance background and is a chartered accountant. Working for a number of years in the corporate sector he decided to become self-employed a little over a month ago. He says that about two years ago he identified a gap in the market for his services and this gave him the inspiration he needed to work towards running his own financial consultancy business. In a year he would like to have established his business which can give his employees a platform to grow. ‘I am a leader who can add value to peoples lives and other businesses. I want to grow a culture of excellence.’ Through attending the New Ventures Studio course, Garth is looking forward to learning how to transfer a great idea into a workable business.
Mitchell Barker (32), South Africa
Mitchell Barker is an experienced entrepreneur in the telecoms, IT, communications and advertising industries, his strengths lie in strategising, building relationships, and managing outcomes. From a family of entrepreneurs, Mitchell says that he has a burning desire to be part of something bigger than what he is involved in. “I want to collaborate more, teach more and grow a team who shares a common goal, vision and mission.” Speaking about what he wants to achieve through the New Ventures Course, Mitchell says that his objective is to gain insight into the fundamentals of business and hopefully come out with a strategy approach/plan that can be applied to his current new business venture. “All my experience is based on real-world situations, and I need inspiration and insight to look at a business in a different way.”
Tshegofatso Marumo (35), South Africa
Tshego grew up around an entrepreneurial grandmother who has always been a source of great inspiration for her to become a business owner. Following her retrenchment, she focused and began her entrepreneurship journey. As a freelance writer, she already has a taste of what it is like to work for yourself and this motivates her even more to become a successful entrepreneur. Tshego owned her own business, Net-twist that aimed to bring together like-minded people to discuss how they can engage and collaborate with one another through career and business events. She is also driven by the desire to create jobs for others in an unstable economy where unemployment is high. When we asked what she is looking forward to from the course she said ‘The New Ventures Studio course will give me confidence and tools to use in my own business and enable me to create an opportunity to network and learn from others.’
Munsoor Rawoot (23), South Africa
After graduating from university, Munsoor says that he found it challenging getting employment because of his lack of experience and decided to turn his challenge into a positive. “I decided to create my own opportunity in order to uplift myself and help other students in the marketing industry gain experience.” He says a defining moment in his life came when his father told him to become his own boss because ‘by working for someone you are helping them achieve their dreams not yours.’ Munsoor says that as he builds his business, these words remain his constant motivation. Passionate about marketing, Munsoor inspires to help small businesses by assisting with marketing strategies and services. In speaking of the New Ventures Studio course, Munsoor says that the course will help him develop as the entrepreneur he wants to be.
Jean-Pierre Damas (32), South Africa
Jean-Pierre describes an entrepreneur as a leader who is in control of their own well-being, a trait that he possesses. A fully-fledged business owner, Jean-Pierre operates a hardware store where he currently employees 15 people from his community while continuing his Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing Management. His dream is to become a supplier to other stores in the community. “I’m an entrepreneur from my heart and have been working 7 days a week for the past ten years because I want to be a success. My dad is an entrepreneur and I have learned everything I know from him.” A knowledge chaser, Jean-Pierre says that he took the New Ventures opportunity to expand his mind and that he will take the knowledge gained and implement it into his everyday routine.
Luleka Ngxakata (31), South Africa
Luleka wants to change the face of events in the township and has recently launched her own events company. “The events industry is the most growing industry and I see the need to be involved so that I can bring change and create memorable events in the township.” She says that the course will help her in many ways. “The 8-week training will help me know more about entrepreneurship and having a mentor to guide me towards my goals will also help me learn how to market and brand my company.”
Kedwyn Kammies (21), South Africa
Media enthusiast, Kedwyn is an entrepreneur who is willing to go the extra mile to make a success out of his goals and visions. Endeavouring to launch his own media company with a focus on lighting, camerawork and editing, Kedwyn says that he wants to complete the New Ventures Studio training because it will keep him informed. “In order for me to run my own business I need to know more than I know now. The knowledge I can gain will be really beneficial.” Kedwyn says his three-year goal is to have his business flourishing and in a position to offer young people opportunities.
Aloisess Marshal (22), Zimbabwe
A born entrepreneur, Aloisesse began his first small business when he was in Grade 3, when he began selling sweets to his friends. His business grew to a point where Aloisesse opened a little market in front of his house and supported his family with the profits during tough times. Today, Aloisesse finds inspiration through design and aspires to host the world’s first Urban Culture Fashion Expo. He says one of the most exciting parts of the New Ventures Course is the guidance and mentorship offered. “I am looking forward to the training regarding partnerships and learning about the various opportunities that are out there.”
Ryan Geel (32), South Africa
“I have past the concept of money and through my history I have realised that true wealth is based not only on oneself but based on the whole, including the people you work with and how you affect their socio-economic environment.” From a family of entrepreneurs, Ryan is no stranger to the world of business and is keen to start a new venture in either the retail, technology or sharing economics sectors. He says that he joined the New Ventures’ course for the elements of support through advise and mentorship.
Yoemna Meyer (32), South Africa
Yoemna is an experienced manufacturer and shoe designer who carries great joy when seeing her client’s happy. With the entrepreneurial gene in her blood, Yoemna is a passionate businessperson like her father who owns a shoe manufacturing business that Yoemna wants to take to the next level. “My goal in a year’s time is to run a successful business, employing 50 – 100 people and supplying stores and boutiques and eventually importing and exporting. Yoemna says that the course will provide her with the knowledge that is required to become a successful entrepreneur.
Ramazani Senda (22), Democratic Republic of Congo
Ramzani is not new to the world of entrepreneurship and began his first business fixing computers when he was a junior in High School. A born creative, Ramazani desires to launch a business in the retail, technology and design sectors. He says that his one year plan is to host creative workshops from his own independent space so that he can empower others. Ramazani says that he hopes the New Ventures’ training will give him leverage in the business industry. “We were never taught to be entrepreneurs in school neither are there many places that offer such opportunities. From this training I hope to gain an open-mind of knowledge, skills and experience.”
Nkosikho Juqu (28), South Africa
Nkosikho’s eyes were opened to the concept of entrepreneurship when an organisation he worked for almost closed down because of a lack of funding. “The experience stimulated my interest in becoming an entrepreneur.” Currently the owner of an internet café and printing services, Nkosikho aims to expand his business and for it to be profitable. “I want to complete the training because I want to learn how to manage my business effectively and efficiently.”
Loyiso Damoui (30), South Africa
An entrepreneur with an eco-edge, Loyiso is an innovator whose business Ubuntu Khayelitsha on Bikes offers bicycle township tours. The first in his family to own a business, Loyiso says that he wants to start a legacy. “One of my many goals is to provide a service that will create jobs for people and eliminate social ills that affect our country.” On the eight-week-course, Loyiso says that he has never attended any formal training and believes that through the intense training he hopes to find the correct knowledge and guidance.
Webster Kushata (28), Zimbabwe.
Webster is currently the Managing Director of Nzumu Nzumu Group, but he prefers to be called the 'Chief Dreaming Officer'. He says he had his Euraka moment when he was 8 years old when he realised he had a passion for wealth creation through being an entrepreneur. This was when his first busines started, selling fruit and vegetables. Since then he has been a serial entrepreneur opening a variety of businesses from a modeling agency to Auto services and internet cafes. He says 'I want to be abe to create jobs and address unemployment in South Afrcia. As an entrepreneur I see value in the people I work with and I am continually looking for new and smarter ways of doing things to deliver the best service possible to my customers.' Talking about the New Ventures’ course, Webster says that to him, knowledge is king and that if he wants to get to the top of the entrepreneurial journey he needs the help and guidance provided.
Nick Adriaans (25), South Africa
A hardworking, self-motivated go-getter Nick found his passion for landscaping out of a difficult situation. “I lost my father when I was 20 years old and began doing his outdoor duties at home and found my passion for landscaping.” Nick took his passion to the next level when he launched a garden-service company a few years later. “This is my calling, my passion I want to educate this generation and the next on ways we can beatify the world.” Nick says that through the New Ventures Studio training he can gain valuable knowledge and access to a network of people who will support and believe in his dream.