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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - BLACK UMBRELLAS


WHAT IS BLACK UMBRELLAS?

Black Umbrellas is an incubation, mentorship and development programme to facilitate the development and growth of the SMME market.



HOW DOES BLACK UMBRELLAS ASSIST?

We provides members with a working environment and the support services to enable them to thrive. Benefits include office space with a professional receptionist, computers, communications (internet and telephone), motor vehicles with drivers, a compulsory reliable bookkeeping service and a structured mentorship programme. All this is made available for a nominal monthly fee, allowing entrepreneurs the space to focus on their core business, with the assurance that support is on hand and the overheads are covered. An added benefit is that members participate in a growing network of businesses in which they are able to share resources and be motivated by one another’s success.


HOW LONG HAS THE PROGRAMME BEEN OPERATIONAL?

Black Umbrellas was established in January 2005 to pilot a new design model for the support of Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) facing the traditional challenges of small business operation. The rebranding to Black Umbrellas took place in September 2009.


WHY ONLY 100% BLACK-OWNED SMMES?

According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) Report 2009, “relative to population size, Indians/Asians are more than three times, and whites more than twice as likely, compared to Africans, to be involved in early stage entrepreneurial activity. This can, to a large extent, be attributed to the legacy of Apartheid policies and their impact on:

  • Poor levels of education and skills development;
  • Inadequate business infrastructure development and limited markets.
  • Restrictions on owning property which reduced assets available for loans;
  • Fewer entrepreneurial role models

 

 

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