The Guard

The Truth On Board

Maloi wins R500k from DESTEA

By Emily Setona

BLOEMONTEIN – Khotso Maloi fended off tough competition to walk away with a cheque of half a million rands at the provincial youth business pitching competition finale which was held at Pacofs on February 15.

Tikwe21 is an ICT company founded in Lejweleputswa District, Virginia by Maloi who after winning the final round of the youth business pitching competition expressed his joy at winning this large sum of money that is going to give his business a much-needed cash injection.

“I am happy that it is over, the anxiety was a bit too much. I am happy to go back home and work on my business. Fortunately for me, I am the overall winner of this financial investment, and I am very happy that I am going to begin working on my business and achieve the milestones that I’ve set for myself,” Maloi said while addressing the media.

The panel of adjudicators emphasised a few points to consider when pitching and presenting before a panel of judges.
They emphasized: “Business owners must remember to sell their product and clarify if it is a working business or just an idea. Talking about your business is not enough, business owners were encouraged to sell their products and advised to send a member of the team who is good at marketing and selling the business instead of wanting to present your own business, but you are not good at presenting.”

Destea MEC Thabo Meeko handing over R500k to winner Khotso Maloi.

Addressing the audience before announcing the winner, MEC of the Department of Economic, small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (DESTEA) said:

“The journey of an entrepreneur is not easy, this is a courageous decision because if you don’t wake up and you don’t succeed to close your market niche, there’ll be no salary for you and no food, it’s not easy that’s why you need the government’s support.

“The government contributes only 10 percent, and you contribute 90 percent so that your business becomes a success. We are very inspired because the business owners are very aware of the economic situation that we are in.”

There were 10 contestants from the different districts and the judges described the competition as ‘tough’, and not easy for them to judge.

They indicated that there were no losers. The winner received a cheque of R 500 000 and a six-month business mentorship course from Vodacom.