Fifteen years and still going strong
 
THE long anticipated Durban Business Fair which is celebrating 15 years of growing sustainability was today, 20-09-13, officially opened by the Mayor of eThekwini Municipality, Councillor James Nxumalo at the Durban Exhibition Centre.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Cllr Nxumalo said there is a huge need to develop entrepreneurs because they contribute in the creation of decent jobs and in growing the City’s economy.

“Durban Business Fair is an immense platform for entrepreneurs to showcase and market their businesses therefore I urge everyone who is exhibiting here to use this opportunity wisely and gain something out of this three days,” he said.

Nxumalo said since the Fair is running concurrently with the International Conference of Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs), entrepreneurs must also use this opportunity to interact and exchange ideas and knowledge with international entrepreneurs who are attending the conference such as Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group who has successfully grown his companies from scratch but now employs over 7,000 people worldwide.

Prior to the Fair the Municipality in partnership with Ithala Development Finance Corporation Limited signed a memorandum of understanding to cement their commitment to finding different ways of developing SMMEs.

Commenting at the event, City Manager, Sibusiso Sithole said, “We are desperately looking for innovative and creative ways of addressing poverty and unemployment. There is no single player who can win the war against poverty, unemployment and joblessness alone, which is why I am confident that this partnership with Ithala will bear fruits in the near future because we share the same vision when it comes to the development of SMMEs."
Meanwhile, as a build up to the Fair, the Municipality successfully hosted the ABSA Retail Buyers Trade Night yesterday (19-09-13) at the Exhibition Centre. The session afforded the SMME’s with an opportunity to network and facilitate business linkages with potential customers. This event will now become an annual occasion.

Philip Sithole, Head of Business Support, Tourism and Markets Unit said he was very happy about the success of the event because it did serve its purpose.

The Fair is open to the public and it is free. The Fair will end on Sunday, 22-09-13.

For more information please contact, Head of Business Support, Tourism and Markets Unit, Philip Sithole on 083 288 8793/031 311 4545.
 
Issued by the eThekwini Municipality's Communications Unit. Contact Thabo Mofokeng on031 311 4820/ 0827317456 or email:thabo1.mofokeng@durban.gov.za or Sane Shandu on031 311 4806/072 572 8658 or email: sanelisiwe.shandu@durban.gov.za