The Sunday News
Mthabisi Tshuma, Sunday News Correspondent
SMALL-to-medium businesses run by Zimbabwean women shone brightly after edging their regional peers at the recently held mini-trade fair in South Africa.
A number of women whose businesses are marketed in the Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc), participated in the mini-trade fair in a bid to increase their market growth in the neighbouring country. The businesswomen who fall under a savings and investment group called Umceco Empire which has over 400 members drawn from countries dotted around the globe held the exhibition as part of a raft of measures of facilitating development projects for communities worldwide.
The organisation, a brainchild of Bulawayo born and bred Ms Sukoluhle Ncube who is now based in South Africa, is made up of women mostly from Zimbabwe, South Africa, Botswana, South Africa, United Kingdom, Ireland, United States of America, among other countries.
In an interview last week, Ms Ncube said they had targeted to showcase their goods and services at the Zimbabwe International Trade in Bulawayo which was set for April but was cancelled because of Covid-19. The Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) is an exhibition platform which is seen as a boost to the country’s business sector as it lures hundreds of businesses from around the country and the world at large.
“We recently hosted a mini-trade fair in Bramley in Gauteng as businesswomen who are into farming, livestock production, jewellery and clothing businesses. The event became an integral platform for the individuals to consolidate their market positions and continue to offer a rare opportunity for them to penetrate new markets, benchmark their products with international brands and allow for the exchange of ideas in particular on issues to do with globalisation, new technologies and business linkages,” said Ms Ncube.
She said plans were underway to bring the mini-trade fair to Bulawayo in a bid to boost the business sector.
“Covid-19 affected a lot of businesses in Africa and the world at large and as an organisation which stands at uplifting women and communities we feel the trade fair should be spread to our wing in Zimbabwe. We are planning on hosting it in Bulawayo in the coming months,” said Ms Ncube.