The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) this past week launched its inaugural Supplier Development Day at the Vulindlela Accommodation & Conference Centre (VACC). The event, which is a first by a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), saw captains of industry together with emerging businesses under one roof discussing various topics prevalent to business, including access to finance, procurement opportunities and regulatory compliance, says Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC’s Head of Marketing, Brand and Corporate Communications.
The event, which is an initiative of the CDC under the theme creating connections building bridges for success, facilitated access to information for Small Micro Medium Enterprises (SMME’s) on opportunities as well as Enterprise Development Programmes, says Dr Vilakazi.
“Resulting from our interaction with emerging businesses we decided to create the Supplier Development Day so that SMME’s can receive first-hand information from various public and private institutions. It is pleasing to see the warm reception the inaugural Supplier Development Day has received and the level of interaction from the audience,” says Unathi Maholwana, CDC SMME Programme Manager.
In an inspiring address under the theme business journey: challenges, success, advice by the keynote speaker – Zibu Ndikinda, Managing Director at Phila Environmental, Health and Safety highlighted the importance of diversifying ones business abilities and creating opportunities rather than waiting for opportunities.
The inaugural Supplier Development Day event, saw a packed hall of over three hundred and fifty (350) SMME’s receiving advice from various public institutions such as – SEDA, SARS, National Treasury, SBFS, Eskom, Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality and the B-BBEE Commission just to mention a few.
Speakers from the private sector included the likes of ABSA, Standard Bank, Shanduka Black Umbrellas and Chemin Incubator who all highlighted the importance of a bankable product in order to receive financial banking.
“As the CDC, we are optimistic that this initiative is a first of many to come annually and we have plans to broaden the scope of the event to other areas where the organisation has a footprint,” concludes Unathi.