The summit has the theme "promoting SMMEs for sustainable growth and development of the Eastern Cape," and includes an entrepreneurial workshops over the two-day event to equip small entrepreneurs with skills to deal with challenges facing start up businesses.
Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) enterprise development services manager, Mpumi Fundam, says ECDC is partnering with the University of Fort Hare (UFH) to train entrepreneurs who have registered on the financial management workshop.
"Skills development is one of the main challenges SMMEs face, hence part of our intervention is training," Fundam says. "They will also be exposed to the latest trends in the international and local SMME market sector and learn about business opportunities within the private and public sector."
He adds that other challenges that directly or indirectly contribute to small business failure are governance issues and tender fraud. "Tender fraud discourages entrepreneurial excellence, leads to losses for the public, government and competing bidders in terms of innovation and service delivery. He states that the measures recently announced by finance minister Pravin Gordhan to deal with tender fraud are a positive step that will encourage a thriving entrepreneurial culture.
Partners of the SMME summit are ECDC, the provincial Department of Economic Development and Environmental Affairs (DEDEA), University of Fort Hare (UFH) and the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA).