Business Accelerator launch
Business Accelerator launched to catalyse small business growth
Entrepreneurs with high growth potential requiring financial support encouraged to engage with newly launched Business Accelerator.
Acutely aware of the challenges that small business faces and the socio-economic opportunity it can unlock, three Bud Chemicals businesses, Ferro Coating Resins, Ferro Dispersions and NCS Resins, in partnership with the Durban Chemicals Cluster (DCC) have launched a Business Accelerator.
“We are focussing on firms with significant growth potential driven by a disruptive offering. As importantly this potential must be attainable through their highly competent and committed leaders. We specifically want to help small businesses with big potential to achieve it. While we are in the chemicals sector and would prefer businesses in this sector, applications from other sectors are welcome” says Trevor I’Ons, Managing Director of NCS Resins.
Meghan King, Project Manager of the Durban Chemicals Cluster explains “Business Accelerators are fundamentally different to Business Incubators which are more common in South Africa. Accelerators aim to do just that; accelerate growth over a short space of time. The opportunity for growth and more intense support however means that it is appropriate for fewer firms than incubation. We’re therefore expecting to support only 5-10% of applicants. Those that we do support will however be eligible for ongoing expert support as well as highly subsidised, developmentally structured loans to fund rapid business growth. Amounts ranging from R 500 000 to R 2 million are envisaged but we’ll be guided by the case that applicants make.”
The support on offer just to applicants is significant with firms being coached by three experts to prepare to present their business case to a panel who will adjudicate it and give feedback. The top 20 applicants will receive complimentary DCC membership for a year, normally costing R 15 000 and valued at R45 000 each given the support of the eThekwini Municipality. Membership of the DCC offers a range of benefits – from a variety of industry specific training programmes, to operational support and programmes to assist members grow.
Ravesha Govender, Programme Manager for eThekwini Municipality “We’re very pleased with the additional support to the Durban Chemicals Cluster through this programme. We regularly run Small, Medium and Micro Enterprise (SMME) upgrading programmes focussing on business operations and innovations and welcome the addition to the basket of offerings of the DCC. This is a great example of the impact of collaboration between government and business. eThekwini Municipality is intent on providing an enabling platform in the industry and looks forward to the outcomes of this programme”.
Daniel Souchon, MD of Ferro Coating Resins and Ferro Dispersions, both Bud Group companies, confirms “This offers a unique opportunity for innovation, collaboration and growth within our environment which is aligned to our business foundations. I strongly encourage any of our smaller customers, suppliers, chemicals manufacturers, service providers or even firms that have never heard of us to apply.”
Interested parties can complete an on-line application at www.durbanchemicalscluster.org.za/busacccelerate by 23 November 2018. Successful candidates will be invited to a preparatory session and Dragons’ Den on 4 and 5 December at the Durban ICC.
Issued by Meghan King
Durban Chemicals Cluster Project Manager
(031) 764 6100
About the Durban Chemicals Cluster (DCC)
The DCC is a long standing public private partnership (PPP) between the eThekwini Municipality and the chemicals manufacturing sector in KwaZulu-Natal, created to promote the growth and competitiveness of the local chemicals industry. For more information see www.durbanchemicalscluster.org.za
About the Bud Group
The Bud Group is an integrated business, operating across four platforms: Chemicals and Minerals, Industrial Services, Building Materials and Financial Services. With 11 500 employees, the Bud Group has a footprint across South Africa and 12 countries in Africa. For more information see www.budgroup.co.za