Small business owners or managers have until 18 June 2019 to apply for the sixth phase of the 2019/2020 annual Enterprise Development Programme which is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber and the Eastern Cape Development Corporation.
The programme is aimed at improving the competitiveness and sustainability of Nelson Mandela Bay business as well as to build their viability.
NMBBC CEO Nomkhita Mona said for the Business Chamber and the ECDC, their common goal was to ensure the programme produced tangible outcomes which should result in business viability, improved competitiveness and market access opportunities.
“The programme continues to grow and we have seen pockets of success through a number of our candidates who are now running thriving businesses. So we’re looking forward to the next sixth phase,” she said.
Since the 2014/15 financial year, with 119 enterprises having gone through the 5 phases of the programme, the ECDC has thus far committed further funding for 3 years into the programme. The Business Chamber plays an important programme management role and on graduation, the businesses receive one-year free Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber membership and also benefit from networking opportunities.
Participants are required to attend 80% of all the Nelson Mandela Business School classroom courses, 22 hours of counselling, mentoring and coaching as well as attending five coffee morning sessions aimed at developing their soft skills at the Business Chamber.
They are taken through an intensive course to understand the elements of market-readiness, growing their businesses and sustainable job creation.
Essentially, it offers an effective combination of mentorship and skills development.