Last week, team Lulalend spent two days at The Business Show South Africa to meet South Africa’s thriving small business community and to promote our business financing options.
Held at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, the business-to-business show attracted approximately 20 000 delegates over two days. Many of the attendees were business owners looking for ways to grow their business or aspiring entrepreneurs seeking inspiration and advice for starting their own businesses. The team were eager to chat with them all!
As soon as the expo doors opened, the Lulalend stand was buzzing with delegates wanting to know more about our business financing options and those who wanted to complete their online applications right on the spot!
Here are some of the learnings we took from the show.
South Africa Is An Entrepreneurial Nation
During the course of the expo, we met thousands of business owners and would-be entrepreneurs bursting with passion and drive. Every time we asked the question: ‘What does your business do?’ we received the same enthusiastic outpouring of passion. From accountants, IT providers and architects to salon owners, food safety consultants and catering companies, one thing was clear – South Africans mean business. CEO of NSBC Africa said it perfectly on-stage on the morning of day one: ‘You have to love what you do in order to be successful,’ and we encountered plenty of success stories at our stand.
Financing Remains A Challenge For SMEs
The expo boasted a stellar seminar program featuring speakers from across South Africa’s diverse business landscape. Discovery Business Insurance’s Head of Operations, Lana Ross, addressed the capacity crowd about creating and building better businesses. She came armed with some eye-opening statistics. While SMMEs contribute 36% to South Africa’s GDP, 82% of small businesses fail because of financial mismanagement. It’s clear that more needs to be done to support local businesses and promote financial literacy. We spoke to many delegates who claimed that lack of immediate access to funding was the main factor holding them back from growing their business.
The Fog Around Business Lending Has Lifted
One of the major impressions we left with was the willingness and enthusiasm around applying for business finance. We were busy from start to finish with applications for Lulalend business funding. While it was made clear at the seminar that more needs to be done to promote financial literacy in South Africa, we were impressed by the focused mindset and knowledge around lending from everyone who visited our stand. It was incredible to see business owners taking the reins of their own growth and making informed decisions about business finance. We were incredibly excited to meet these business owners and can’t wait to see what the future holds for their businesses.
We look forward to returning to The Business Show South Africa next year to help even more small businesses reach their full potential and to hear more success stories firsthand.