The Rare Hustle Showcase was a two-day event to celebrate the achievements of the J&B Hive’s current members, and open the organisation’s doors to new entrepreneurs.

The first night was a social gathering, and an opportunity for members to showcase their business to potential investors, partners and clients. @hivejoburg served up the charm and brought out the fine china for an audience which included representatives from J&B, Diageo and other hustlers.

After an opening address by our Director, Sibongile Musundwa@ASAPSHEMBE took the stage with an iconic, culturally inspired performance. Afterwards, the guests had the rest of the night to enjoy each others’ company; and some good music courtesy of His and Hers Jams.

[GIF from Awkward Black Girl via giphy.com]

Night two had all the charm of the first night; but featured some panel discussions and access for members of the general public.

We have arrived.

The talks were a platform to profile more of our Rare Hustlers, and discuss their journey as J&B Hive members. Also, there was free food…

That’s right.

The first talk featured Gugu Kheswa from Hello Africa Travel; Radile Mokone of Yellow TV; and Itumeleng Montso, representing Montso Solutions. Our savvy panel introduced their businesses; then proceeded to share some thoughts on what has proven important to their hustle as a whole.

“i-Easy lento bafethu…”

Hello Africa Travel is a company that tailors unique travel plans to suit people’s diverse ways of travelling. For any voyage or vacation – you can trust Hello Africa to find a solution for you. According to Gugu, access to the market is one the biggest challenges she, and many South African entrepreneurs face.

“Before we can improve, our businesses must be allowed to become players in their respective industries.” – Gugu Kheswa

This could be us…[Image from Hello Africa Travel]

Yellow TV has found a clever way to play in an untapped, booming market. As a media platform, they create competitions, games and content that keeps consumers engaged in cabs such as Taxify and Uber.

Radile says his core strength is building relationships, which defines many of the connections Yellow TV forms between consumers, brands and creatives.

Lastly, Itumeleng calls Montso Solutions, “A virtual reality company that creates memories in 3D”. He believes the most important thing required to thrive in today’s game is preparation.

Before taking any step, it’s important to do the right amount of research and development, ensuring that you are always a step ahead of where you are.

Haw-right…

Together, the panel engaged the audience and had the following gems to share:

  • Always Deliver. No excuses.
  • Learn from your 9-5, even if you hate it.
  • Manage your cash flow – it’s not your money, it belongs to your business.
  • Always pay people their worth, be honest when it comes to payments.
  • Be conscious of your growth and scale accordingly.
  • Always build relationships and manage your network.

 

After that, it was time for the second panel of the night.

“If this was Destiny’s Child - I’d be Beyonce.”

Since multimedia content is such an important part of South Africa’s creative industry – our second talk explored the unique perspectives of businesses within this field. The panel featured Tshireletso Moloi (Tee), founder of I Am Multeemedia; Siyabonga Mkholo, Managing Director of Outre; and Kearatwa Sedidi (KK), Chief Animator at Dipopaai.

You may be familiar with some of Dipopaai’s productions. Their studio, Phaa! Toonz, produces animated series such as Kronikles of Hip Hop – and their latest offering, Survival Island.

KK says that because it’s such a small market, the South African animation industry is very vulnerable to exploitation. Beyond creating quality content, a large part of their business is ensuring they are legally protected, and managing everything else behind the scenes.

A small price to pay for KK, who chose entrepreneurship because he wanted to spend more time with his son – something he does better when he’s working from home.

On the other hand, Tshireletso approached a more prevalent industry. Her business helps companies and freelancers connect in the execution of content, strategy and multimedia solutions.

Inspired by the difficulties she faced as a freelancer, Tee wanted to start something that would improve working relationships for them. Entrepreneurship seemed viable for her since she’s a ‘night owl’ (a person who is habitually active or wakeful at night) – and needed the flexibility of time that comes with running your own business.

Something she reminded us, comes with a lot of responsibility.

“Gurrrl, she said the ‘R’ word…”

Speaking of responsibility – Siya, the only member of the panel without a cool nickname; had some points to share about becoming a member of the J&B Hive. After starting out as an intern, the young filmmaker shifted his focus towards his own production company.

Although he agrees that it is difficult to find good paying jobs in the beginning; Siya says the work he produced during this period helped him build his reputation and portfolio – leading to better opportunities. The key is picking the right jobs – something he has mastered, as he says getting to plan his own day is the biggest perk of entrepreneurship.

After all, he hopes to retire in 5 years with the freedom to work when he wants.

Siya discussing his future plans.

Finally, we had made it to the last panel discussion of the night.

After hearing talks of business and the J&B Hive; it was time to discuss how entrepreneurship could be used to change the world. The last 3 speakers have businesses that aim to make a positive change to the planet and the people who live in it.

Fighting The Good Fight.

Lebohang Likhojane represents SmartSentials, an online shopping platform that aims to make buying groceries better for students. Sampa Nakamba, founded environmentally-friendly clothing company Naute Couture – while Lebo Ntimane (Naxion) runs artist management and development company; Nokturnvl Music.;

Lebohang defines ‘conscious consumerism’ as being aware of the social and environmental impacts of the products we consume. He says the public’s growing interest in the production processes behind their buying habits; is one of the reasons ventures such as SmartSentials exist.

Sampa echoes this sentiment, pointing towards the environmental strain of the global fashion industry as one of the problems challenged by Naute Couture.

A modern Superwomxn.

Countless tonnes of unwanted clothes end up in landfills, contributing to land pollution and the destruction of natural habitats. Her company aims to alleviate the environmental pressure of these processes, by expanding the lifecycle of clothing.

She does this by restyling existing pieces, or using recycled material to create completely new clothing items.

[image from greyishgreen.com]

Once they’re all styled up and looking like superstars, they might end up catching the attention of Nokturnvl Agency.

(Caption this)

With so many independent artists lacking the right management; Naxxion uses his project management skills to help them come up through the levels of their careers.

Having worked with artists such as Asap Shembe, Emamkay and Moonchild Sanelly – Naxion says he looks for authenticity in the people he partners with. Most of the job is in finding the right team and learning to trust them. Because you can’t do everything yourself.

And just like that, the beautiful night had come to an end. A single article could never capture everything that transpired at the #RareHustle events – but you can stay hugging @hivejoburg for more steps towards your goal of becoming your own boss.

If you’re an entrepreneur, this article has given you a glimpse into the world of a J&B Hive Rare Hustler. You can stay ready for more gems, and our next application process.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Prepare a Proof of Concept. This just means something to show us that you have already started with your business. (i.e) Proof that your idea is feasible.
  • Prepare a business plan. This will let you truly see your business in a way that thinking/ talking about it won’t.
  • The J&B Hive is always connecting and growing its network. So even if you don’t become a member, there are always opportunities for collaboration.
 
Images taken by @dayphotolife

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