By: Tebogo Mokwena
Starting a business in a township requires a certain degree of trust from community members. A businesswoman and her husband from Saulsville near Attridgeville opened a retail business in the area, and after gaining the community’s trust, they started a butchery and shisanyama. Dimakatso Netshitungulu’s spaza shop, BeeDee Grocery, had its humble beginnings on the streets of Saulsville where she started selling snacks, cigarettes and sweets. The couple started the business after Netshitungulu spent four years searching for a job.
She sold her goods on the streets for a year and reinvested the money into the business until they were able to build a structure a year later. Netshitungulu noted that it took a lot of patience to gain the community’s trust. She also had to contend with competing with a tuck shop owned by a foreign national that was situated opposite her shop as well as beating their prices. This was compounded by the fact that prices were rising for her stock, and because she did not purchase in bulk, she had to spend more money on the stock. However, it was thanks to the support of the community, which noted her dedication and consistency, that led to the business’ steady growth.
Netshitungulu then decided that it would be a good business move to open a butchery and shisanyama. This was because residents had to travel long distances to buy quality meat. The butchery, named BeeDee Lifestyle Corner, is situated next to the spaza shop and opened early in May. It serves the community with red meat, boerewors, and poultry products like chicken and chicken livers.
They also have a braaing facility where customers can braai their meat and enjoy it with a serving of chakalaka and spices. The meat is sourced from Marabastad. She was now focusing on growing the BeeDee brand and sustaining the growth of both businesses. “Once we reach a satisfactory level of growth, we will be looking to open other branches around Tshwane for both businesses,” she said. “We are also looking to create employment.”