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Press release: Zevoli launches SharedImpact to facilitate meaningful ESD programmes between mid-sized corporates and MSMEs

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Enterprise and Supplier Development service provider Zevoli Growth Partners is proud to announce the launch of SharedImpact, an online platform that allows corporates to sponsor Business Development Support services, and operational tools and resources for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) capacity building.

Zevoli CEO and co-founder Mpopi Khupe explains, “SharedImpact is an online platform that facilitates MSME capacity building by marrying up the capacity building and capability development needs of small businesses with mid-size corporates that are committed to spend their ESD budgets on meaningful and sustainable interventions.”

“Mid-sized corporates, that typically make between R50 million to R250 million in revenue per year, are required to spend 3% of profits after tax on ESD initiatives. Because of their small budgets, companies of this size range are typically looking for quick win, effortless solutions and are typically not targeted by ESD implementation partners.”

“As such, mid-sized corporates very often fall prey to supporting unvetted MSMEs that are recommended to them through various biased and subjective sources. This means that these companies often have no way of verifying whether the MSME is indeed the right candidate for the support or how the money was spent.”

No real impact

She says that this is an undesirable situation, because such initiatives do not have any meaningful impact and simply become a tick-box exercise for companies to earn points on their B-BBEE scorecards, instead of bulking up the capacity of MSME – a segment that significantly contributes to job creation and economic growth.

“On the other hand, there are hundreds of MSMEs that applied but did not make it into ESD programmes, yet they need the support and development. There is no other comparable seamless solution in the market where these two worlds logically come together, so SharedImpact facilitates this partnership,” says Khupe.

Typically, Zevoli conducts a diagnostic assessment of an MSME and draws up a growth plan, with specific interventions that need to be implemented. This basket of interventions ranges from business mentorship, learning and development to the provision of operational tools and equipment. All of these can be sponsored by a corporate on the SharedImpact platform.

Addressing specific needs

“Mid-sized corporates that are looking for ESD programmes to spend their budgets on, can use the platform to indicate their budget and implementation timelines; this will direct them to the most well-suited package. Once the interventions related to the selected package have been implemented, the required BEE verification documents will be made available securely on the platform.” says Khupe.

Once a corporate has provided the required information, they have the option to securely make the purchase via the online platform or download a proforma invoice to navigate internal approvals. Thereafter, the Zevoli team executes the applicable basket of interventions, typically over a period of six weeks to nine months as informed by the client’s period to year-end, usually through a combination of virtual and in-person engagements with the MSMEs.

While the fundamentals of the programmes remain the same, each programme and the tools provided will be specific to a particular MSME’s development needs. The implemented initiatives are matched to the specific needs of individual small businesses, and this becomes the basket for the business development support interventions that a specific MSME receives.

“Essentially, SharedImpact gives us the ability to aggregate mid-sized companies’ smaller budgets. At the aggregated level, we have a more impactful budget for the most well suited ESD capacity building interventions, allowing us to reach more MSMEs and forge deeper engagements,” Khupe concludes.

Editorial contacts:

Zevoli Growth Partners

Sashe-leigh Padiachy

Tel: 011 100 4727

Email: marketing@zevoli-growth-partners.local

Evolution PR

Lara Karam

Tel: 060 675 7546

Email: lara@evolutionpr.co.za