Funding from Anglo American’s enterprise development arm, Zimele, has helped Mfodwa Trading Enterprise in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga, make a real difference to the prosperity of the local Acornhoek community.
In 2011, Zimele provided an R74 000 loan to Lucy Ndlovu, which she used to purchase machinery, equipment and material, in order to start Mfodwa Trading Enterprise, which manufactures lintels locally. These load-bearing building components are crucial to construction, and are found over portals, doors, and windows.
Ndlovu notes that Zimele’s support has not only furthered her business goals, but has helped community development.
“Acornhoek community members previously had to hire transport and travel long distances in order to purchase lintels, as there was a notable lack of viable options in the area.
“However, since Zimele helped me start Mfodwa Trading Enterprise, local businesses are able to purchase directly from my company, which is centrally based, and do not have to outlay large amounts of money on transport.”
Ndlovu notes that prior to acquiring Zimele’s assistance, she was largely unaware of business planning and strategies. Therefore, she adds, Zimele’s input was crucial in ensuring that she was able to successfully launch Mfodwa Trading Enterprise, manage the business, and make an impression on her target market.
The company currently has nine permanent employees, and serves the whole of the Bushbuckridge community. Besides community members, it also sells to local hardware stores.
Since its formation in 1989, Zimele’s unique approach to enterprise development has realised great rewards. From 2008 to the end of 2011, its four funds have provided R567 million in funding, supported 1,085 companies, and completed 1,481 loan transactions. Further, the funded businesses employ 19,575 people, and achieved a collective annual turnover of R2,4 billion.
Zimele’s Acting Managing Director, Lia Vangelatos concludes that the Ndlovu’s story is a prime example of the real and impactful difference that Zimele is able to engender.
“Zimele’s ultimate intention is to build the capacity and prosperity of the communities in which Anglo American operates, by enabling black entrepreneurs to create successful small and medium sized enterprises. By helping small companies such as Lucy’s, we are empowering entrepreneurs to realise their dream of owning businesses that can make a real difference in their communities.”