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Cape Town - Twelve entrepreneurs are ready to take their businesses to new heights after recently graduating from The Hope Factory’s Business Mentorship Programme.

The group graduated in Johannesburg last week to form part of last year’s class for The Hope Factory’s Business Mentorship Programme, a section of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.

The Hope Factory said it based its methodology on a future where entrepreneurs can thrive for everyone’s benefit.

Programme manager Puseletso Modimogale said it was a privilege to be involved in the development of entrepreneurs and could not only see results in their business but also in their personal and leadership development.

“We are proud to be building the SMME [small, medium and micro-sized enterprises] leaders of tomorrow, and they continue to inspire us.”

Modimogale added that graduation day was a celebration of the success the entrepreneurs had achieved.

She said it was important to acknowledge how far each has come in their entrepreneurial journey.

Graduate Chule Gobodo of Brainbow Conscious Creatives said: “Thank you so much for everything you at The Hope Factory do for us.

"We are committed to being successful so that others after us will have the same opportunity.”

Modimogale said the Hope Factory Enterprise and Supplier Development Programme covered three main areas of leadership, business skills and financial excellence and the core focus is mentorship.

“Solid, holistic and expert mentoring is absolutely essential in the growth and development of entrepreneurs and their businesses.

"The Hope Factory believes that it is through this transfer of wisdom, skills and knowledge that mentoring can make a fundamental difference in the growth and sustainability of SMMEs.”

Edward Mathekga of Computer Cortez, another graduate, said it would be difficult for entrepreneurs to succeed without mentoring.

Mathekga said: “The workshops were also excellent and practical, it feels great to be in control of my business.”

Modimogale said that the programme had been sponsored through enterprise and supplier development contributions which came from the private sector.

She said it not only helped to develop entrepreneurs but created opportunities for corporates to play a role in developing small businesses.