The companies – which are regarded as future leaders in the technology, education, and construction industries – were honoured on Monday, 12 December at a graduation ceremony that took place at the JSE, where their founders were awarded for successfully completing the nine-month programme.
“We congratulate all 16 companies that graduated from the programme over the past 18 months. These companies have displayed outstanding commitment to improving their competitiveness and performance, which is reflected in their phenomenal growth,” says Vuyo Lee, the JSE’s director of marketing and corporate affairs.
Apart from assisting the companies to raise capital and access new markets in the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, and Africa, the programme has also provided an ecosystem of advisors, mentors and networks that helped propel the graduate companies into their next growth phase.
Prior to fully rolling out the JSE Enterprise Acceleration Programme (Jeap) earlier this year, the JSE launched a pilot in 2021 that recruited five high-growth companies, namely Mobiz, Signcraft Africa, Synatic, Saryx and Sendmarc. They were later joined this year by the first cohort of the programme comprising 11 companies from various industry sectors. The companies that joined the acceleration programme in 2022 were Spark Schools, Finclusion, Clevva, IContact BPO, Inoxico, StructureIT, DealX , FlowCentric , Nafasi Water, iiDentifii and TSK Construction.
Jeap aims to support the growth of medium-sized companies sustainably, thereby driving employment and economic growth in South Africa. Its development was a culmination of extensive research and consultation processes that the JSE undertook with over 22 incubators, policymakers, financial institutions, and SME development experts. The JSE collaborated with SME incubation specialists, Endeavor, to launch and implement the programme.
Since the programme began, it has assisted the companies to register a strong business performance. They have raised a total of R1 bn in capital, which has enabled them to drive their expansion. Furthermore, the companies have grown their average annual revenue by 56% to a combined R2 billion in turnover, with the strongest performer growing its turnover by 250%.
In terms of employment creation, the graduates have increased their workforce by an average of 32% to nearly 2,500 employees.
“We are confident that the mentoring and coaching the JSE Enterprise Acceleration Programme graduates received will propel them from being medium-sized companies to large enterprises that create jobs and contribute significantly to the South African economy,” says Lee.
In 2023, the JSE will welcome the second cohort of 14 companies to join the programme which includes Makwande, Take Note IT, KGB Holdings, 4-Sure, 555 Media Hub, Data Innovators, Tautona Holdings, Lethabo Exploration, Zammane Group, Projectized Management, Total Serve, Advannotech, MResources, and Opal Mining. All of the companies in the 2023 cohort are black-owned, with over 30% of the companies being founded by women.
“We are excited to work with the second cohort of companies and we are hopeful that they will take advantage of the tools and resources that our JSE Acceleration Programme has to offer to leapfrog their businesses into the next growth trajectory,” concludes Lee.