Startup entrepreneur questions SA legislation for SMMEs

South African entrepreneur Heather Malcomess is set to challenge the Department of Trade and Industry Company (DTI) at the Law Symposium next week in Johannesburg concerning the lack of support for Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs).

“The brilliant Consolidated Plan of Action (CPA) does not take into consideration that it can kill a SMME in a month. Also Financial Intelligence Centre Act (FICA) – which is also brilliant, but gags and binds newly formed companies as they are not able to open bank accounts easily,” Malcomess told HumanIPO.

The DTI event is advertised as a Special Economic Zone Capacity-Building Seminar on the official website, inviting the public to attend the international seminar in Gauteng next week from February 25 to March 1 at the Emperor’s Palace.

The recently announced draft policy of the Bill on Special Economic Zones (SEZ), which “aim[s] to promote value-added exports and export-oriented industries, to build industrial capabilities, and attract domestic and foreign direct investment as well as desired foreign technologies” will be discussed.

Malcomess related her experience as “a guiding force for crafters, SMME and start-ups” who assists young entrepreneurs, appearing naïve and clueless about setting up their business.

“I have found that these companies battle from the word go,” she explained.

Malcomess also aided startups with funds, but could not continue because of financial challenges, such as obtaining funds for training.

In effort to make a difference, she initiated a small scale seminar in Johannesburg called Digital Age Seminar to promote the use of South African IT platforms, but was once again stopped in her tracks due to no marketing support.

Malcomess originally started her own business as a flea market stall, but realised that SMMEs do not get paid fairly and miss out on business opportunities.

After attending First National Bank (FNB) Biznet programs, she established her online business as Zynbad Bikers, selling a range of products from motorcycle gear and badges.

Posted in: Startups

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