In 1967 one gigabyte of hard drive storage space cost US$ 1m. Today it’s around two US cents. Computer processing power has also increased exponentially: it doubles every two years. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to technological progress in the 21st century. There have also been tremendous advances in communication technology; robotics; nanotechnology; genetics and artificial intelligence, among other things. This merging of digital, physical and biological worlds has come to be known as the “fourth industrial revolution”. So far, relatively little attention has been paid to the overwhelming potential of the fourth industrial revolution to catalyse much neededRead More →

Every business person will experience challenges. This is a default setting in life – Challenges will always come. But, what separates the businesses that rise and rise, from those that experience failure after failure? (Caveat: This is not to say that there are businesses that never fail. ALL businesses fail at some point. Some, however, rise from ashes and shine through.) Passion, then, is the key ingredient between throwing in the towel, or getting up to fight the next round. There is a refining moment where every business owner goes through intense heat. This heat can either polish you or finish you completely but itRead More →

Most businesses fail to realize the excessive costs involved in shipping and that may be one reason for their lower profit margins. Higher overheads on shipping make logistics a costly affair for them, hampering the overall efficiency and profitability of the businesses. As a business maker, you might be losing out competitiveness with your peers in the market. So, the first and foremost thing you can do is minimizing the shipping costs of your products with some effective ways, benefitting yourself as well as your customers. Apparently, you can redistribute the costs saved in shipping by offering them some discounts to your customer on theRead More →

There have been some positive steps toward getting more young people, particularly women, involved in studying STEM subjects. In recent years, South Africa has unveiled a number of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes to encourage women to enrol for STEM subjects. For example, black women held the largest share of National Research Foundation (NRF) bursary support in 2016 overall. In the areas of engineering and computer sciences, NRF funding was increased more for women, though men still get the lion’s share of funding in these important subjects. The funders are trying, but because of the leaky  pipeline, among other factors, there aren’t always women to takeRead More →

Rinsie Prinsloo, managing director of Emerge Solutions, has enjoyed a stellar career within the Emerge Group. Starting out as a project manager in Bloemfontein five years ago, her ability to work with clients, problem-solve and harness business relationships has made her a specialist in her field. In this Q&A with African Business Quarterly, Prinsloo relates how Emerge Solutions has garnered such success in providing clients with digital solutions that save both time and money, as well as how she leads by example. ABQ: Can you provide us with background on Emerge Solutions? What are the core services you offer? Prinsloo: Emerge Solutions was started withRead More →

Global Markets When dealing with global markets, foreign debtors and the complexities that arise from doing business abroad, there is one aspect of your company that should always be protected : your bottom line. Exporting to lands far from home can come with a heightened sense of vulnerability for your business. At Credit Guarantee we believe our clients have the future of South Africa’s economic growth in their hands. We provide international trade credit insurance that enables them to TAKE ON new global markets with confidence. Protect your business and get covered today! More →