Ecommerce.co.za

Fast capital can turn SA's SME challenges into opportunities

In the vibrant tapestry of South African entrepreneurship, small businesses stand as beacons of innovation and resilience. As we have ushered in a new year, these enterprises look forward to a landscape that will continue to be marked by both challenges and opportunities, powered by the enduring spirit of South African tenacity and the support of trailblazing financial solutions. South Africa defies a number of its problems through our dynamic fintech industry.

2023 was a year of contrasts for South African small businesses. The community entered the year with cautious optimism, only to face the compounded challenges of an ongoing energy crisis, global geopolitical tensions, and a cost-of-living squeeze. The adversities, however, only served to underline the remarkable resilience of these enterprises. Many adapted by honing their operational efficiencies and investing in alternative energy solutions, demonstrating a high 'adversity quotient' that turned obstacles into stepping stones for innovation and growth.

Yet, the journey was far from smooth. Access to funding remained a significant hurdle, with traditional banking institutions often hesitant to lend to new ventures, citing risk concerns. This, coupled with infrastructural woes like load shedding and skills shortages due to a brain drain, painted a challenging picture for aspiring entrepreneurs.

In this context, the need for a swift, reliable, and accessible funding solution became more evident than ever. Zapper, a South African tech company, stepped in to bridge this gap with its Quick Capital service. Designed specifically for merchants within the Zapper ecosystem, Quick Capital offers an innovative approach to financing, where businesses can leverage their transaction volumes to not only access funds quickly but also potentially reduce their premium to zero, turning a cash advance into a growth-enabling instrument without the financial burden typically associated with traditional lending.

The mechanics of Quick Capital are simple yet impactful. Eligible merchants can apply directly through their Zapper Merchant Portal, with funds made available within 48 hours. Repayment is seamlessly integrated into daily transactions, allowing businesses to repay as they trade. This model not only eases the financial strain on small businesses but also incentivises increased transaction volumes through Zapper, creating a virtuous cycle of growth and customer engagement.

Mike Bryer, CEO of Zapper, reflects on the impact of Quick Capital, stating, "At Zapper, we're not just about transactions; we're about fuelling growth and enabling dreams. Quick Capital is more than a funding solution; it's a testament to our commitment to South African entrepreneurs, offering them a lifeline in challenging times and a launchpad for their aspirations."

An example of Quick Capital's success is the story of Shaun Capes, who transformed his coffee shop business, Boston Board Room, into a growing chain. By strategically driving Zapper transactions, he not only accessed the funding he needed to expand but also reduced his premium to zero, effectively enjoying the benefits of 'free' access to capital. This savvy use of Quick Capital not only fuelled his expansion but also reinforced the loyalty of his customer base, eager to support his journey.

Reflecting on his experience, Shaun Capes shares, "When we started Boston Board Room had just one coffee shop and one machine. I didn't have access to funding. But Quick Capital allowed us to open two more, and we paid it off quickly. We applied, and the following day we had Zapper cash available to us. We went to our supplier who was selling refurbished machines, and opened two new outlets."

He adds, "As we started trading more, the payment was coming off each day, and so you didn’t really feel it, plus there's an incentive too which means the more people use Zapper, the less you have to pay back. It puts you in a position where you want to do better because you don't want to pay interest, and we actually paid none because the funding created scale and more customers drove down that interest to zero. In 2023, we didn't just survive; we thrived."

As South African small businesses continue to chart their paths through a landscape of challenges and opportunities, solutions like Zapper's Quick Capital stand as pillars of support, transforming funding from a barrier into a catalyst for growth and innovation.

For more information on Quick Capital and how Zapper is empowering South African businesses, follow this link: https://www.zapper.com/quick-capital/

Useful resources:
JournalismWeb
JournalismWeb is the new home of mobile Journalism in Africa. We were originally known as MediaWeb, a 23-year-old journalism hub in South Africa started by three journalists.
Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Facebook
Share via Email
©2024 SURREAL. All rights reserved.
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn Join us on Facebook