Some motivation for 2021 from a few of South Africa’s most inspiring businesspeople.

best sa business quotes 2021

South African businesses have been particularly hard hit in 2020. These best SA business quotes should help motivate businesspeople to move forward.


As we look to 2021, we draw inspiration from the wise words of some of South Africa’s most innovative entrepreneurs.


Katlego Maphai, co-founder of Yoco

katlego maphai

Source: Heavy Chef


“To make this venture work, we needed a village. Friends, family, ex-colleagues and bosses were all engaged for support.”


Katlego Maphai believes your network is your net worth. He knows just how important connections and relationships are for a new startup. When Yoco was first conceptualised, Maphai called in favours from everyone he knew to help him and his partners build their company.


Mogau Seshoene, founder of The Lazy Makoti

mogau seshoene

Image source: The Lazy Makoti


“The industry I am in, like most industries, is fluid and ever-changing. I am always ready and looking for the next opportunity.”


Mogau Seshoene remembers how she was never allowed to waste food as a child. This inspired her to create her innovative food platform to help people reimagine their approach to food and leftovers through simple-and-easy-to-follow recipes.


Johanna Mukoki, co-founder and group CEO of Travel with Flair

Johanna Mukoki

Image source: SME South Africa


“It’s important (to be expert in your industry), especially when you’re the only woman there. I had to know my company’s ins and outs, about statistics out there… it’s so that I can be taken seriously… People will then realise that every time you open your mouth, you’re going to give valuable input.”


Johanna Mukoki started her travel management company, Travel with Flair, in 1996 after a few years as an accountant. She has won several awards, including the Businesswomen’s Association of South Africa’s 37th annual Businesswomen of the Year Award: Entrepreneur Category.


Sizwe Nzima, founder of Iyeza Health

sizwe nzima

Image source: Men’s Health


“In my experience, in Africa there is space for innovation. And you don’t have to look far, especially when you are at a disadvantage. Look around you. You might be experiencing a problem that is a need in the community.”


Iyeza Health grew from Sizwe Nzima’s medicine courier business, Iyeza Express. In addition to delivering medicine to more than 1,000 people in Khayelitsha, Iyeza Health aims to strengthen the public health system for residents through better accessibility.


Michael Jordaan, founder of Montegray Capital and co-founder of Bank Zero

michael jordaan

Image source: Tech Central


“Businesses that are spoilt with too much capital make the wrong decisions…Constraints are the most wonderful things in business, because constraints allow you to be innovative and come up with different solutions.”


Michael Jordaan was the CEO of FNB for 10 years before he left to start Montegray Capital, a Stellenbosch-based investment company, in January 2014. In 2018, Michael launched Bank Zero, South Africa’s first app-driven bank, with co-founder Yatin Narsai.


Alex Fourie, founder of weFix (formerly iFix)

Alex Fourie

Image source: WeeTracker


“Focus on making [your product or service] awesome. I see a lot of guys go into business with a ‘how can I make money’ approach. But if you go in there saying ‘how can I make something awesome’, the money will follow.”


As a student, Alex Fourie started repairing iPods from his dormitory and, due to the demand for his services, started iFix. Today, iFix has been rebranded to weFix. It repairs both Apple and Samsung devices in its 11 branches around the country.


Rapelang Rabana, founder and CEO of Rekindle Learning

rapelang rabana

Image source: Rapelang Rebana Page (Facebook)


“Our society teaches us to spend a lot of time looking out there for success, but the ability to drive yourself to your full potential starts internally with personal mastery.”


Rapelang Rabana is a technology entrepreneur, who founded her first company shortly after graduating from university. She was included in the Forbes Africa 30 under 30: Africa’s Best Young Entrepreneurs and 20 Young Power Women In Africa lists in 2013. She was featured on the cover of Forbes Africa before she was 30.


Justin Stanford, co-founder of 4Di Group and Silicon Cape Initiative

justin stanford

Image source: The Flip Africa


“At the beginning you need to get creative. Many start-ups struggle because they look and act like a small business. To be big you need to think (and act) big.”


Justin Stanford dropped out of high school to pursue his dream of becoming an internet entrepreneur. He launched a pan-African internet software company from a garage. He has gone on to become the founder, MD, advisor and investor for a variety of companies in the global technology sector.



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