Wild Coast Sun Resort is helping drive development of the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMME) sector in and around Port Edward, empowering locals with equipment and training to grow into respected suppliers.
Siphokazi Nogojela of Poshy A Printing and Branding, and Pamela Gumede of GPN Amangunie Trading Company are beneficiaries of Wild Coast Sun’s Enterprise and Supplier Development Funding, aimed at growing sustainable local businesses and creating shared economic growth in the region.
Self-taught graphic designer Nogojela may be just 28-years-old, but she is determined to build a business which not only offers her a living, but also creates employment for others. She started her printing and branding business in 2016 without any machinery or business experience. In September last year, she started working with Wild Coast Sun, who assisted by providing her with an industrial printing machine, and in-house graphic design training. She now employs five staff members between her offices at Msizazwe and Wild Coast Sun.
“I am challenged daily to come up with creative ideas for signage and posters,” Nogojela said. “Having my own printing machine means we can handle all jobs in-house and our customer base has grown to include schools and more businesses.”
Poshy A handles all artwork, designs and printing of digital posters for the Resort. “All vinyl signage printing is now done in-house which means quicker turnaround time as well as the benefit of being able to customise as much as we can,” said Bandile Mdliva, SED & Community Liaison Manager at Wild Coast Sun.
In 2018, Gumede was a Wild Coast Sun seamstress who spent her days altering uniforms and mending linen, while harbouring a lifelong dream of owning her own sewing business. After matriculating, she studied fashion design in the Durban Lindiwe Kuzwayo Academy of Fashion and worked for various designers before landing back in her hometown of Port Edward.
“In 2021, I submitted a business plan to Wild Coast Sun and they have been my ticket to achieving my dreams. I cannot thank them enough for providing me with four sewing machines and rent-free office space – I am now my own boss and run my own sewing business, employing four seamstresses,” Gumede said.
The business is currently busy with an order for 700 sheets and 1 700 pillows. “I grew up in an entrepreneurial household, my mother is my role model and I learnt how to be a strong woman because of her. I started needlework in school, and by the age of 18, was forced to sew my own clothes because shop-bought clothing did not fit my very slim frame.”
“I have to give credit to Wild Coast Sun – they always try their best for our community. As they equip small businesses, we can hire locals in the community – I dream of having an empire one day which provides clothing to the masses.”
Since an SMME conference was hosted at the Resort last year, Sun International has put its money where its mouth is, and has taken a number of small suppliers under their wing to both provide services and receive training and support from the hospitality group. Wild Coast Sun has brought about 15 new SMMEs on board in the past 18 months.
“We want to facilitate the development and sustainability of SMME’s so as to contribute to job creation, local economic development and transformation in the area,” said Mdliva.