Chance for township tech SMEs to up their skills

Three organisations have joined their efforts to fast-track the digital transformation of 40 small businesses and tech entrepreneurs from townships in and around Johannesburg.

Tarsus On Demand, in collaboration with SAtion and Microsoft, will offer a free, day-long business development workshop for 40 SMMEs in Alexandra, Soweto and Tembisa.

The initiative builds on the existing partnership between SAtion and Tarsus On Demand to help drive growth and digital transformation in SA’s SMME sector.

The workshop, taking place on 11 November, aims to equip township tech SMMEs with knowledge, skills and resources to grow their businesses, according to a Tarsus On Demand statement.

In addition, the workshop will aim to help them streamline their workflows, communicate more effectively with customers, and gain better insights into their operations, market and competition.

Mpho Nyembe, brand and programme manager at Tarsus On Demand, comments: “A thriving SMME sector is the key to addressing the challenges of unemployment, poverty and inequality in South Africa.

“To harness the potential for SMMEs as an engine for inclusive growth, we need to break down the obstacles entrepreneurs face, as well as equip them with the resources they need to become globally competitive.

“This initiative with SAtion and Microsoft is one of the ways we are helping to expose SMMEs to best business practices and equip them with the skills and tools to thrive in the digital economy. We are looking forward to working with our partners to help these emerging businesses scale and succeed through digital technology and cutting-edge strategies.”

Tarsus On Demand is the cloud enablement subsidiary of technology group Tarsus.

Unveiled last June, SAtion is a non-profit enterprise that seeks to bring stakeholders in the private and public sectors together, to discuss, coordinate and implement fourth industrial revolution projects. These include Business Unity South Africa, government, large and small entities, industrialists, private investors, thought leaders and educational institutions.

The statement notes Mbekezeli Khumalo from the Youth Innovation Entrepreneurship Design Institute will facilitate the training, focusing on business and go-to-market strategies, finance, social media presence, as well as modern work collaboration tools.

Justine Grimmer, programme lead of the SAtion ecosystem, adds: “Township SMMEs have enormous potential to drive growth and create jobs. However, all too many face challenges accessing the data and resources they need to make informed business decisions, optimise costs, drive innovation and reach customers.

“We are, for that reason, pleased to be working with Tarsus On Demand and Microsoft to equip SMMEs with practical, actionable advice about how they can streamline management of their businesses and grow revenues in a volatile world. By helping more SMMEs to thrive, we can advance sustainable employment and create a more prosperous future.”

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