Business Watch

EAST COAST RADIO  |  Podcast , ±1 min episodes every 2 days  | 
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

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Willowton reintroduces KZN yellowfish to the Baynespruit

The re-introduction – or inoculation programme – is a strategic part of a broader commitment by Willowton Group to help improve the Baynespruit which is one of South Africa’s six most polluted rivers. The company has committed to monthly clean-ups of a 1-kilometre-long stretch of the Baynespruit River between the bridge at New Greytown Road (Bambatha Road) and Manning Avenue bridge in Pietermaritzburg. To date, six clean-ups which include the removal of refuse and invasive vegetation from the river and its banks, have been conducted.

Willowton Group has been working with stakeholders including DUCT (Dusi Umgeni Conservation Trust) as a fellow founder of the Baynespruit Conservancy in 2020 to clean the river and make environmental improvement efforts.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

Image: Provided

SANTACO announces biggest taxi fare rate to date

KwaZulu-Natal taxi commuters are urged to put more money aside as taxi fares will go up from Friday.

"The minimum that we increase by a rand we don't go below that, but then the maximum is an amount that is going to be utilised or debated by the taxi owners taking into account the expenses that we are actually incurring currently," says the spokesperson of the SA National Taxi Council in KZN, Sifiso Shangase.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

Image: Steve Bhengu

Radisson Blu Hotel, Durban wins prestigious Mayoral Achievement Award

Radisson Hotel Group is one of the world's largest hotel groups with nine distinctive hotel brands, and more than 1,700 hotels in operation and under development in 120 countries. The Group’s overarching brand promise is Every Moment Matters with a signature Yes I Can! service ethos.

Owner of the Radisson Blu Hotel, Durban, Umhlanga and Oceans Development, Vivian Reddy, expressed appreciation to the eThekwini Municipality for the prestigious recognition as Investor of the Year in the city of Durban.

He said that the R4,5-billion development is the largest mixed-use project in South Africa, creating 26 000 jobs during construction and a further 3 500 permanent positions. Reddy further expressed his faith in the future of the city of Durban, the province of KwaZulu-Natal, and the country.

“The mega development will consist of 600 luxury apartments; a 30 000-square meter luxury mall which opens in October 2022, showcasing various international fashion brands and creating Durban’s own ‘Diamond Walk’ as well as world-class restaurants. South African favored brands, Woolworths and Checkers will also feature,” said Reddy.

Image: Vivian Reddy and Hotel GM Marius Earle

Now is the best time to invest in Zimbali Lakes

With the overwhelming demand for luxury estate living on the North Coast of KZN and the multi-award-winning Zimbali brand behind it, Zimbali Lakes is set up to yield positive capital appreciation for its investors paired with a family lifestyle for all residents in a pet-friendly environment.

The vision of Zimbali Lakes is to optimise the natural richness of the surrounding landscapes with sweeping views of the ocean, forest, fairways, and lakes. Residents enjoy peace of mind, freedom, and all-around natural beauty within a gated community protected by 24-hour state-of-the-art security.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
Zimbali Lakes

Radisson Hotel Group opens its 14th South African hotel in Durban

Radisson Hotel Group is proud to announce its entry into its fourth South African city, Durban, with the opening of the Radisson Blu Hotel, Durban Umhlanga. This opening brings the Group’s portfolio in one of its key African markets, South Africa, to fourteen hotels in operation and two under development.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch.

Image: Supplied

BOXER is celebrating 45 years as the community champion

“The key to Boxer’s growth and longevity is the constant endeavor to be more for our customer, every day. We live the brand across the company and remain focused on providing a service to shoppers that are memorable,” said Boxer’s Managing Executive Marek Masojada.

The Company, which trades across three formats, Superstore, Liquors and Build, has entrenched itself in the hundreds of communities that it serves by constantly building on its ‘people first’ mantra. “We employ locally, we empower our teams through education and further learning within our Boxer Training Department and most importantly we always seek to help the communities in the areas we trade through our Ubuntu Projects Division. That is non-negotiable,” added Masojada.

The Boxer Discount model is a relatively unique form of retail in South Africa that relies on a targeted range of relevant items on shelves and a focus on confined labels to bring home vibrant and often unbeatable promotions.

Coupled with constantly evolving service departments including Fruit and Veg, Deli, Bakery, and the very popular Butchery, Boxer also offers a range of Value Added Services to its customers and offers a warm and welcome destination to millions of SASSA Grantees who receive this important monthly grant.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

SA's airline capacity has just been reduced by 40%

Comair, who operates and British Airways flights has taken to social media to announce that all flights will be suspended pending the securing of funding.

Comair CEO Glenn Orsmond said: “We deeply regret the inconvenience this suspension will cause our customers. We did everything we could to avoid it. Comair, the BRPs, and the lenders are working all out to get the funding in place so we can resume our normal flight schedule as soon as possible.”

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

Image Credit:

Over R50m worth of Smart Shopper points spent on fuel

Pick n Pay’s Smart Shopper programme now has over 9.5 million active customers and the company has noticed an increase in the number of customers redeeming their rewards both in-store and at the pump during the pandemic as the economic crisis hit.

Pick n Pay and Takealot reach agreement to launch grocery offer on Mr. D

Pick n Pay and Takealot announced today that their two companies have signed a commercial agreement which will enable customers across South Africa to buy Pick n Pay food, groceries, and liquor on a new platform on the Mr D app. 

The Pick n Pay Smart Shopper loyalty program will be embedded in the Mr. D app so that customers will be able to earn points when buying Pick n Pay groceries on the Mr. D app.

Pick n Pay CEO Pieter Boone said:

“Alongside other initiatives we are announcing today, this is a new era for Pick n Pay and for its customers.  There is huge potential for omnichannel retail in this country. Through this agreement with Takealot, we intend to regain market leadership in online grocery and to do so in a sustainable and profitable way. We plan to increase our online revenue eight-fold by FY26.”

Takealot’s Executive Chairman, Kim Reid, said:

“We are hugely excited to be partnering with the brand and the people at Pick n Pay, who share our values at the Takealot Group.  Mr. D’s 2.5 million customers will be delighted to see a Pick n Pay grocery offers on the platform.  The combination of Pick n Pay’s reach, quality, and pricing together with Takealot Group’s leading technology and scalable delivery network is a recipe for success. Scalability will be a huge advantage. Takealot Group, at peak, currently delivers over 5 million packages per month, with the ability and ambition to serve many more customers as demand for this offer grows.” 

The two parties intend to launch the service on a trial basis in the Cape Town area in August 2022 and roll it out rapidly across the country.  The service will be available nationwide by the end of FY23.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch
Image: Supplied

You can now turn your extra car into a mini car rental service

RentMyRide is South Africa’s first car sharing marketplace where you can book any car you want, wherever you want it, from a community of local car owners in major cities and towns. You can choose from a unique selection of cars near you, while owners earn an income to offset the cost of their car.

We founded RentMyRide to allow mobility for everyone and change the way that people use cars. With the average car sitting idle 65% of the time, we knew there had to be a better way to put these cars to better use. By providing a safe and seamless way for people to share cars with each other we want to change the way the world thinks about car use and car ownership.

A pioneer of the sharing economy and travel industry, RentMyRide has a safe, supportive community with over 25,000 members. Whether it is a Polo for commuting to work, a small truck to help out on moving days, or a sporty convertible, RentMyRide lets you book cars that will be part of your experience.

RentMyRide is building a car-sharing platform based on trust & community. Keeping you safe is a top priority.

WR Van Der Merwe has more in Business Watch

Image Credit:

Comrades Marathon welcomes FNB as new banking sponsor

FNB will partner with The Ultimate Human Race as the Comrades Marathon's official financial services provider for the next three years.

"FNB has a long history of supporting participation sports, and we are excited to be a part of the world-renowned Comrades Marathon. This partnership is in line with our sponsorship strategy, which is centered on fostering social cohesion through sports and other initiatives," says Bonga Sebesho, FNB Brand Experience Head.

"Our participation and investment in this initiative also demonstrate our level of commitment to the reopening of our country and economy. Furthermore, we believe that the marathon and associated tourism are crucial in reviving KwaZulu-Natal's regional economy. FNB is dedicated to maintaining its reputation as a trusted partner to its retail and commercial clients, as well as the broader society,” adds Sebesho.

Ngcobo has welcomed FNB as a new CMA sponsor, saying, “It is with a huge sense of excitement that we conclude this sponsorship agreement with FNB and welcome them to the Comrades Marathon family.”

Ngcobo adds, “We are delighted to be working with the FNB team and look forward to the passion, positivity, and value they bring to the relationship. The CMA is immensely pleased to be associated with this top South African brand.”

PHOTO: FNB Director Provincial, Asheen Magjee and CMA Chairperson, Mqondisi Ngcobo after signing the three-year agreement

SAB Foundation: Calling all social innovators and entrepreneurs

The South African Breweries (SAB) in partnership with the SAB Foundation, has established the SAB SHARP Awards.

Founded in 2010, the SAB Foundation provides funding for small, medium, and micro-sized enterprises in order to contribute to the economic and social empowerment of historically disadvantaged persons through entrepreneurship development.

The SAB Foundation’s primary beneficiaries are women, youth, people living with disabilities, and people living in rural areas, from low-income backgrounds. More than R425 million to date has been invested in social innovation, disability empowerment, and the development of SMMEs.

Online applications open at midday on 25 April 2022 and close at midday on 1 June 2022. Only applications submitted on the SAB Foundation web portal will be accepted. Apply now:
Enter here

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