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Creamer Media | 7 July 2023

Take a walk past the Ceramic Industries factories in Vereeniging, Krugersdorp and Hammanskraal on any given day and you may come across informal traders, tilers, transporters and other artisans milling nearby the company’s headquarters hoping for an opportunity for a ‘piece job’ or a chance to earn a day’s honest living.

In response to this pressing need in the community, Ceramic Industries, along with business incubator, Vantage Advisory launched an Enterprise Development project that offers interested tilers and transporters in Hammanskraal the opportunity to formalize their enterprises by aiding and guiding them through a structured incubation program.

The initial step was to register all 42 beneficiaries with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC). Following registration, the SMEs were accepted into a business development support program designed to assist entrepreneurs in shifting from informal to formal enterprises so that they, too, could contribute to their community's socioeconomic development.

On the 8th of July 2023, Ceramic Industries will host an Awards event at Zenzele Park in Boksburg for its Enterprise & Supplier Development Graduation in recognition of SMEs that have achieved the greatest revenue growth and employment creation.

Ceramic Industries is Africa's leading maker of high-quality, stylish, trendy tiles and bathroom ware, with a focus on responsible corporate responsibility and the social and economic development of formerly disadvantaged individuals with eight factories, seven in South Africa's Gauteng province and one in Australia.

Steered by effective leadership towards responsible corporate responsibility, Ceramic Industries is conscious of the collective challenges our nation faces and intentional in its approach to creating meaningful and sustainable interventions which promote the social and economic development of previously disadvantaged individuals.

The twelve-month Business Development Support (BDS) programmes gave the SMEs an overview foundation of various skills, processes, and compliance requirements that are essential skills for any start-up business.

Says Vantage Advisory Director, Luncedo Mtwentwe: “Entrepreneurship cannot be taught in the classroom. Now that we have introduced basic business concepts to our beneficiaries, we want them to apply the knowledge they have gained in more practical ways in their businesses.

Ceramic Industries’ Tabisa Ngubo adds that the organization offers myriad business opportunities to its Enterprise Development alumni but also encourages them to spread their wings beyond the exposure that they gain from Ceramic Industries.

“It is incredible to witness the growth amongst our intake of artisans especially when they literally present their offerings in a boardroom setting with the verve and confidence of skilled business practitioners. True empowerment is about seeing individuals leapfrog to new heights and become fully independent to the point of even hiring their own staff and turning their businesses into going concerns. Some of our ED suppliers now own entire fleets and are strategic partners in our business value chain. Our ED awards are about encouraging more small businesses to grow with us,” says Tabisa Ngubo, Ceramics Industries CSI Coordinator.

Ceramic Industries is devoted to broad-based economic transformation through the expansion of entrepreneurs and suppliers, as well as the creation of competitive marketplaces for them to create more jobs and build sustainable communities.

‘Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER’.


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