BEDCO to host Expo

BEDCO to host Expo

MASERU – BASOTHO Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO) in collaboration with The Entrepreneurship Network (TEN) will host a 3rd expo at ‘Manthabiseng Convention Centre on the 19th to 23rd November this year.
The aim of the expo is to promote and develop the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.

And the mandate of BEDCO as the government’s parastatal is to establish and develop indigenous Basotho-owned enterprises following the realisation that a weak private sector is a major setback for job creation. BEDCO and TEN have organised Entrepreneurship Expo with an intention to assist Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) to unlock market access, Mzimkhulu Sithetho, BEDCO communications officer said.

Sithetho said their primary role is to expose and showcase entrepreneur’s products and services to investors from locally and across Africa continent to help create new opportunities for investment, partnership and collaborations.
He said the expo was organised to enable network between potential buyers and entrepreneurs and to assist Basotho entrepreneurs to learn from what others are producing.
He said in 2017, they had 100 participants while this year they will be having 200 participants.

“There will be series of activities such as seminars, forums and conferences. There will also be different speakers who will share different views, expertise and topics,’’ Sithetho said.
He said there will be topics identified from different sides of experts to share information with entrepreneurs.
The program at glance include ‘What is your unique selling proposition’ which will be held on 20th and ’Entrepreneurship as a Bedrock of a Nation Pride and National Development’ on 21st November, Sithetho said.

Amongst other guest speakers invited are Selebogo Molefe, the founder of The Hookup Dinner from South Africa who will be part of the speaker for the ‘What’s Your Vibranium Pillar’.
Expo is open for every Mosotho entrepreneur, including Basotho who fall under agricultural products, textiles and people who market their products and services.
The fully sponsored stall bookings have already been closed on the 2nd November.

Sithetho said they had 10 000 people attending their event last year but this year they are aiming to increase the number to 15 000.00.
He said they have tried to make the event even more fascinating than 2017 by inviting new different speakers.
He said there will be more advanced topics to be discussed.

So far, the expo has been playing crucial role in the growth of Basotho’s businesses in a way that from the previous expos, entrepreneurs were able to showcase their products to potential buyers and other entrepreneurs whom they established connections with.
The entrepreneurs who took part in the previous expos were able to get more customers and even had orders from the same event.

Despite the effort and commitment that BEDCO puts to make sure that the expo does not become just an ordinary event, but it strives to grow Basotho’s businesses, there is still a low turnover of people attending and taking part. It is in the best interest of BEDCO that every Mosotho can know and understand the significance of this event.

Sithetho pleaded with Basotho to be engaged in expo events as this can enhance their entrepreneurial skills through interaction with different experts and other entrepreneurs.
He said this can also unlock the market for their products and service and as a result, reduce unemployment rate in Lesotho which is their main target.

Refiloe Mpobole

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