Johannesburg, 27 May 2017 – After months of planning, Riversands Incubation Hub officially launched The Yard on 25 May with much success. There was a festive mood as entrepreneurs from Riversands and surrounding areas exhibited outside the retail store and networked with guests from around the area.
The Yard is a dedicated retail space which stocks goods produced by entrepreneurs on the campus north of Fourways between Dainfern and Diepsloot. Selected SMEs from further afield have also been invited to sell their wares at The Yard. The variety of goods available at The Yard ranges from handmade garments and jewellery through to bags with recycled billboards as the lining, beautiful custom-made furniture made at Riversands Incubation Hub as well as comfortable ottomans made using discarded PET bottles; there is also a range of organic dog treats.
The CEO of Century Property Developments, Mark Corbett who was responsible for the establishment of Riversands was also present on the day. He expressed his excitement about the business incubator’s new offering, saying it has wonderful products and it’s great that now there’s a unique central place that showcases what everyone at the Hub produces. He added, “Well done to the SMEs. The Yard is definitely worth the visit.” The local businessman also put his money where he mouth is by buying some of the products on offer along with other visitors.
The Yard is worth the visit
CEO of Riversands Incubation Hub, Jenny Retief shares Corbett’s sentiments. According to Retief, Riversands has created a space for its entrepreneurs to promote their goods in an environment conducive to attracting customers. “The variety and talent behind the goods on show is clearly evident and we feel privileged to be in a position to offer this outlet to SMEs who often struggle to gain traction in the consumer market,” she said.
Retief added, “The William Nicol has been diverted past Riversands Incubation Hub to diminish the time spent on upgrading the next section of the road. This is giving us much more visibility to the passing traffic and we invite residents from the neighbouring suburbs to pay us a visit, since we’re on the doorstep of estates in Fourways, Dainfern and Broadacres. Goods on sale at The Yard aren’t available anywhere else and all purchases support South Africa’s emerging innovators and entrepreneurs.”
Many of the small business owners present at the launch were enthusiastic about The Yard and very appreciative. “This is an excellent opportunity for us to showcase our products and it exposes us to potential clients. It’s also a great place for people to shop and find unique products,” said Riversands entrepreneur Joel Segwale, founder of Monotho Interiors, a furniture manufacturing business.
“The place is lovely, we needed this as entrepreneurs. We’re very happy, thank you Riversands for taking care of us,” said Cindy Malaza, founder of Timeless Opulence, makers of bespoke furniture and quality custom fittings.
The Yard is open daily from 08h00 to 16h30. With The Yard, entrepreneurs enjoy favourable commercial terms, brand exposure and access to business support services. Success is measured by an increase in an entrepreneur’s sales, growth in client base as well as the opening of other, additional market avenues for the business. What’s more, small businesses retailing at The Yard are primarily black-owned small and micro-enterprises. This makes The Yard an ideal platform for corporates looking to earn BEE points through enterprise development sponsorship and procurement spend.
By Simangele Mzizi