GEORGE NEWS - Garden Route Mall launched a campaign in January to find students with unique business ideas that can potentially benefit the Garden Route and become sustainable businesses. Tumi Masango, the mall's marketing manager, says this year they partnered with Standard Bank and the George Business Chamber in order to achieve maximum exposure within their range.
Masango together with Standard Bank visited 12 local schools and reached 6 632 learners. "The young minds were given two months to submit proposals, after which a panel of judges from the centre management office went through all the proposals and chose the top three, based on the entry criteria," says Masango.
The top 10 were invited to the Shark Tank finale at Town Lodge on 3 May to present their business proposals. After each representation, the Shark Tank panel asked questions, forcing them to think on their feet about ways to empower their ideal plan.
The panel consisted of Denise van den Berg of Seda, Tatenda Mapeto of George Business Chamber, Fuad Choonara of Standard Bank, Rion Olivier of Garden Route Mall, Ricky Wallis of Browns Jewellery and Masango herself.
Top of the top
Jesse le Roux of Rundle College was placed third and received R5 000 for "The Wooden Scoop" idea, which entails a convenient and environmentally friendly way of shopping.
Luke Stead of McKinlay Reid was second with his project "Isangqa" (a Xhosa word meaning "circle"). He makes hula hoops in different sizes to accommodate all sizes of people and the selling package includes a pamphlet with instructions and games.
Emihle Tshangana of York High School took the winner's prize of R10 000 with "The Water Bungee" concept, which will assist sustainable water usage over winter and aims to benefit households within the Garden Route. Garden Route Mall wishes not only the top 10 young entrepreneurs, but everyone who submitted entries, the very best of luck in their future endeavours.
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