Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies has launched the Small Business Connect newspaper, which will help close the information gap and provide small business with the information necessary to make their ventures successful.
“We have got a big knowledge gap,” Davies said on Tuesday 3 September at the launch of the newspaper that will be distributed freely nationwide. The paper is published monthly.
“The newspaper fits in with the overall thrust of this administration in supporting small businesses. It is an information exercise about what you need to do to start a small business, where one can go for mentorship opportunities,” he said.
The newspaper, which is aimed at small business in its first edition, covers issues such as how to register a business as well as advice for those wanting to start their own business. The first edition of the 20-page publication also includes a business support service directory as well as policy issues.
Davies pointed out that issues that are specific to the small business industry are not always covered in commercial media.
“All of these things will not be covered [in the commercial media] hence a need for this vehicle so that small business can be provided with information,” he said.
The newspaper is published for the Department of Trade and Industry (dti) by SA Business Owner and Co cc — a partnership of 24 months.
Statistically, of every seven small businesses established every year, only two will be operational in a year.
“This tells us that small business requires commitment, effort and involvement,” said Davies.
The newspaper’s print run is of 30 000 copies a month, which are distributed to 200 distribution points around the country, including at provincial government departments.
Publisher Christoff Oosthuysen agreed with Davies that there was an information gap in the small business world – this, despite the fact that most people are employed by small business owners.