The 16th Durban Business Fair, taking place from 19 to 21 September 2014, provides exposure and networking opportunities for small businesses, with this year’s programme aimed at adding value to small and medium entrepreneurs.
Photo: Hemanth Bindapersad (centre) with his winning team.
Taking place at the Durban Exhibition Centre, The Durban Business Fair provides a platform for SMMEs and big businesses to market products and services while creating business linkages.
Mayor Councillor James Nxumalo believes the Durban Business Fair plays a major role in the growth and development of the City’s economy. “With the 2014 theme of connecting the Business Fair globally, the Municipality has earmarked major projects and is working in partnership with the private sector to see small businesses benefiting through business opportunities,” he says.
Some of these projects include new infrastructure investments to support development in the north, particularly around the Dube TradePort Special Economic Zone and along the N3 corridor, the new dig-out port and many more.
A company that has benefited greatly from the opportunities presented at the Durban Business Fair is Siyaya Surveillance, which first exhibited at the fair in 2005. “When we first took a stand, we left feeling unsure of its value, but soon we started getting calls from prospective clients, then in 2007 our first order of over R500 000 came through,” said Hemanth Bindapersad, owner of Siyaya Surveillance.
Siyaya Surveillance is an electronic security company focusing on high-end technology-based security initiatives for residential and commercial properties. From CCTV and alarm systems to electric fencing and ID systems, Siyaya focuses on using the technology people have at their fingertips to help maximise their security systems.
Siyaya Surveillance will again be at this years’ fair, intent on growing its footprint in the local market.
This year, the main fair is preceded by the revival of the Regional Durban Business Fairs, a programme in which communities in three regions of the Municipality are given the opportunity to be part of this landmark event. The programme, which took place in March and April 2014, was a response to growing interest in the fair from businesses within eThekwini and beyond, who (due to the limited number of exhibitors) had not been able to be part of the main event.
The successful hosting of these regional fairs affirmed the importance of creating enabling, participatory environments for small businesses, large corporates and government departments.
For Phillip Sithole, Head of Business Support, Tourism and Markets Unit, the importance of SMMEs and their contribution to economic growth has long been recognised, and initiated the newly established Ministry headed by Minister Lindiwe Zulu.
“The Municipality has invested over R150-million in the development of small and medium business through the Durban Business Fair programme, which creates a platform for SMMEs to expand and be more creative and innovative, to gain and enhance their business,” he said.