Why SA's startup ecosystem needs a refresh

South African startup support organisation SiMODiSA says the entrepreneurial ecosystem needs an overhaul.

SiMODiSA has released a review report on the current state of the entrepreneurship ecosystem and the proposed changes that need to be made.

Read: How is the landscape looking for South African SMEs in 2019?

SiMODiSA vice chair Matsi Modise says there needs to be an enabling environment for small businesses to thrive.

Modise says the current environment falls short in adequately nurturing entrepreneurs and small business.

Despite a great deal of financial investment in the start-up space, Modise says a top-down, blanket approach to SMEs is hindering their growth.

A lot of money has been spent. However, we are not seeing the return on the investment. With all the money that's been invested in getting start-ups, incubators, accelerator working spaces - we're still not seeign the impact.

Matsi Modise, Vice chairperson - SiMODiSA

Government and the private sector don't work well together and we also experience the top-down approach.

Matsi Modise, Vice chairperson - SiMODiSA

Any investment, intervention and support that is provided need to be tailored to each unique business and its challenges, she adds.

Modise maintains that government and private sector role-players need to monitor and evaluate the impact of investment programmes and accelerator programmes.

This, she says, will help assess whether they help create sustainable businesses that can contribute to job creation.

We spend a lot of time not necessarily understanding the small businesses that we're trying to assist and do a blanket approach.

Matsi Modise, Vice chairperson - SiMODiSA

Engage the start-up, engage the small business.

Matsi Modise, Vice chairperson - SiMODiSA

We have created a system that doesn't really help the entrepreneurs, but it helps practitioners in the system.

Matsi Modise, Vice chairperson - SiMODiSA

Modise details the policy recommendations in SiMODiSA's report and gave advice to various listeners.

Listen to the discussion with Africa Melane:


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