The CEO of Catalyst for Growth (C4G) – Sifiso Ndwandwe unpacked the organisation’s reason for existence and how it adds value to both SMMEs, business development service providers (BDS) corporates at the 4th Annual Africa enterprise development and entrepreneurship investment agenda supported by Transnet on the 21st and 22nd June.

The organisation was establish when it was found that there is a large flow of investment into ESD programmes, however, there is very little impact measurement and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) that is being done.

The introduction of the C4G platform is intended to increase the quality of BDS in the market, reward the best service providers, and help link SMMEs to growth capital. The data will improve SMME services and allow the investment community to reduce costs associated with sourcing SMMEs, while directing enterprise development and supplier (ESD) capital into high-achieving programmes.

C4G is designed to connect key players in the BDS marketplace and channel capital towards BDS providers that help SMMEs become truly investment-ready. C4G will publish non-attributable demographic and performance data on SMMEs that are being monitored through the platform.

The platform not only enables registered BDS providers to capture data and monitor the performance of their own SMME portfolios but it also enables them to compare their performance against the industry average, enabling them to see the impact they are having in the ESD space while facilitating investor identification of finance ready SMMEs.

C4G is currently looking for interested BDS corporate partners and providers to sign up onto the platform, and start using it to monitor their SMMEs.

“The discussion of the Catalyst for Growth Platform was relevant and vital as it unpacked the missing link in ESD. There is more than R20 billion invested in ESD in South Africa by corporates, hence the importance of monitoring and evaluating the impact that we are making. Not only is the tool important but it makes monitoring and evaluation central in our practice which offers room for organisations to rethink and redesign their strategies and above all improve them to obtain economic value” said Calisto Kondowe, the Senior Research Analyst at Global Invest Group – an advisory company that focusses on economic growth and development. “Over the years, Global Invest Group’s forums have become the largest gathering of decision-makers, investors, stakeholders, and policy makers.

Sifiso Ndwandwe joined other renowned speakers including Makhosazana Masilela – the Executive Manager at Transnet, Teresiah Simelane – The General Manager of Enterprise Development at The Innovation Hub, Thozamile Gwanya – CEO of ECRDA, Dionne Kerr – CEO of Siyakha Implementation Partners and Jayshree Naidoo the Head of Standard Bank Business Incubator.