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South Africa

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Currently there are over 500 townships in the South Africa, whose combined land mass surpasses that of Johannesburg and Durban combined and which are home to an estimated 40% of South Africa’s urban population. While more is understood about the small and growing businesses (SGBs) in metropolitan areas, less is known about the entrepreneurial ecosystems in the townships and how to support the primarily micro, necessity-based businesses that operate there. This report focuses on identifying the key actors implementing programmes to support entrepreneurs and small businesses operating in townships in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng, and Western Cape Provinces, the challenges the entrepreneurial support providers face, and the opportunities to strengthen this ecosystem.

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"The question of if and how business support programmes – particularly accelerators and incubators – can play a role in entrepreneurial growth in South Africa is at top of mind for donors and government alike. And while there is some evidence that these programmes do have an impact on early-stage businesses, there is less clarity on how they can best serve the needs of often-overlooked women entrepreneurs. This brief provides a regional review of the intersection of gender and acceleration in South Africa, drawing on GALI’s global findings while highlighting primary analysis of entrepreneur data collected by Catalyst for Growth (C4G), a small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) platform for programme monitoring, analytics, and reporting in South Africa."

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"Our ANDE South Africa Impact Management Knowledge Brief provides a summary and resources from the 'Impact Management for the South African social and creative enterprises sectors' project, in partnership with Social Value UK and supported by the British Council's DICE Fund. The project aimed to further understand the Impact Measurement and Management (IMM) landscape in South Africa, with a focus on social and creative enterprises. In the efforts to drive inclusivity and development, the project supported entrepreneurial support organisations that wanted to learn how to better measure and manage their impact and, in turn, support their entrepreneurs when using data to improve their decisions and performance, regardless of their level of exposure to IMM practices."

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"Timbali Technology Incubator in the Mpumalanga region of South Africa seeks to help rural farmers whose livelihood has been undercut by high-volume large farms. Supported by government financing and fee-based services, Timbali is largely based on a franchise model. Its clients supply cut flowers to Amablom,Timbali’s commercial arm. Individual clients can begin generating revenue almost immediately. Timbali helps clients both onsite and off, training them in business methods and helping them find loans to get started. It is helping clients expand intoother product lines and value-added food processing, and plans to export its model into other parts of South Africa."

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"In light of the recent changes to the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment codes, this research study seeks to understand how corporations in South Africa are approaching enterprise development. The research aims to shed light on enterprise development practices across South Africa’s corporate arena and to highlight areas of strength and innovation, as well as core challenge areas. The ultimate goal of this research is to drive more effective and impactful enterprise development practices. It aims to promote practices not only geared towards small business development and job creation, but also sustainable, values-based practices that enable transformative, socio-economically inclusive and environmentally friendly outcomes."

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"A prioritized strategy for action that assists investors, stakeholders, and policy actors in directing their resources towards generating the greatest impact for entrepreneurs in South Africa."

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"A study from Zeppelin University and Siemens Stiftung provides for the first time data that evaluates the ability of social enterprises to satisfy the basic needs of poor populations. Focusing on Colombia, Mexico, Kenya and South Africa, the dynamics in the public, private, and third sectors were examined, and to what extent these influence the activities of social enterprises. The study includes concrete recommendations on how to increase the contribution of social enterprises to poverty alleviation."

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"We assess whether imperfect knowledge of labor regulation hinders job creation at small and medium-sized firms. We partner with a labor law expert that provides information about labor regulation via newsletters and access to a specialized website. We randomly assign 1800 firms to get access to this service for a 21-week period. Six months later, the average employment level at treatment firms was 12% higher than at control firms. The intervention decreased the perception that labor regulation is a constraint to hiring and increased optimal employment level."

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"In March 2015, the ANDE South Africa chapter brought together just over 30 participants involved in the education entrepreneurship ecosystem including public and private funders, capacity development providers, academics and edupreneurs for a full-day roundtable discussion in Johannesburg to flesh out challenges and opportunities faced by edupreneurs in South Africa and to come up with collaborative actions to strengthen the ecosystem. The discussion, which covered five topics from Access to Finance to Infrastructure and Enabling Technologies, focused on direct instruction models (predominantly Low Fee Private Schools) and EdTech entrepreneurs."

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