South Africa is regarded as Africa’s largest economy, it enjoys a bulk of the continent’s inward portfolio investments. A recent survey of 15 countries across the world conducted by Softline and Sage AAMEA, ranked South Africa as the second highest country for business confidence among small and medium sized companies.
The survey, called The Sage Business Index, is a measure of confidence of about 11,000 small and medium scaled businesses across North America, Europe, Asia, including South Africa and Brazil- who are members of the BRICS group. A look at the results against an international backdrop shows South Africa scored the second highest index rating of all the countries polled in terms of individual business confidence.
According to Ivan Epstein, CEO (and co-founder) of Softline and Sage AAMEA (Asia, Australia, Middle East and Africa), “Entrepreneurial spirit and business culture is identified by businesses as one of the most important aspects for doing business successfully in South Africa. This endorses my strong belief that South Africa is a fertile environment for successful entrepreneurs and small businesses”.
In 2010, South Africa began efforts to join the BRIC grouping, and the process for its formal admission began in August of that year.South Africa officially became a member nation on December 24, 2010, after being formally invited by the BRIC countries to join the group, thus making the group ‘BRICS’.
The admission of South Africa into the group, among other things, was a recognition of its impressive emerging economy status and its significant influence in African affairs.
Epstein attributes South Africa’s impressive economic outlook to economic and political reforms in Africa that have resulted in an improved business environment and offer an attractive opportunity for South African businesses to diversify and expand across their border.
“ We’ve seen evidence in this research report and others, that small and medium sized business in South Africa require more focused attention from our leaders. The future of the South African economy, and most importantly, the ability to create employment in this country will be dependent the stimulation of more businesses that are sustainable over the long term. Private business and Government have a pivotal role to play in the economic growth and development of small business in South Africa,” Epstein concluded.