South Africa's recent establishment of a dedicated Ministry of Small Business Development reflects a growing national and global recognition that entrepreneurs and small enterprises are powerful drivers of economic growth and job creation.
To achieve its goals of economic growth and reduced poverty and inequality, South Africa's National Development Plan needs broad buy-in from across society. Only in Utopia could a plan of this scope achieve instant, unqualified assent from all quarters, writes Simon Barber.
With the theme "Africa Rising", the recent International Women's Forum South Africa brought together more than 200 women from business, government and civil society to examine women's role in the continent's economy and find ways to include them in the mainstream.
The Branson Centre in Joburg has been training and helping entrepreneurs in Gauteng for nearly a decade. This year, with funding from American charity Humanity United, it accepted its first batch of businesspeople from Liberia into the foundation course. It has opened the way to expanding the centre's reach.
More light will be shone on the digital landscape at the Fak'ugesi: Digital Africa Festival. Technology will play a key role in Africa's Century – widely held to be dawning – but for Africa to succeed in the digital space, it needs to become a leader and an innovator, rather than simply a consumer.
Melissa Jane Cook