1 June 2005 saw the launch of 'Let's Do Business', a new business initiative from Fletcher Media Holdings. Let's Do Business aims to promote trade and investment in all nine of South Africa's provinces through the generation of economic interest from both the local and international business community.
Guest speakers included the CEO of Wesgro, Mr Ismail Dockrat and Dr Mamphela Ramphele, former Managing Director of the World Bank and Co-Chairperson of the Global Commission on International Migration. Dr Ramphele is also Chairperson of Circle Capital Ventures.
As a business initiative, Let's Do Business is long overdue. The country's wealth of resources; technological, social and human capital; and the entrepreneurial spirit of the people and business community of South Africa have provided the framework for the tasked project. Let's Do Business is a wholly inclusive initiative, seeking to generate and facilitate awareness around investor prospects across the country's regions; and industrial and business sectors, while providing an extensive and intensive forum for the crucial sharing of knowledge and skills in SA. As such, Let's Do Business will be a key business networking tool as it connects businesses who otherwise would not have built relationships and partnerships; fostering development, accelerating regional, and consequently national, economic growth while ensuring a more stable and communicative South African business community.
In today's launch, which also served as the launch of the Western Cape provincial chapter of Let's Do Business, Ismail Dockrat CEO of Wesgro said that his three-year vision of attracting R5-billion in direct investment in the province by 2007 was well on its way to being achieved, enthusiastically adding that Wesgro is therefore looking to a more long-term vision of growth and development. He explained this in light of the average growth rate of province during the five years before 2003, which averaged at 3.9 percent - a rate higher than that of the national average.
Ex-World Bank Managing Director and Circle Capital Ventures CEO Dr Ramphele highlighted key issues facing not only the Western Cape but the country as a whole i.e. property ownership, retaining and growing a strong local skills base and corruption. Said Dr Ramphele, "Property ownership is the foundation of all wealth creation. We need to turn the challenge of the appalling housing situation of the many shack and backyard dwellers around our province into an opportunity for accelerating the growth of the Western Cape, through a more inclusive and sustainable housing process."
Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) and the rapid growth in Corporate Social Investment (CSI) programmes has seen business accept that the challenge of development and an increase in prosperity for all South Africans is not only the task of government. It is truly an exciting time to be in business in South Africa, as together we begin shaping both the policy framework for entrepreneurship to blossom and join our 'development' hands.
"The pursuit of Black Economic Empowerment in South Africa should be seen in the context of improving our competitiveness in an unforgiving world. South Africa's unique historical imperatives for transformation have given us an opportunity to be innovative. We need to articulate more clearly what success would look like in an empowered society...[sic]...where a success factor of empowerment would be rapid capital accumulation at all levels of society involving human, social, intellectual, and physical capital," said Dr Ramphele
Let's Do Business stands as a valuable source of useful and guided information in assessing any aspects of business within the various industries. In addition, its aims to promote people who achieve success in industries and acts as an update on their developments and future plans.
In a letter of support, Minister Lynne Brown, Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism said, "Let's Do Business in the Western Cape is proudly supported by the Western Cape Provincial Government. I passionately urge you to join us in what is a strong and powerful marketing tool for the Western Cape province and South Africa."
Let's Do Business has got the business community talking... And is set to foster a culture of action.
More about the publication The Let's Do Business publication will be a directory focusing on leading organisations that form the backbone of the region. It will also tell some great stories of flourishing businesses that have successfully implemented the principle of Triple Bottom Line. A special feature will include a focus on high growth SMMEs and their contribution to the region's economy. Workshops will be hosted where members will have the opportunity to market their businesses and network with like-minded individuals.
The timing of Let's Do Business could not be better. There are unlimited opportunities for businesses in South Africa today, and Fletcher Media is proud to provide your business with the platform to excel in the challenges of the local and international business community.
For more information on the Let's Do Business project, contact Tasmin Adams on (+27 21) 441 2500 or email
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Well done Top 300-
Gosh, another new book from Top 300. I follow Top Women in Business and Government and Impumelelo, so I wish you all the best