Small businesses have the potential to make the poor wealthy, to change a poor community into a prospering one, and to change a struggling nation into a thriving one. With this in mind, it is no wonder the launch of the iBhayi Small Business Chamber in Port Elizabeth was a resounding success.
Local small business owners and managers came down to the Protea Hotel in Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth, for the launch of this new and exciting venture, and potentially sign up to join the new chamber.
Representing the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, the Portfolio Chairperson of the Economic Development and Tourism and Agriculture Committee, Queenie Pink, spoke of the importance of small businesses.
“Everyone present here has an equally important part to play as you commence with your business and promote the consequences of your collective choices. Needless to say, the small business chamber is a necessary lever for SMME’s to show how they can collectively overcome hardships and rise to the challenges and opportunities presented by their entrepreneurship,” said Queenie.
“We owe it to small businesses and entrepreneurs to support their efforts in every way possible.”
The Chairman of the new iBhayi Small Business Chamber, Herman Nel, a well-known businessman in Port Elizabeth, spoke of the importance of small businesses working together to lift each other up.
“This initiative is new, and tonight is the start, what’s going to happen from here is going to determine the success of this chamber and its future,” said Herman.
“The whole idea of the chamber is that we are looking at the bigger picture, and what can be done to improve each and every business that is going to be part of us, and what we can do to improve the local economy and the effect it will have on the economy of South Africa.”
In attendance for this launch, as a special guest and keynote speaker, was the South African President of the Small Business Institute, Winda Austin-Loeve, who expressed her support for small businesses, stating that they are what can build up a country and its economy.
“If there ever was a time for us to stand together and not only be a voice for small businesses, but to stand together for economic growth in our country, and to have a country that can be a legacy for our children and grandchildren, it is now,” said Winda.
“With unity purpose and vision, and the utilisation of the synergy in our diversity, I really believe that we as an organisation can change South Africa into a country where people can live and work with dignity, a sense of self-esteem and confidence in the future.”