Why iKhokha’s new slogan is exactly what South African SMEs need

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A recent SME Confidence Index revealed the current state of mind of South African business owners. According to the report, SME confidence in their businesses growing in 2024 dropped by 5% to the lowest it’s been since the pandemic.

It’s unsurprising that SMEs are unsure of their growth potential this year. Load shedding, water supply interruptions, political uncertainty, escalating crime rates and a stagnating economy are just some of the daily challenges they face.

Despite this, the sector is increasingly determined to rise above adversity.

According to the SME Confidence Index, 62% of SMEs have increased confidence that the private sector will provide avenues for growth in 2024.

iKhokha is one company that is creating a growth platform and tangible support for South African small businesses to build positive business growth despite the tough macro-economic conditions.

Having spent 12 years supporting SMEs with a full payment ecosystem and after surpassing R2 billion in business funding disbursements to SMEs, iKhokha recently launched a new slogan imploring SMEs to Believe in Better. It’s an effort to inject positivity into the SME landscape to further support small businesses.

“We have seen the growth in the SME sector, despite South Africa’s challenges. By encouraging businesses to Believe in Better, we aim to contribute to shaping positive sentiment in the SME sector,” says iKhokha CEO Matt Putman. 

Matt Putman.

iKhokha aims to stimulate small businesses through a series of payment solutions and business management tools. Aside from business funding, iKhokha also offers smart card machines with value added services, digital payment tools and easy-to-use sales analytics software to help SMEs chart a path to success.

SMEs account for approximately 40% of South Africa’s GDP. They also employ around half of the country’s workforce. Their role in South Africa’s economic revival is pivotal, and yet the support initiatives for SMEs from both government and traditional FSPs are limited.

Despite limited support and challenging macro-economic conditions, more South Africans are choosing to build their futures through entrepreneurship. While SMEs experienced a 25% decline during the pandemic, the sector has since recovered. Recent estimates put the SME population in South Africa north of 2.5 million, an all-time high.

The numbers tell a story. South Africans are tenacious. They are not ready to give up on a brighter future and will fight for it if they are given the chance.

iKhokha’s Believe in Better slogan captures this sentiment. It acknowledges SMEs hopes for growth, their tenacious pursuit of prosperity and their dream for a better South Africa. It’s also a statement beyond words from a brand that isn’t just saying the future will be better, but that’s providing a realistic route to get there. 

“We will continue to bridge the gap to offer SMEs the solutions they need to unlock economic upliftment and build a future we can all be proud of as South Africans,” says Putman.