Moshe Ndiki ventures into business, but the road has not been easy
Media personality Moshe Ndiki, known for his acting and presenting skills, has dived into the world of entrepreneurship.
Business Report Online caught up with Ndiki to find out more about his business ventures.
He recently launched a spice range and also owns a television production company.
The bubbly media personality told BRO that his penchant for business originated from seeing his entrepreneur mother run her security and catering companies.
“I always looked up to her, the way she focused on the quality of her deliverables. Just watching her and helping her with emails gave me an understanding of running a business. She was always an inspiration for me. I knew one day I would also have my own business,” he said.
Ndiki’s journey to running businesses started five years ago when he was an unemployed graduate after obtaining a television and media degree.
“I have a BA degree in performing arts, and after completing it I was ready to get discovered, but I was not getting a job in television. I decided to turn my passion into business”.
He opened Moshe’s kitchen, a catering company, which started out as a soup kitchen and settled on producing spices.
“Spices provide such an adventure – just playing around with them, mixing them, you can come up with a different blend,” Ndiki said.
He chose the spice industry because he felt people had little knowledge of the health implications of consuming spices.
“My spices are MSG-free, which means they don’t have flavourings, they don’t have added preservatives. Our shelf life is one year. Some spices tend to be salty, and that means they are not healthy,” he said.
He added that his spices were are also banting friendly. Banting is a weight-loss diet based on limiting eating carbohydrates, especially those of a starchy or sugary nature.
Ndiki said he was involved in the production of the spices from start to finish.
“I’m involved in the way the spice range looks; how I want the spices to taste; what message I want to convey. For example, the chicken spice contains 90% chicken spice, 5% garlic, and 5% oregano,” he said.
Starting the spice business has not been smooth sailing for Ndiki.
“Some of the challenges I encountered include financial constraints, hence it took me five years to open my business. Trying to get the product right, especially since it was something I’d never done before, was also a challenge,” he said.
Another challenge was researching the product and ultimately having it on retailers' shelves.
“You have to learn the meaning of specific barcodes, how to purchase barcodes, how to get your product to be SABS-approved. There are many certificates you have to apply for to get your product to be shelf-worthy,” he said.
Despite the hurdles, Ndiki's hard work finally paid off.
“The reception of the spice range has been amazing. I’ve been getting orders non-stop. I’ve also been receiving good feedback from other businesses and other entrepreneurs.”
Ndiki employs a total of 21 people at his television production and spice business.
“I have a headcount of 16 people working on the spices. On my production business, I employ five.
“I want to tell real South African stories on an international level. I love storytelling, I love being in production,” he said.
“I feel like something is lacking in the television industry in terms of telling our stories. We’re unable to tell them to the fullest extent because of how much we’re allowed to show on TV. I want to show the rawness of the South African story. We always hear about the American dream, but what about the South African dream? What is the South African dream?” Ndiki asked.
He said he would produce films, documentaries and dramas through his production company.
Ndiki advises other aspiring entrepreneurs to have patience and perseverance.
“At some point, you will lose your mind, but you’ll get it back. Don’t worry if things don’t go your way, something is in the process. You are at the right place.
“Restructure, rebrand … as long as you are still alive, there is always a way to make it work.”
BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE