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South Africa

Stirring up e-commerce in South Africa


One of South Africa’s top e-commerce companies and most-loved brands continues to set the standard for online businesses as recognised by uAfrica’s eCommerce Awards. Investec’s blog recently featured an interview with Andrew Smith, co-founder and CEO of Yuppiechef, where he shares his views on how to forge ahead and be remarkable when it comes to delivering online.

What is your take on the South African e-commerce landscape?

E-commerce in South Africa is growing fast and certainly getting a lot more attention than it did a few years ago but it is still a tiny fraction of all retail – around 1% of South Africa’s R500bn (US$38bn) total. For the last two decades, e-commerce was mostly about the pure-play pioneers such as Kalahari and Netflorist, and more recently Takealot, Zando and ourselves. The exciting movement now is by the traditional retailers like Woolworths who are starting to invest properly in their omni-channel offerings.

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Tumi Moitse, a South African floral designer with a passion for creating luxury gifting experiences for her clients

Who doesn’t like receiving flowers? They cheer us, they brighten our days, they remind us fondly of the people who are giving them as gifts to us. For entrepreneur Tumi Moitse, her love of flowers started at an early age. Today she is taking that passion and creating a luxury floral design and gifting business, BlakSaffron Boutique, that helps her clients to express their feelings through the floral experiences she creates.

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Brother’s A3 Business Smart Multi-Function Centre series delivers business class performance

Brother International, a leader in home and business IT peripherals that focuses on the ‘Customer-First’ approach, has introduced an all-new Full A3 Multi-Function Centre Series for small and medium-sized businesses. The 2 models in the series, the MFC-J3930DW and the MFC-J3530DW support high print volumes with excellent total cost of ownership. “Brother’s new Multi-Function Centre Series has been engineered for business use. Both models in the series are versatile, reliable and robust, which is ideal for small and medium-sized businesses with large print volume requirements,” says Dale de Villiers, Marketing Manager at Brother South Africa.

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How to scale up your business


We look at what it takes to grow a start-up business. The biggest obstacle to scaling a business is often the entrepreneurs themselves, says Harry Welby-Cooke, Southern African Co-Master Licensee of ActionCOACH. “Start-ups are fast-moving, dynamic and chaotic,” he says. “That chaos can be a drug. You need to remove the chaos to scale, and so for entrepreneurs, the biggest challenge is often learning to let go.” Entrepreneurs’ identities may be tied to what they do – whether they’re chefs or software developers but to scale their businesses, they need to move into business-owner mind-set, Welby-Cooke says. Stacey Brewer, CEO and co-founder of SPARK Schools, says: “There’s no more winging it. You have to evolve from having control over every area of the business, to implementing policies and procedures, hiring people and letting them make mistakes.”

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