Durban business fair celebrates 20 years of success

18 April 2018 | Web Article Number: ME20189491

Government & Municipal
SMME Development & Support
Social Development

FOR the past two decades, one of the primary platforms employed by the eThekwini Municipality to support emerging local entrepreneurs has been the Durban Business Fair (DBF), an annual event that allows them to showcase and market their products, network and create linkages.

This year, in a bid to further stimulate the growth and sustainability of small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs), the municipality will kick-start the DBF 20-year celebration programme by hosting the first Regional Fair at the Inner and Outer West of Durban in Hammarsdale Junction on 25-27 May.

The City is inviting all SMMEs to register for this three-day exhibition platform which will include a number of empowerment practises and seminars to be headlined by influential businesspeople. Interested businesses have until 16 May to register for the Inner and Outer West Regional Business Fair

Regional Business Fairs are a lead-up to the main Durban Business Fair due to take place at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre from 18 to 23 September. Entrepreneurs are urged to also start registering for the main Fair.

Mayor Zandile Gumede said this year is all about celebrating the positive impact the Fair has had on emerging businesses. “The Fair has become a key tool for the City to accelerate the development of SMMEs.”

Gumede said the Fair had grown from strength to strength and managed to produce a number of remarkable entrepreneurs that have contributed in reducing the high unemployment rate.

Deputy City Manager for Economic Development and Planning Cluster Phillip Sithole said: “While the Durban Business Fair programme is the tool to expose and equip emerging businesses, it also serves as a banner that showcases all the opportunities and services available in the Municipality to businesses so that they will know exactly how to access those.”

He added that this year will also be about celebrating excellence amongst Durban businesses as some were conceived or launched twenty years ago at City Hall where the Fair started as a small event of crafters.

“This year’s key focus will be on youth development and township economies revitalisation. The Fair is the strategic platform to achieve economic development goals as it attracts esteemed businesses, private sector partners and investors who can identify opportunities and partner with us in driving radical economic transformation,” said Sithole.

The main DBF will provide a wide range of opportunities from various sectors including textile and clothing, technology, film, property and many more.

The South and North Regional Fairs will be hosted in July and August respectively and the dates will be communicated closer to the events.

The registration fee for SMMEs is R200 and forms are obtainable from the Business Support, Tourism and Markets Unit, 199 Anton Lembede formerly Smith) Street, 7th Floor Embassy Building. Forms are also accessible at the municipality’s website, www.durban.gov.za. 

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