JOHANNESBURG - A businessman has started a company focusing on niche human capital development solutions as a springboard to venture into entrepreneurship.
Alex Granger, 49, co-founded Twice Blue in 2017 to assist organisations build capacity and reach their human capital development goals.
The international speaker and published author who has conducted speaking engagements in four continents, describes the company as practitioners specialised in developing human talent in the workplace, through training, coaching and strategy facilitation.
A part-time lecturer at GIBS Business School, Granger is completing his PhD in philosophy through Selinus University in Italy.
He says his passion is speaking all over the globe in areas of leadership and high performance.
Granger says together with his two business partners they decided to venture into entrepreneurship because of their keen interest on the sector.
He says they found it difficult as speakers to help businesses scale their operations through speaking. “People were looking for deeper messaging,” he says.
Granger, who lives in South Africa’s economic engine of Johannesburg, says the first few months of starting the business proved difficult, but was quick to add that the company was now functioning like a well oiled machine.
“It was very difficult especially with cash flow, growing the business and making sure that people have confidence in your abilities,” he says.
“But we are now a solid business. Now we are self-sustaining and the future looks good.”
Granger says the company has no specific sector that it operates in, saying they do all the economic sectors, although a bulk of their business come from the financial services industry.
“Our focus is people in the organisation so it doesn’t matter what the industry or sector is.” Twice Blue’s corporate clients, among others, include FNB and Standard, and Nedbank.
When asked about the company name, Granger says they decided to go with a name that would be easy on the tongue and to the market.
“A conversation starter, so to speak. If you look at the name Google, it didn’t mean anything when the company was starting. But now that has name has become synonymous with searching for information online.”
He says they are not in a hurry to expand their footprint across the South African borders as they want to.
“We want to focus on South Africa primarily and build a good reputation and credibility for ourselves. Then we can spread to the SADC region and then the rest of Africa. That’s where our goals are for the medium to long term.”
Granger says the company is well positioned to take advantage of the much-touted Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). “In our business we have realised the importance of Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things and the 4IR,” he says.
“Our business is solid enough. We are an agile business that’s in touch with 4IR.”
He has hailed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s efforts to reignite the economy, saying most corporate citizens are cautiously positive about his interim administration. However, he said many were waiting to see what the outcome of the May 8 general election would be, before committing to bring more investments into the local economy.
Besides keeping abreast with pressing socio-economic issues, the international speaker says he is also passionate about his speaking engagements on the world stages.
“I’ve spoken in 21 countries, four continents. But the majority of my work is in Africa. My main focus going forward is continuing my work in SADC and East Africa.”
Granger says one has to have the right mindset before deciding to venture into the treacherous world of entrepreneurship.
“Everything that you do must start with the right mindset. We must develop focus in what we do, and ensure that we have the right set of core values and goals in our lives,” he argues.
“If you can’t articulate what your business would be like in the next five to 10 years, then you have a problem.”
Alex Granger is also a Judge on the 'Firstwatch Entrepreneurs Challenge' a business pitching competition by Firstwatch Whisky. Contenders are pitching for an investment of R50 000 and mentorship. Those interested can send an SMS, Whatsapp or send a "Please Call Me" to 072 391 9937 or [email protected]