Twenty-six-year-old Katlego Mthombeni may be studying, but that has not stopped him from launching two businesses already. Mthombeni latest venture is Kat Da Cleaner Group, which he started in August last year, after realising there were not many locally produced cleaning products in the West Rand.
Mthombeni, who is from Kagiso, told Vutivi News that Kat Da Cleaner was a 100% black youth-owned company specialising in household, commercial and industrial cleaning detergents and cleaning services. “We also provide upholstery cleaning, which is performed with high-quality equipment and products that remove stains on carpets, mattresses, couches, car seats and other upholstery products,” he said. The company also provides cleaning equipment and manufactures tissues.
“We have identified an opportunity to introduce new innovative products to the industry… products that will stand out in that they are produced by proudly South African youth,” he said. Mthombeni obtained an IT qualification at iCOLLEGE and is currently studying Business Management at Oxbridge Academy. Before he ventured into the cleaning sector, he started Imvuselelo Chicken Enterprise with Kat Da Cleaner’s Chief Operational Officer, Lindiwe Molebatsi. “We manufacture pine gel, dishwashing liquid, tile, toilet and all-purpose cleaners and degreasers. Kat Da Cleaner provides convenient, safe, secure and cost-effective products as well as business services,” Mthombeni said.
He told Vutivi News there were a number of reasons why his company was on the road to success. “What separates our business from others like ours is that we communicate with our clients before and after the job has been done or the product has been sold. We also offer them advice on our services and products, and we provide free cleaning services to old-age homes,” Mthombeni explained. However, running a cleaning service was not all plain sailing.
“Getting more clients and getting our products to have a wider market range is a huge challenge,” he said. “It is also difficult to get more clients when you are competing with other companies in the same sector that offer the same cleaning services.” But the businessman said social media had served as a great tool in overcoming this obstacle. One day Mthombeni hopes to manufacture his products in large quantities. “The fact that I want my business to be known and trusted drives me to wake up every morning. I want to see my business serving more people than it does at the moment,” he said
“I am very passionate about developing and improving my community. I care about the youth of this country and I hope that my entrepreneurial spirit will inspire youth to do the same.”