Rupert an honorary patron of Business Partners after retirement as chairman
Business Partners Limited, the specialist risk finance company for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), has announced that Johann Rupert, the founder of Business Partners' predecessor in name - the Small Business Development Corporation Limited - has been appointed as Honorary Patron of the company.
This follows his decision to retire from his position as chairman of the company, after 17 years of service. Rupert has been succeeded as chairman by Theo van Wyk, who served as deputy chairman since 2005.
Nazeem Martin, managing director of Business Partners says the technical assistance, mentoring and consulting that Rupert insisted be part of the finance package offered by Business Partners to small businesses, is what ensured the success of these ventures, and through that, the sustainability of the company itself. They are therefore proud that he will be retaining his links with the company as an Honorary Patron due to his strong interest in the development of SMEs in South Africa.
Support to 69 000 businesses
"Rupert is a proud member of a family that has made a unique and substantial contribution to the development of small business in South Africa," Martin says. "We are proud of our association with him and the Rupert family, and thank him for his leadership and for the inspiration that will carry us forward. On his watch as chairman, Business Partners has, since its inception, supported over 69 000 businesses with direct financial assistance of over R12,5 billion. These small businesses have created or maintained more than 545 000 jobs."
He says that with the help and guidance of Rupert, Business Partners Limited has become the leading enabler of small businesses in South Africa, and has since 2007 spread its wings to set up operations in Kenya, Madagascar and Rwanda. Funds have also been secured to begin operations in Mozambique, Namibia, Malawi, Zambia and in time Zimbabwe.