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TEP: contributing 70,000+ jobs and more than R5bn to GDP

Tuesday, 05 February 2013

Not many companies in South Africa and even fewer NGO’s can lay claim to a contribution of more than 70,000 jobs created and over R5.6 billion contributed to the country’s GDP. The Tourism Enterprise Partnership, widely known as TEP, is possibly the only NGO that can not only make this claim, but have had it independently audited and verified by SizweNtsalubaGobodo.

Chief Executive of TEP, Dr Salifou Siddo stated emphatically: “A key pillar for job creation is the development of entrepreneurship. TEP supports this by providing SMMEs with access to information, skills, markets and finance. Strong partnerships are required for expanded growth and TEP’s Enterprise Development Portfolio (EDP) offers a proven and sustainable solution that allows any interested organisation to invest their ED funds with TEP. The investing partner will earn upfront B-BBEE points for Enterprise Development and with business development offices situated in every province; TEP has the infrastructure to expand investment contributions to the most remote areas in SA”.

Although TEP is in part funded by National Department of Tourism, it still has to source a major part of its funding from the Private Sector.

Peter-John Mitrovich, General Manager of Grosvenor Tours said “As an organisation that showcases the beauty of the Southern Africa region, it was vital to our integrity as a Southern African Tour Operator to give back to the communities, the environment, the people and the places that make this a top holiday destination. We take the utmost pride in combining the uplifting and inspiring elements of the tourism industry with a cultural experience that not only informs visitors about the reality of South African lifestyle, but also allows them to interact in a beneficial and lasting way. With this in mind, we wanted to have a national impact on the tourism industry and thus there was only one way to go and that was to support the Tourism Enterprise Partnership with a sizeable contribution. TEP uses our investment as part of its resource pot for rolling out enterprise development projects and funding for small tourism businesses.”

Although TEP is not a funding agency; it has a Business Development Fund (BDF), which can be used on a cost-sharing basis to contribute towards the cost of business services for registered TEP members. Access to business services such as professional and operational assistance, marketing, training and quality assurance is indispensable for the growth and sustainability of any business, especially for small tourism businesses. However, many small tourism businesses do not have the adequate resources to buy these services.

The fund builds the capacity of small tourism businesses and assists them to respond more effectively to commercial opportunities. It serves as a catalyst for their participation in the formal tourism value chain and, ultimately, their contribution to industry growth and job creation.

For over a decade TEP has successfully delivered on its enterprise development mandate and consistently exceeds its targets. TEP has established a firm reputation for operating with integrity and according to sound governance principles. As a Section 21 (non-profit) organisation, TEP is geared to keep its administration and management costs to a minimum with the majority of the funds benefiting SMMEs directly.

TEP is led by a board of prominent business leaders as well as a dynamic management team (situated in Rosebank, Johannesburg) that delivers innovative leadership in tourism development projects. TEP's EDP team are at the forefront of enterprise development in South Africa and are redefining small business development through this initiative. (www.tep.co.za )

In terms of Code 600 of the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice, companies must allocate 3% of net profit after tax to enterprise development. Many companies grapple with enterprise development as it is not part of their core business, and only about 30% of South African listed companies are currently compliant. TEP’s EDP serves as a conduit for organisations to earn points on their B-BBEE scorecards whilst contributing to job creation and transformation in South Africa

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