Africa-Press – Lesotho. The Entrepreneurs Network (TEN) hosted the 5th Entrepreneurship Expo 2021, in an effort to build a commercial ecosystem and rebuild the country’s economy.
The Entrepreneurship Expo started in 2016 and has been held annually with 300 to 500 attendees to daily panel discussions and workshops. This year it saw both young and old entrepreneurs
motivated to show up at Maseru Mall to show case their different products or talents. Speaking at the Expo, TEN Managing Director Steven Monyamane stated that they could not host the 5th
annual entrepreneurship Expo in 2020 due to the Covid -19 pandemic as a lot of activities were restricted by then. He indicated that this year’s theme is
‘Rebuilding the Economy, #ReAha MoruoBocha’- a promise to be productive, monumental, informative and above all, catalyst in truly rebuilding the economy of Lesotho.
“We are the social entity which intends on building ecosystem by identifying
talent, formalize, professionalize, provide access to finance as well as create access to market,” Monyamane enlightened He added that ever since their existence, 16 companies have benefited, 400 individuals attended their
events and trainings and they also have collaborated with the Lesotho Chamber of Commerce and Industries (LCCI). Monyamane noted that the expo is simply not
only to showcase the work but also to celebrate the survival of their enterprises throughout the year. He mentioned that their quest is self-knowledge as entrepreneur, “it was from the year 2017 when Basotho
Enterprise Development Corporations (BEDCO) stepped in by sponsoring up to 200 exhibition stalls for Small, Medium and Macro Enterprises (SMMEs) to showcase
their products throughout the Expo,” he said. Former Ministry of Small Business Development, Corporative and Marketing Principal Secretary (PS) Lerata
Pekane said it is important to buy in Lesotho as the impact becomes immediate, “As you buy an item out there you are making a difference in a number of lives
as the producer is likely a bread winner in an extended family, you simply affect lives of more than one person, is better than buying across the border,”
he said, adding that that would develop the social ecosystem and reduce high unemployment rate. Pekane outlined that the key sectors of this years’ expo are agriculture, technology, tourism and
manufacturing, the purpose being to identify and structure how entrepreneurs, innovators, technocrats, policymakers, cooperates, captains of industry and
businesses in general could unpack and develop sustainable linkages in each sectorial value chain. In an interview with one entrepreneur as Sor Founder Selloane Raleting, she said it was her second time
in an expo, which has been beneficial to her business as last time she acquired new customers and she hopes even now she will get further exposure. Also, GUGA Founder Khotso
Monyamane who designs items like accessories, paintings and the likes said the expo helps him to network with other producers and manufactures, he mentioned that showcasing also attracts a broader market.