THE TOWNSHIP LAD WHO CREATED A VIRTUAL MALL

I decided to start an online store where people can buy anything, anytime and anywhere they are. One would say I decided to start an Amazon in South Africa.”

Diketso Setho (25) is the founder of Ghetto Heroes (GH), a mall that integrates township retail shops into one space. GH mall is slowly becoming a trusted platform for local businesses to sell accessories, local art, clothing, and other things. Over and above that Diketso is a social entrepreneur who is also involved with various nonprofit organisations.

TransformSA Online reached out to Diketso to learn more about his journey in business.

TSAO: What inspired you to start your own business?
DS: I started GH Mall because I was unemployed, I thought since I am unemployed let me start selling various products like Avon, Tupperware, and others. So I thought I wouldn’t want to do this the hard way by going door to door. I utilised my programming skills to build an online mall. I decided to start an online store where people can buy anything, anytime and anywhere they are. One would say I decided to start an Amazon in South Africa.

TSAO: When was your business founded?
DS: My business was founded in February 2020.

TSAO: What were some of the challenges that you have encountered?
DS: One of the biggest challenges was getting small businesses to use the platform. This is because most of them are not tech-savvy, they are still used to selling their products door-to-door. The other challenge was getting buyers to
use the platform, there were rumours that people were not getting the right products delivered to them.

TSAO: Who are your clients?
DS: Our target market is township based small to medium-sized businesses. We help business owners who want to sell their products online but can’t aford to have an e-commerce site built for them. We are also looking towards working
with wholesalers.

TSAO: What makes your business unique?
DS: Our business model is not just an online store, but it is an online mall. This means within our platform you’ll get many stores selling diferent products. The same way, you’ll fnd various stores in the bricks and mortar mall. The process of using our platform is simple: All you have to do is register as a customer or a vendor. From there, you’ll get approved as a vendor, and once you’re approved you can set up your own online store within our platform..

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