Meet our 2020 #SMEHeroes
In 2020, we launched our SME advertising fund, with the intention of supporting businesses that were hardest hit by the pandemic. Through the fund, we aimed to provide qualifying small and medium-size enterprises with free advertising via our extensive media networks, in an effort to help them survive the country's challenging lockdown period.
We share the stories of some of the #SMEHeroes and how they managed to endure the most devastating pandemic in modern history.
Meet FUTURE CHAMPS
Future Champs is a registered NPO social enterprise and affiliated network that uses the power of sport as its primary tool in engaging youth from disadvantaged communities.
The NPO has built a number of free-to-use boxing gymnasiums from repurposed shipping containers, which are aimed at those between the ages of five and 19 years old. Future Champs is also responsible for initiating unique sporting and educational programmes with affiliate partner gyms in communities such as Philippi, Imizamo Yethu and Khayelitsha, as well as Hillbrow.
OkJa, is a plant-based food and beverage business that was founded in 2019 by Rui Esteves and David Chait.
With its most popular product being oat milk, co-founder Chait explains that OkJa was borne out of a desire to provide a more sustainable alternative to dairy, as well as the other dairy alternatives currently on offer. “We are aiming to transform the landscape through offering an environmentally-responsible, delicious, plant-based option, which is great for adding to your cereal, foaming up and pouring into your coffee or enjoying on its own.
Self-respecting, side-walk-loving Capetonians - and particularly those who call the Mother City’s mountain-side suburbs of Vredehoek and Devil’s Peak home - will be familiar with The Red Sofa Café; a veritable institution in an area famous for its café culture.
The Red Sofa Café recently broadened its offering to include an online grocery and fresh produce delivery service, ‘Foodbox’. which stocks a wide variety of fresh, locally-sourced produce, which includes everyday staples such as meats, cheese, dairy and vegetables.
Meet SALUSHI EXPRESS
Grant Isaacs, the owner of Salushi Express in Claremont was in need of assistance at a time when his restaurant was unable to generate any form of income.
Salushi Express, a local Asian Fusion restaurant, had taken occupation of new premises in Claremont in March 2020, with the restaurant scheduled to open its doors in April. However, the advent of the global Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent national lockdown left rollout plans sitting in the dust of a construction site for the better part of four months.
Meet NATURALS BEAUTY
Tanya du Bois of Naturals Beauty, a family-owned business that produces natural beauty products has been about staying power and survival.
As a result of the global Covid-19 pandemic and the associated lockdown, Naturals Beauty found itself facing a steep drop off-in sales earlier this year, following the temporary closure of retail outlets that stocked its products.
Naturals Beauty’s supply chain was disrupted as a result of material suppliers facing severe order backlogs and transport issues, while some suppliers were forced to close their businesses entirely.