Paycorp would like to congratulate this year’s Entrepreneur of the Year winners

entrepreneur-packaging-a-productPaycorp has always been a supporter of entrepreneurship, especially when small business owners are just starting out. We believe that by supporting business minds we invest in our country’s future. Entrepreneurship encourages innovation, stimulates the economy and opens up market opportunities. From time to time, these determined business minds deserve some recognition. On the 1st of September this year’s Entrepreneur of the Year award winners were announced and we would just like to take this opportunity to continue shining a light on their well-deserved honours.

Business Partners Ltd has been honouring entrepreneurs for 27 years

They’re a financing company aimed at financing SMEs and they’ve been doing it for 30 years. In 1989 they introduced the Entrepreneur of the Year to give recognition to entrepreneurs who have excelled and in 2010 they partnered with Sanlam as sponsors in order to grow the competition. But it’s more than just a competition, the Entrepreneur of the Year awards is a way to encourage and develop entrepreneurial pursuits across the nation. The thinking is that by rewarding and promoting excellent entrepreneurship as a country, we can multiply it. Besides the exposure and networking capital that the awards provide, the finalists stand to win prizes to the value of R2million, R425 000 of which is cash.

Agricon’s Johan Eksteen took home the top prize this year

Johan Eksteen is a two-time finalist and owner of Agricon, an internationally trading producer of environmentally-friendly pelleting solutions for the agricultural and industrial sectors. Pelletising is basically processing materials into smaller dry pieces, called pellets, which are then used for a variety of purposes including animal feed, packaging and recycling. Agricon provides machinery and equipment that allows various businesses to be able to produce whatever pellets they need safely and efficiently. After being shortlisted as a finalist but not winning in 2014, Agricon improved their business processes and took home the top prize at this year’s awards.

In addition to the honour of Entrepreneur of the Year, there are other categories where finalists stand a chance to win. This year’s category winners were Vanessa Jacobs of Sow Delicious for Emerging Business Entrepreneur of the Year; Meisie Nkosi of Bella Boni Guest House for Small Business Entrepreneur of the Year; Carl Pretorius of Just Trees for Medium Business Entrepreneur of the Year; Michael Roberts of Khonology for Job Creator of the Year; and Stacey Brewer and Ryan Harrison of SPARK Schools for Innovator of the Year.

Paycorp was founded on unquenchable entrepreneurial spirit

Paycorp is a company built on the core principles of excellent entrepreneurship; innovation, risk-taking, dedication and an immutable dream are what built us up from the ground. In these trailblazing business minds we see a bit of our own fearless leader, Steve Kark. He too had humble beginnings as a businessman, but because he shared the fire that these entrepreneurs have been honoured for, he also quickly earned his recognition. In 2001 Steven won the South African Jewish Entrepreneur of the Year Award and in 2003 he took home the top prize at the South African Non-Listed Company Awards (jointly sponsored by Business Day, Wits Business School, Proudly South African and KPMG) for ATM Solutions. There have been plenty of other accolades along the way, but we all know that it’s those first few acknowledgements and initial plaudits that tend to stay with us the most.

So on behalf of Steven and the rest of Paycorp, we extend congratulations to these talented entrepreneurs and we’re willing to bet that this won’t be the last time we hear from you.