In this interview we find out more about Velly Bosega (Internet entrepreneur and founder of Startwise), his business journey and why he believes South Africa should support small business.
Startwise was conceptualised in 2021 after identifying the need for expert guidance for SMEs in South Africa. In order to achieve this, Velly harnesses the power of knowledge sharing and business networking, especially, through cutting-edge technology.
Startwise recruits mentors across all fields and industries. These mentors, who have over 10-years experience in their respective fields, have worked with well-known brands and have proven to be successful in their roles. The platform instantly connects mentors and mentees to give them the advice needed to develop and grow their businesses.
Why did you start your business?
There are many reasons I started my own business. The most prominent is that I am very people-focused. I wanted to build something that would outlive me and truly impact fellow SME owners, entrepreneurs, employees, and other stakeholders.
What do you love the most about running your business?
What I love most is the entrepreneurial freedom – knowing that I am the master of my destiny, and I can enjoy the rewards of my hard work.
What is one of the biggest lessons you have learnt on your business journey?
As an entrepreneur, it is important to be hungry for knowledge. You won’t always have all the answers but you can learn from your employees, clients, mentors, books and most importantly, mistakes.
Why do you do what you do and what do you focus on to help you persevere?
I think the “Why” is something that constantly changes as your life changes. At this stage my “Why” is that I would like to build something that can change the world and my community. I want to help other small businesses with the challenges that I faced when starting my first business. This is why SME South Africa and Startwise were created. These companies address specific challenges I faced when starting Adclick Africa.
My faith and my family are key factors in keeping me grounded and helping me persevere through the tough times.
Why should South Africa support small businesses now and beyond?
Small businesses are the future of the country. A study done by The Small Business Institute states that over 98% of economic transformation and job creation comes from small businesses. With growth in the small business sector, South Africa can become a thriving entrepreneurial nation.