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Trialogue & Eskom partner to promote enterprise development

Categories: ALL THE NEWS , Enterprise
Enterprise development involves investing money and time in small enterprises, so that they can become sustainable and grow.

It can help people to escape poverty and earn a living, and in the process contribute to economic growth in South Africa. Corporate Social Investment consultancy Trialogue has accordingly launched an Enterprise Development topic on its Trialogue Knowledge Hub (http://trialogue.co.za/knowledgehub/), which now spans nine topics addressing subjects ranging from financial literacy to school leadership.

It brings together local and international research, examples of best practice projects, news and opinions, and many more tools.

The intention is for corporate foundations and other stakeholders to find out more about this trending topic, learning from other companies' experiences and unlocking its potential. Enterprise development is also a key component of the revised BBBEE and other sector codes, so more companies are seeking up-to-date information on it.

Trialogue MD Nick Rockey says: "Research has shown that South African companies have already invested millions of rands in Enterprise Development, to bring about positive social change and to complement their commercial offerings. However, Enterprise Development is not reaching its potential. The 2013 Impact Amplifier Report identified three main challenges: lack of business knowledge among small entrepreneurs, the gap between objectives and application, and insufficient measurement frameworks to check on the impact of programmes. We hope that more companies will access the Knowledge Hub, whether they are considering getting involved in Enterprise Development, or want to take their current interventions to the next level."

Rockey says he is delighted that Eskom has agreed to sponsor the Enterprise Development topic, as the power utility has extensive experience in this sector and much to share.
Eskom Senior Communication Advisor Manana Maboe said: "Eskom aims to add real value to the lives of South Africans. The Eskom Development Foundation was established in 1990 and enterprise development is now one of the core programmes in our portfolio. We have worked with Trialogue for many years and are delighted to support this latest initiative and help other companies to achieve their strategic objectives through Enterprise Development."

Maboe gave the example of the Eskom Contractor Academy, set up in 2007 as a way of empowering many emerging businesses that ordinarily fail during their first two years of operation. The academy continues to support emerging contractors and suppliers with financial, legislative, management, leadership, entrepreneurial and technical skills. The training programme runs over an eight month period, with students attending a one-week study school once a month.
Other Eskom Development Foundation initiatives include the Eskom Business Investment Competition, which rewards small businesses contributing to the fight against unemployment and poverty.

More recently, at the Trialogue Business in Society conference in May, Eskom sponsored representatives of three non-profit organisations to attend the conference and pitch their projects to a panel of corporate donors. Prizes of R25 000, R15 000 and R10 000 respectively were covered by Eskom for reinvestment in their projects.
To find out more about the Trialogue Knowledge Hub: http://www.trialogueknowledgehub.co.za/. Companies interested in sponsoring a topic or contributing learnings and insights should contact Ruendree Govinder at rgovinder@trialogue.co.za.

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