Uplifting the Township Economy

Absa Bank sets aside R10,5m to uplift the township economy

Absa Bank has extended a R3,5 million facility to eSpaza Sum Holdings to help the company in its endevour to uplift and modernise 22 spaza shops in Mamelodi and Pretoria West. A further R7 million will be extended to help uplift Mpumalanga and Limpopo spaza shops as the financial year progresses, taking the bank’s total contribution towards the transformation of township economies in the region to R10,5 million.

eSpaza Sum Managing Director and founder, Tshepo Seeta says: “Absa’s support will not only see the sustainable establishment of spaza shops but it is envisaged to create jobs and help these spaza shop’s net triple times more profit as they have in the past. The project has already seen transformed spaza’s record a 300% increase in airtime sales.”

eSpaza Sum aims to accelerate the transformation of 100% black-owned spaza shops into sustainable businesses that can compete with major retailers in the mainstream economy. The company secures greater access to markets, procurement, distribution channels and a variety of stock and merchandise at competitive pricing in partnership with Big Save, one of South Africa’s largest wholesalers. It also holds monthly store promotions on behalf of spaza shops and restores their images into well-structured, recognisable, brand backed and established businesses.

Absa aims to provide spaza shops identified through this project with the required banking solutions to run a formal business and fast track skills development with financial literacy training for spaza shop owners so that they can get better at reading a balance sheet, understand income statements and sharpen their knowledge on how to grow a business through social media.

Oscar Siziba, Absa Managing Executive in Pretoria, Limpopo, Mpumalanga says: “Our investment in eSpaza Sum is how Absa is contributing to the growth and formalisation of township businesses and economies in line with our Shared Growth commitment to improve the employability or self-employability prospects of young people and entrepreneurs across the country. This also forms part of our Mandela month celebrations.”

Caption (from left to right)Oscar Siziba, Absa Managing Executive in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Pretoria; Tshepo Seeta, eSpaza Sum Managing Director and founder; Anastasia Mathabathe, one of the Spaza shop owners in Mamelodi benefiting from the project and Tony Ferreira, Operations Director at Big Save celebrate the upliftment of the township economy.

For further information, please contact:

Nobubele Mkwananzi

Communications Manager: Vice President

Group Marketing and Corporate Relations

Tel: 012  364 1141

Cell: 071 350 7703

Email: nobubele.mkwananzi@absa.co.za

 About Absa

Absa Bank Limited (Absa Bank) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Barclays Africa Group Limited, which is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and is one of Africa’s largest financial services groups. Absa offers a range of retail, business, corporate and investment banking and wealth management products and services primarily in South Africa and Namibia.

Barclays Africa is 23.4% owned by Barclays Bank PLC (Barclays). We operate in 12 countries with about 40 thousand permanent employees and we serve close to 12 million customers.

For further information about Barclays Africa, please visit our website www.barclaysafrica.com