Top chef Khanyi hosts banquet to celebrate, grow black business

Khanyi Mbambo during the business networking at White Boxx. | KHAYA NGWENYA/ Independent Newspapers

Khanyi Mbambo during the business networking at White Boxx. | KHAYA NGWENYA/ Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 5, 2024


Durban — On an evening to celebrate the growth of black-owned enterprises and women-owned entrepreneurs, local chef Khanyi Mbambo held a dinner banquet. Her goal was to assist black businesses to grow.

The K’s Exclusive Luncheon event took place on Saturday at the White Boxx in Durban.

Born and raised in uMlazi, Mbambo who also owns a catering business, said that through her work with different clients and business people, she’s identified a gap between those who have made it at the top of business and those who are starting.

Mbambo said: “To those who have made it and succeeded, they aid and mentor those at entry level on how to reach the top. I also aid small businesses by providing them a platform to sell their products and through that, they increase their number of clients.”

Mbambo added that she also hosts such events because it helps expose her own business and increase clients too.

“My love for cooking started when I was 15 years old. Back home, my mom and late aunt were involved in catering. From that moment, I ended up pursuing a culinary career and studied at The International Hotel School, where I did hotel management and then specialised in being a chef,” she said.

Mbambo added that it has not been easy and she told herself to never give up.

Mbambo thanked her mother for supporting her.

LM Unleash owner Lindo Mhkize said that her aim was to showcase their products during the luncheon.

Mkhize said: “What inspired me to start this business was to create a niche market but also knowing that perfumes are expensive for most people. So with that, it was a question of how we make the same quality perfumes more affordable and accessible.”

Mkhize said her business started in 2019 with a face cover that aids and prevents make-up stains and it has progressed to 50 other products. Mhkize added that the business is based in Westville but they do courier all over the country.

Mkhize said that she sourced her products from various locations in the country, and then they were manufactured locally.

“It is very rare to find black females making home diffusers, candles and perfumes. There are five individuals who work with me – all of whom are black women. We are looking to grow and expand so that we can create employment opportunities,” she said.

Award-winning gospel singer and songwriter Ntokozo Mbambo was a guest speaker at the event. The uMlazi-born musician, producer and businesswoman shared her musical journey and her thoughts.

Ntokozo said: “At the age of 13, I recorded my first song and it was the first time I was involved in a recording. At 15, I was privileged to join the biggest gospel group in South Africa, Joyous Celebration, and at 17 I released my debut album while still in high school. It was called Bambelela (Hold on).”

Ntokozo said she had been in the music industry for more than 25 years and it had allowed her to travel the world and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ to places like the UK and US.

Ntokozo said she used the platform and experiences from her time at Joyous Celebration to expand and create her own brand. Ntokozo said she was grateful for all the awards she has received but they did not define her.

“Awards do not define who I am, but they are an acknowledgement of the work that I do.”

“These are the kind of events that help empower us – especially as black people. This will help try to improve the living conditions of the next generation. It is platforms like these that help spread information and enlighten us. I believe when we gather like this, we can help solve issues,” she said.

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