Business Watch

EAST COAST RADIO  |  Podcast , ±1 min episodes every 2 days  |  Broadcast schedule  | 
Business Watch is a daily feature on East Coast Radio - on-air at 06:30 and 18:30, respectively. It covers local and international innovations, market movements and business related events. The feature is hosted by economist and award-winning radio producer, WR Van Der Merwe. To have your industry or business featured , send an e-mail to Businesswatch@ecr.co.za

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26
OCT

Durban's Webhelp grows almost seven-fold in a year

BPO [business process outsourcing] is one of the fastest-growing sectors in South Africa with significant year-on-year growth,” commented Tammy Chetty, Managing Director of Webhelp South Africa. “We’ve had a significant government and stakeholder support leaning into the incredible job opportunities this sector creates for young, unemployed individuals with little or no work experience.”

Chetty said the quality of skills found in South Africa and the high level of English-speaking employees have seen it become a ‘hotspot for BPO’, with organisations across the world looking to South Africa to offshore non-core work packages and capitalize on the value proposition South Africa has to offer.

Beyond the skill level demonstrated by the young South African workforce, Chetty said the country had set itself apart in the BPO sector through the sheer resilience shown during the pandemic. When so many companies were forced to shut down and retrench, Webhelp was doing the unthinkable by opening up a new branch in Umhlanga Ridge – providing jobs at a crucial time in the country’s economic history.

“Moreover, I feel that the industry showed great resilience by coming together and working in partnership to lobby the role-players in the sector to secure essential service status during the lockdown,” continued Chetty. “This is one of the sectors that employ the youth. Shutting our doors would have left many young unemployed individuals resulting in greater risk for families and society as a whole.”

She said many competing countries were not able to sustain operations during this time, forcing them to shut doors. However, Webhelp was able to remain open with essential service status and transition by adhering to COVID protocols in the workplace and through employing flexible work operations.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
25
OCT

Toys R Us reveals this year's top trending toys list for the 2022 festive season

“Social consciousness, post-pandemic living, nostalgia, and consumers looking for value have all impacted this year's toy trends,” says Catherine Jacoby, Marketing Manager at Toys R Us. “Consumers are driven more than ever by experiences and parents are looking for toys that give their children memories outside of the digital world.”

She explains that this year parents can expect screen-free toys to top the list of trends and toys that encourage hands-on play and skill-building. “We’re so excited to kick off the most magical time of the year with the coolest and most sought-after toys of the season.”

She adds that this year's list features a broad assortment of gift ideas for every age and interest and highlights twenty-two hero products that make gift shopping easy. “From active and sensory play to play sets featuring kids' favourite characters, this year's top toy list encourages grownups to wrap up an extra-special gift that sparks hours of imaginative play and years of memories,” she says.

“By identifying the top play trends so we’re making it easier than ever to find toys every kid will love, spreading joy and delight to families and kids of all ages,” Jacoby explains. “We’re expecting a retro revival this year across older age groups as collectible toys are topping the trends.”
For more information visit the website or follow Toys R Us on Instagram and Facebook #ToysRUsTopToys2022 #BigBookofToys

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
24
OCT

Lift launches flights to Durban and expands fleet

Bookings for the Johannesburg - Durban route are set to go live on 22 September 2022 and the first flights will start operating on 26 October 2022 with 3 return flights per day. Booking dates for the Cape Town - Durban route will be confirmed in the coming weeks with flights expected to operate from November.

In addition to the new route, LIFT will be increasing its flight frequency between Johannesburg and Cape Town with up to 14 flights per day.

Travelers to or from Durban can now look forward to all the perks flying LIFT has to offer. These include complimentary snacks, coffee from Vida e Cafe, extra-friendly service from the stylish cabin crew, and flexible flight changes with unlimited penalty-free changes, no cancellation fees, and quick and easy refunds into your LIFT wallet. LIFT also offers selected dog-friendly flights making travel with your fur baby a breeze.

KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, MEC Siboniso Duma expressed his excitement and appreciation about LIFT’s launch. “We are looking forward to LIFT’s launch and to welcoming thousands of tourists to our shores. The recent launch of Tourism Month on the 15th of September 2022 demonstrated our readiness to host visitors that have chosen to make KwaZulu-Natal their destination of choice.”

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
Book Here!
17
OCT

Rewardsco Introduces the "Half Day, Double Pay" Revolution!

After trialing the new dual shift programme to great success earlier in 2022, Rewardsco is now rolling it out to a larger pool of 150 high-performing sales agents, with even more opportunities for expansion on the horizon.


Although other players in the industry see such programmes as a risk, Rewardsco sees potential. The world is changing and as proud disruptors of the status quo, Rewardsco is always looking to subvert traditional ways of doing things in favour of progress for both the business and its people.

The pandemic pushed the need for work-life balance to the forefront, so Rewardsco set out to meet this need while still ensuring the rapid growth of the business.


To date, Rewardsco has seen more than 15% increase in sales performance, a 10% increase in daily attendance, and a 100% increase in data efficiencies, meaning that agents are earning more commission than ever before.

In addition to the dual shift programme, Rewardsco hires experienced telesales, insurance, and customer service agents throughout the year and is one of the very few call centres where jobseekers can just walk into their premises at 2 Ncondo Place on the Umhlanga Ridge during business hours for an immediate interview.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
Apply here: rewardscocareers.com
11
OCT

Master Builders KZN Annual Awards celebrates excellence

The President of Master Builders KwaZulu-Natal, Marcus Peter Gonzalves applauded all the entrants and stated that the Association proudly hosted its Annual Awards to celebrate excellence in the construction industry, thereby showcasing the hard work, dedication, high standards, and superior quality demonstrated by its members. “All of these ingredients culminate in this celebration of construction excellence, a culture which is continuously promoted by the Association,” said Gonzalves. He reiterated that these are challenging economic times and that all stakeholders should join hands to resuscitate the construction industry.

Vikashnee Harbhajan, the Executive Director of the Association was pleased to take members through this journey of excellence and presented the recipients of the 2022 awards for excellence in Construction and Health and Safety. She added that the Association commended its members for maintaining a high standard of quality and workmanship and that those who aspire towards Health and Safety excellence save lives, and the Association proudly honoured its members for displaying such high levels of commitment.

Special awards were presented for outstanding and positive contributions to the KwaZulu-Natal construction industry. The Association congratulates the recipients of the following special awards:
• Award of Merit: Dirk Jacobus Francois Louw from MET Builders
• Supplier of the Year: RotoTank KZN
• Woman in Construction: Sarah Unsworth from Southern Natal Construction
• Health and Safety Person of the Year: Dr Joseph D. Khoza from WBHO Construction (Pty) Ltd
• Supreme Award for Health and Safety: Form-Scaff Durban South
• Supreme Award for Excellence in Construction: Smith and Winfield
• Overall Winner: WBHO Construction KZN
The Overall Winner award is presented to a Master Builders KwaZulu-Natal member company for demonstrating overall excellence in both the Association’s Excellence in Construction and Health and Safety competitions. The Association congratulates WBHO for clinching this award for the 2nd year in a row.
The Association extends its sincere gratitude to its marketing partners for the event:
• Thekweni Reinforcing (Pty) Ltd
• Builders
• THE FEDERATED EMPLOYERS MUTUAL ASSURANCE COMPANY (RF) (PTY) LTD
• Patcon Building & Civil Engineering Contractors (Pty) Ltd
• Khonzi Trading & Projects
• Grinaker LTA
• Stefanutti Stocks Coastal
The Association salutes all its members!

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
06
OCT

Get your FREE Jonsson Workwear VIZI Belt today

Twenty-seven million people use our roads daily, with the majority including workers and students on their daily commute. Safety on our roads is a discussion all South Africans should be having. Poor road and public transport infrastructure, lack of road safety education, and inadequate street lighting are among the causes of the accidents we see on our roads.

An alarming report from UCT’s Centre for Transport Studies reveals that 47 people are killed on our roads daily with that number climbing to 17 000 people annually. The report goes on to show that the main cause of child deaths in South Africa are a result of road accidents. We cannot simply ignore these statistics and must rally together to affect change and protect people on our roads.

Jonsson Workwear introduces its High Viz range of protective workwear that has been used to combat low-light conditions in a range of environments. Aware that poor visibility on the roads increases the number of accidents, the company together with The Jonsson Foundation is embarking on an initiative to protect all road users by increasing their visibility thereby reducing the risks of road accidents.

WR Van Der Merwe features Nick Jonsson, CEO and Executive Chairman of Jonsson Workwear in Business Watch
Get your Vizi-Belt here!
05
OCT

FUTURELIFE® fed up with Hunger

Mrs. Feziwe Gambo, an enthusiastic Principal at House-Kids Educare Centre, an ECD center located in the Ezimbokodweni area, south of Durban, sits at her office preparing for her day whilst also watching her children arrive at a bowl of FUTURELIFE® porridge. For many of the children in her centre, this is usually their first meal. Feziwe is filled with contentment as she knows that this meal will be enough to kick start their day and give them the much-needed energy and nutrition to begin learning in the right way.

According to FUTURELIFE® Managing Director, Mark Bunn, the campaign raised the awareness that was so desperately needed. He extends his thanks to the South African public and all the company’s partners and donors who supported the project in its mission to distribute five million meals.

“Furthermore, we are also grateful to the social media influencers and media houses who used their platforms to reach a wider audience; they have played a massive role in helping FUTURELIFE®, the Nelson Mandela Foundation & HOPE worldwide South Africa to raise awareness and benefit children in need.”
“With all of this support, we are well on our way to reaching our target,” Mark reports. “All funding received during Mandela Month will be going to the Nelson Mandela Foundation to support their ECD Programme. But it doesn’t end there.”

Mark says that FUTURELIFE® will continue to work with both the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the national NGO, HOPE worldwide SA, which has been collaborating with FUTURELIFE® for many years to address hunger and malnutrition amongst vulnerable children.

“Through valuable partnerships such as these, we will continue to reach more children with better nutrition,” says Mark. “FUTURELIFE® began in 2007 as a social project to help improve the lives of malnourished and disadvantaged people in Sub-Saharan Africa. The aim then was to create the most nutritional product possible at the lowest cost and with total convenience. Through ongoing scientific development, this ethos remains the driving force in the business today and we will continue to use both our products and our brand as a force for good.”

Every child deserves to get the right start in life and Mark believes that it is up to ordinary people to make this happen. “Let’s live every day as if it is Mandela Day,” Mark concludes.
03
OCT

Husqvarna's demolition robot from the future

Husqvarna Construction Products is a market-leading brand in the light construction equipment business. For more information on their range of machines, diamond tools, and services for concrete sawing & drilling, concrete surfaces & floors, and remote demolition.

The new unit also enables an improved overview of machine status that contributes to increased uptime and productivity. With various multi-tools and factory-installed packages available, productivity and areas of application can be quickly enhanced. The new range has also been engineered to facilitate easier troubleshooting, thus reducing downtime even further.

According to Lionel Zietsman, National Sales Manager at Husqvarna Construction, the new DXR models are third-party certified in terms of safety. An all-new remote-control unit makes precision operation easier than ever and enables the user to work in challenging areas with a remote-control range of up to 100 metres.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

Image: Provided
husqvarnacp.com
02
OCT

FFS Refiners' R350M job creation and Bitumen supply investment

There is a massive demand for bitumen in road construction projects in South Africa, especially related to the strategic infrastructure programmes outlined by President Cyril Ramaphosa that need to be addressed for South Africa’s economy to be put back on track. FFS Tank Terminals’ facilities will provide the industry with the security of a bulk supply of bitumen following the untimely demise of the local refining industry.

In addition, the Vala Zonke programme, announced by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula, aims to address the scourge of potholes nationally. The availability of bitumen will enable this critical infrastructure programme to meet its goals and keep the economy of South Africa moving forward.

The expansion consists of the construction of storage tanks with a total capacity of 26 500 cubic meters (26 500 000 litres) and will be implemented in two phases. Phase 1 will be constructed for rental and will include three storage tanks with a capacity of 7 500 cubic meters (7 500 000 litres), including product heating facilities, an import pipeline, two loading gantries, and two weighbridge facilities – phase 1 is already underway with all engineering design work completed and expected to operate by September 2023. Furthermore, South African civil and tank fabrication contractors have been appointed, ensuring job creation is prioritised during the expansion.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
11
SEP

Astron Energy starts roll-out its new look for of over 850 stations

Astron Energy Head of Marketing, Cambridge Mokanyane, said the rebrand provides Astron Energy with the opportunity to build out the customer experience even further, with a strong emphasis on non-fuel retail offerings.
According to Mokanyane, global research has shown that “ultimate convenience” is where all forecourts will eventually migrate to, offering everything from fuel to food options, banking facilities, online and e-commerce services, and drop-boxes for collecting deliveries.

In addition, the change to the new brand will see all Astron Energy service stations place careful emphasis and excellence on the basics, including bathroom facilities and lighting, as part of rejuvenating the overall customer experience.

In customer engagement surveys, clean, fresh, and safe bathroom facilities were right at the top of what consumers expect when pulling into a forecourt. This was followed by proper lighting and the associated security benefits.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
07
SEP

Wheels of the McDonald's computer school bus start rolling

The Nathoo family has been involved with Mcdonald's in KZN for 24 years. The late Mr. Dhiroo Nathoo, father to Prakash and Sanjay opened the first Restaurant in Durban in 1998. 

Prakash and Sanjay have been involved over the last 12 years, operating restaurants in and around Durban. 

At McDonald's they believe in the importance of being good neighbours and contributing to the communities they serve, by providing employment and giving back to charity.

They have over the years been involved in many community projects in Durban and the surrounding areas.
''In 2019 we aspired to start a journey of their own. To create something that is needed with the hope that it will evolve and become a long-lasting legacy.

Despite being put on hold we continued in the background to work on the curriculum and refining it. Working together with SETA and the Department of Education. Finally, 2 years later we are on the road. Our computer school bus is finally visiting schools and engaging with excited young learners.

The computer course has 8 theory sections, with an assessment at the end of each. The assessments that are completed by the learners are then compiled into a portfolio of evidence, which is then audited by an external moderator.''

The computer course outline is as follows;

Section 1 – History and Importance of Computers
Section 2 – Computer Ethics
Section 3 – Basic Computer Components
Section 4 – Basic Computer Skills and Navigation
Section 5 – Basic Word Processing
Section 6 – Basic Excel Processing
Section 7 – Basic PowerPoint Processing
Section 8 – Internet and Browser

''With this initiative, we aim to reach as many students within the Durban and greater surrounding area, who do not have access to technological infrastructures such as Computers, iPads, and the internet. We aim to connect the youth to the world and broaden their horizon, to all the opportunities that are available to them.

All of this could not have been possible without the blessing from McDonald’s SA, the Department of Education, Our Partners, MyMobile ZA and Newburn Shopfitters, and our DHANS Group Team…. All of whom supported and contributed to bringing this project to life.

To our loyal guests who visit our restaurants - WE thank you - you have made this possible.

We are humbled by what we have achieved thus far, and we remain committed to empowering as many young learners as we can on this journey of providing access young learners to computers and information technology.

This is just the start of our journey.

WE LOVIN' IT….."

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
mcdonalds.co.za

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