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iKhokha – The Future of Mobile Payments

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Every now and then, we have the pleasure of meeting some of Durban’s most passionate entrepreneurs, so let me introduce you to the guys behind Ikhokha, Durban’s latest home-grown tech enterprise, taking the mobile pay point option to a new level and a more affordable price! These two born and bred Durban boys are now taking the market by storm.

 

Let me introduce Matt Puttman and Ramsay Daly, two school friends separated then reunited as if by fate. Matt and Ramsay both grew up in Westville and attended Hilton High School, even though they matriculated in different years, they stayed friends and still partied hard. Finishing at different times eventually lead the two to part ways, where by chance they ran into each other in a London bar. After a UK stint, they headed back home to South Africa.

After an article about Square in the US based Fortune magazine caught the boys interests, the guys realised that there was a potential gap in the SA market. This is where it gets really interesting, with absolutely zero experience in the industry (they were making a living playing online poker and working in a call centre respectively) they began to set out and learn everything they could about app development through to the red tape and certification around making and receiving online payments. Sounds easy? Well I hate to be the bearer of bad news but it’s not.

In South Africa, it is extremely difficult for small businesses to get capital from banks for start-up purposes (I speak from experience on this!). The guys had a working rudimentary prototype as well as the app platform (Outsourced to India for development and better pricing). Unfortunately they needed to survive and Ramsay headed down to Cape Town to work for a digital agency while Matt continued to play poker online. The two kept in contact and never let the project die.

 

By chance, Ramsay bumped into an old friend, who then introduced them to venture capitalists and potential investors. After a few tough pitches, the guys got the first phase of funding they needed to get going, and they did!

The concept is simple, all the business owner needs to have is a mobile device and he or she can take payments buy card, anywhere, anytime. The system also has reconciliation software to track the payments and best of all, they have one of the most competitive rates in the industry. As a business owner, you can get all this for a nominal fee (Once off or monthly) and you will be setup and ready to go in 5 days, no banks queues, no annoying “additional fees”, no waiting on the banks call centre only to be passed from agent to agent, just effortless setup.

Something iKhokha pride themselves in as well is customer service. You can pick up the phone or drop them an email and they get back to you, something the other big players really need to work on! And that’s not all, the guys have some amazing Plans for iKhokha which will continue to see the offer evolve and challenge the financial services sector in a way that is long overdue. This is definitely a case of watch this space!

To sum up, I think their intro statement says it all: “iKhokha is for anybody and everybody. Whether in an office, a store or on the move, iKhokha is for anyone needing to accept debit and credit card payments from customers, clients or patients.”

 

 

Feel free to check them out here:

https://www.ikhokha.com/

https://www.facebook.com/iKhokha

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Art

East Coast Radio House + Garden Showcases Diverse Crafts and DIY Experiences

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The East Coast Radio House + Garden Show is back, and this year it promises to be a haven for craft enthusiasts and those seeking interactive DIY experiences. Crafting has come a long way from scrapbooking and papier-mâché, we have an incredible line up of specialist crafters that will expand your imagination! With a focus on engaging activities for all, this year’s craft traders will offer a variety of hands-on experiences at their stalls. From crafts for the kiddies to offerings for health and beauty enthusiasts and creative entrepreneurs, visitors can expect an exciting showcase of talent, innovation, and creativity.

Craft for the Kiddies
A Toy for You, distributor of toy brand Melissa & Doug, will be a highlight of the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show. Renowned for their classic wooden toys and realistic pretend play sets, Melissa & Doug products inspire creative thinking through screen-free open-ended play. At the show, visitors will have the opportunity to see and purchase top Melissa & Doug items that are well-crafted and designed to ignite the imagination. The exhibit will also feature a colorful and creative play zone where children can engage with popular toys, such as a wooden kitchen, art easel, and wellness area. Daily themed activities, including sand art and slime workshops, will also be hosted, providing children with countless ways to encourage creativity, imagination, learning, and discovery.

Craft for Health and Beauty Enthusiasts
Alchemists’ Lab offers a unique and new way to experience self-care. With a focus on discovering top-notch, safe, and naturally derived skincare products for diverse skin types, The Alchemists’ Lab sources and develops high-quality, locally sourced ingredients. Visitors to their exhibit will have the opportunity to engage in a live interactive Bath Bomb and Bath Salts Station. Participants can personally tailor their products using premium ingredients, choosing scents, colours, and botanicals to create bath bombs and salts that suit their preferences. This immersive crafting experience allows individuals to unleash their creativity and produce items that bring joy and tangible health benefits. In addition to exclusive show discounts, visitors who tag Alchemists’ Lab on social media will receive a promo code for their online store. Every purchase made at their stall during the House + Garden Show will enter visitors into a giveaway to win an entire range of their products.

Craft for Creative Entrepreneurs
Cricut™, a worldwide phenomenon and pioneer in smart cutting machines, opens doors for small business owners and creative individuals through their user-friendly app and versatile devices. Their cutting-edge technology enables the personalisation of various items, from custom cards to unique apparel. At the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show, the highly anticipated EasyPress 3 will be made available for purchase. This portable heat press combines speed and convenience with the genius of the Cricut Heat™ app. Visitors at the Cricut stand will have the opportunity to participate in a “spin the wheel” activation and win the chance to personalise a mug, water bottle, or t-shirt free of charge. The aim is to inspire creativity through hands-on experiences, ensuring that everyone leaves the Show with a sense of accomplishment and takes home a personalised item they can cherish. Make sure to visit the Cricut stand for daily prize giveaways and stand a chance to win an exciting Business In A Box competition.

“The East Coast Radio House + Garden Show offers a unique platform for craft traders to showcase their talents and engage visitors in exciting DIY experiences. Whether it’s exploring the world of imaginative play, indulging in self-care through customised products, or unlocking creativity for aspiring entrepreneurs, you will find an array of creative exhibitors ready to inspire your inner artist,” shares Cairey Baxter-Bruce, Show Director of the House + Garden Show.

For more information and to stay updated on the latest news about the East Coast Radio House + Garden Show sponsored by Plascon, visit www.housegardenshow.co.za or follow @housegardenshow on Instagram and Facebook.

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Business

The all new Oceans Mall opens its doors to the public

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On the eve of Friday 11 November, the who’s who of KZN – celebrities, captains of industry, entrepreneurs, politicians and the media – gathered to celebrate the official opening of the prestigious R1.3bn Oceans Mall in Umhlanga.

Red carpet experience
The evening started inside the luxurious mall where invitees were treated to a red carpet experience with champagne and canapés while perusing the mall’s offerings. They were then ushered into the opulent Radisson Blue conference room and greeted by host and well-known media personality Vanessa Marawa.
Guests were entertained with song and dance, and after enough mingling and networking was had,everyone was formally welcomed by co-developer Vivian Reddy.

An unforgettable experience
Reddy gave his thanks to the attendees and spoke about the challenges that the mall faced. “This iconic mall overcame barriers and obstacles. The project has won international awards, created thousands of jobs and brought economic prosperity to the people of KwaZulu-Natal,” said Reddy.

“We have the pleasure of offering every shopper an unforgettable retail experience.”
The 36,000sqm mall is part of the double award-winning R4.3-billion Oceans Umhlanga mixed-use development project which was awarded the best mixed-use architecture award at the International Property Awards in 2016 – 2017.

Oceans Mall puts KZN on the global map
Speeches were also given by the KwaZulu-Natal Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube, the Mayor of eThekwini, Mxolisi Kaunda, and the executive head of the Government Employees Pension Fund,Musa Mabesa.

“Today we should all walk tall because the owners of this mall have put us on the global map,” said Ncube. “Hope springs eternally as we welcome and celebrate the spanking new Oceans Mall.”

State-of-the-art anchor tenants and nearly 120 stores are let
The mall opened its door to the public on 15 November with much fanfare, especially with the opening of its two state-of-the-art anchor tenants, Woolworths and Checkers. Over 97% of the mall’s 120 stores are let and are filled with both national and sought-after international brands.

The project created 6,000 jobs during construction and 2,500 permanent jobs at the mall itself, being called a catalytic development by the City of Durban.
The aspirational and opulent mall is a first for KZN and ranked alongside the other two exclusive malls in the country, Sandton City in Johannesburg and the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.
International fashion-brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Burberry and Versace, and others will launch in the next phase of the mall opening in March 2023.

For more information, go to the mall’s website, or follow the social media pages for more details: @oceans_mall on Instagram and OceansMallSouthAfrica on Facebook.

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Business

Durban Business Barrows Global Makes International Shortlist for Decarbonisation Efforts in Ad Net Zero

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Retail design and manufacturer, Barrows Global, is making a genuine difference in their industry – and they may just have the award to prove it. 

Barrows Global submitted an entry for the Ad Net Zero programme, which launched in 2020. The initiative, spearheaded by the Advertising Association, IPA, and ISBA, aims to reduce the carbon impact of the advertising industry – with the goal of reaching real net zero carbon emissions by 2030. 

Barrows tossed their idiomatic hat in the ring with their PolyAL display, designed to reduce the waste that comes with single-use, temporary promotional campaigns in South African retail spaces. Circular economy principles were foundational to this project, designing waste out of the system to launch a reusable, zero-waste display solution made from a permanent upcycled core of 100% recycled long-life cartons.

 

To crunch a few numbers, the corrugated sleeve consists of up to 70% less corrugated board than typical temporary displays and contains up to 99% recycled materials, resulting in a 37% carbon saving over a two year span. Even better, brands opting for the PolyAL display benefit from up to a 20% cost saving. 

Dis-Chem is one of the major chains that have opted for the PolyAL Eco-Display, using the sustainable advertising option for over two years. Mark Norton, Dis-Chem’s Marketing Manager, is proud to be the first retailer in South Africa to adopt these circular displays and hopes to see others following suit. “Over the past two years, we’ve seen 192 brands partner with us on this journey and seen a 100% adoption rate.” There are 812 displays rented across 152 Dis-Chem stores countrywide and over 140 advertising campaigns have been rotated on the programme. That means 2.842 million cartons escaped the fate of a landfill. That means over 100 tons of carbon has been saved from entering the environment. That means sustainable, cost-effective and scalable change for the advertising industry – all because of Barrows Global’s innovation, pioneering a space that is in desperate need of initiative and development. “Brands are seeking ways to become more circular in their operations and we are glad to offer a platform to start this journey with them,” Norton says.

This programme is shortlisted to win the Ad Net Zero awards, a veritable David in the company of industry Goliaths like Budweiser and Unilever. The winner will be announced on 23 November 2022, but Barrows Global’s Head of Sustainability,  Jenna Bestbier, already feels like a winner. “We set ourselves an ambitious vision for the PolyAL display programme. By rethinking the point of sale promotional display system and applying a lifecycle design mindset, we came up with a fundamentally better solution for the planet. Not only is our design and rental model more sustainable, but it is also more cost effective and we provide 100% proof of campaign execution,” Bestbier says. “To achieve early adoption, buy-in and scale with a disruptive solution like this and to still be running successfully 26 months into the programme (and counting) is a massive collaborative win. Being shortlisted for the Campaign Ad Net Zero Awards is recognition that we are on the right track.”

Green initiatives in most industries tend to escape notice or are ‘greenwashed’ for the purpose of positive PR. Genuine shifts with tangible results deserve to be recognised and the Ad Net Zero campaign spotlights initiatives that are reducing carbon emissions. Not all heroes wear capes, after all. If net zero is going to be achieved, every single link in the chain in every single industry must match intention with action to do better for the environment. Brent Taylor, CEO of Barrows Global recognises the importance of these pursuits. “The FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) retail sector is a significant contributor to our planet’s overall carbon footprint and the race to net zero has to look at every aspect of the value chain, in particular the billions of kilograms of cardboard waste the retail promotional display industry is responsible for,” Taylor explains. 

“We are so proud of the PolyAL innovation both in material innovation but more importantly the lifecycle business model that makes it possible,” he says. “We are grateful to Dis-Chem’s leadership in taking this leap with us, finding a new model and new way to operationalise promotional displays in retail.” Barrows may have started locally – and they do intend to expand the program further within South Africa – but scaling is also imminent with expansion in the UK and USA where Barrows works closely with the likes of Tesco and Walmart, as well as other branded manufacturers who are committed to meeting their own net zero goals. Barrows Global is a case study of meaningful action in the fight to decarbonise our world – and this is just the start. 

 

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