An empirical analysis of a private company’s corporate social investment in SMME development in South Africa

  • E Swanepoel
  • JW Strydom
  • C Nieuwenhuizen


South Africa has a very high unemployment rate, low economic growth and dismal Total (early-stage) Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) preformance. Both government and private businesses are attemptingto address this problem. A private company, the South African Breweries (SAB), as part of their corporate social investment, runs the SAB KickStart Programme to establish and grow entrepreneurial small businesses among young South Africans. The programme applies four interventions: General Enterprising Tendency test; twoweek live-in business management training; funding and mentoring; and a national competition for prize money. Taking into consideration the cost of funding and operating the programme, its eff ectiveness required investigation. The population for the study comprised all the participants of the SAB KickStart Programme, from 2001 to 2006. From an analysis of variance (ANOVA) applied to the turnover and percentage profi t fi gures of respondents, it was deduced that funding and mentoring, after training, add value to the programme. The programme contributes to enterprise sustainability ,as 80 per cent of the respondents were still operating their initial businesses, while a further six percent have started another business – hence, a ‘failure’ rate of only 14 per cent. In conclusion, it can be said that the SAB KickStart Programme adds value, advances entrepreneurship, and can be replicated by other large institutions in South Africa.

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eISSN: 1998-8125
print ISSN: 1561-896X