Where have all the Russian entrepreneurs gone?

When I was 17 years old, then a nerdy high school student in Moscow, I created what the Russian government has been desperately trying to engineer — a start-up with some of that Silicon Valley–style magic. It was innovative, tech savvy, ahead of its’ time, cleverly marketed and could be run out of my parents’ apartment, to minimize costs. By the time I graduated from one of Moscow’s elite universities, the company was on its way to making me a millionaire. Being on the right track, you’d expect me to not want anything to change, right? Wrong. The company was also getting big enough to get the wrong kind of attention from officials. So I took no chances.

Trash can be Medicine

I heard the tragic story of Khaerunissa, the three-year-old daughter of a garbage collector who died in 2005 from chronic diarrhea because her father could not afford the medicine to treat her. As a doctor the story inspired me to create a change in the system, that there would not be any more Khaerunissas in Indonesia today.

Change Starts Now

For a nation that once boasted the likes of Sony, Toyota and Mitsubishi as its entrepreneurial heralds, Japan’s entrepreneurial record in the new millennium is surprisingly sparse. Entrepreneurs in Japan have become the exception rather than the norm. There are a range of issues that impede entrepreneurial activity. Common problems faced by aspiring entrepreneurs include the lack of venture capital, labyrinthine government regulations, and the dominance of large companies. Yet for all these factors, it takes two hands to clap – you need both an environment conducive to startups as well as people who aspire to be entrepreneurs. Thankfully, I am one of them.

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My Worst Day: Rejected at the Eleventh Hour

Zuko and Zukile Mabombo, the founders of Khayelitsha Ushers, share their story on how they survived their biggest business disappointment yet. Today the brothers have found a way to make a success out of their business idea – getting back up, after they were knocked down!

Most Worst Day: Rise and Fall of a Millionaire

Raymond Vicani, founder of Raymond Landscaping and Gardening Services, tells the story of how his landscape company rose to success and quickly lost all of it…in the same year. Moral of the story? Choose your partners wisely!

My Worst Day: 18 Gangster Museum

Wandisile Nqeketho shares on the disappointments he’d face as a young entrepreneur looking for funding for his interactive gangster museum

My Worst Day: Communication with Client

Mali Tyafa realized the need to communicate with the client at their level of understanding. Ezibukwayo Interactive, his design company, now adapts effective communication as a key business object. The company is based in Khayelitsha

My Worst Day: Closing a Deal Before Cash

Siyavuya Mlungu is an entrepreneur at Hubspace Khayelitsha – an incubator for entrepreneurs in limited resource communities. His company, Growth Business Consultancy, mentors small business entrepreneurs. He often asks entrepreneurs the question: do you have a customer?


Cutting the costs of Accounting

For the founders of Outsourced CFO, financial planning is at the heart of a thriving business. The company provides businesses the services of Chartered Accountants without the costs of employing them. They find being at The Barn to be a working strategy as they literally operate where their customers are.

In the Tech Doctor’s Room

Medical doctors create The Open Medicine Project. The organisation makes use of technology to help health care workers by providing them with the right information required at the point of care. One of their applications detects the emergency state of the patient based on its’ symptoms. The Bandwidth Barn creates the environment for the doctors to connect with techies.

Africa’s Android Solar Powered Computer

Founder of Capsule Technologies introduces Africa’s android solar powered computer to the market. The innovative project that has the potential to influence the technology space of South Africa, was developed in a small room at TheBarn.

Kick Ass Technology – Obviously!

To Robyn Farah, founder of KAT-O, technology inspires her because it proves that anything is possible. Having started the company only six months ago, she is now one of Cape Town’s most dynamic influences in the tech space. Her interactive marketing brand is based at TheBarn.

It takes Love to Kushn

Greer Valley and her husband Themba Mntambo are the founders of Kushn. In just over two years they have built one of Africa’s most trendy leather goods brands – sourcing materials from Ghana, Ethiopia and South Africa.

Selling Ice in Winter

Co-Founder of Las Paletas (Spanish for ice lollies) talks about how her & her husband have successfully built the now famed sorbet and dairy brand. By adjusting their product offering they were able to convert the seasonal product into a must-have in winter.

The Travelling Brand

The four founders of Vagabond Kitchens employ a dynamic strategy: their brand identity changes as their location changes – being true to their name. In a world where identity and location impact success, these entrepreneurs are flipping the concepts of strategy 101 over.

Butter just got nutty!

Anton van Heerden is the founder of ButtaNutt Tree Nut Spreads. At the Good Food & Wine Show he shares on the dynamics of growing his business. First he must educate his market, then sell his products to his consumers and continue to build strong relationships with both suppliers of tree nuts and the consumers. This simple procedure (after a year of operation) has allowed him to expand his product offering.

How to turn your craving into a sweet success

Susan Labuschagne and her sister are behind the founding of the successful family business: Sweet Temptations Toffees. At the Good Food & Wine Show 2014 she shares how her mother’s business influence has grown her confidence and communication skills to help interact with customers.

Susan’s role in the family business is customer interaction and sales, and encourages other young entrepreneurs to be confident in what they do.

Ethical Food that Actually Tastes Good!

Four principles behind building an organic food brand!

Founders of “Inside & You’re Out” share their strategy behind the success of the brand at the Good Food & Wine Show 2014. The company is a mobile burger concept of seriously gourmet organic burgers – a first on the African continent!

The Department of Coffee: A fresh cup of reality

The Department of Coffee


The founders of Department of Coffee (DOC) explore the challenges of bringing a new entrepreneurial concept to an environment. Is it possible to introduce a market to a new idea, or should one work with ideas known to be successful in specific communities?

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