After being retrenched from her former employment Gugulethu Masango (35) from Mamelodi Pretoria, started her own financial institution, Ukhozi finance and Investments operating in Mamelodi West. The company started on 2nd February 2016 which makes it three years now since it’s inception. As like any other business the company was started in order to make profit, and help resolve issues taking place in society.
“One of the problems that we have seen is that financial inclusion is lacking in South Africa, the banking system is not convenient for our local people especially the township based people that’s why I decided to open a financial facility that’s going to be accessible to those type of individuals” said Gugulethu.
New established businesses have challenges adjusting and attracting their target market, Ukhozi Finance and Investments faced a similar challenge. The business had a challenge in attracting customers to come and utilise their services, because of the business’s location they managed to overcome their challenge. The company has now blossomed and they are now opening a new branch in Mamelodi East and now they are faced with a challenge of marketing costs.
“I think the cost of marketing is just so high every time a business owner is trying to market the business it’s not a nice phase to go through, but it’s one that you can’t overlook” Gugulethu clarified.
The business offers services such as cash loans, and at the new office in Mamelodi East they now decided to add stokvel benefits and burial benefits to their services offered. Gugu does not have any partners and she is the only shareholder in her business and she intends to keep it that way for as long as she can. At the moment Ukhozi Finance and Investment has four full time employees, and their main office is located at No 18 Mokoena Street Mamelodi West.
Gugu added that they want to bring change in the financial industry by enabling every South African to be included in the financial sector, without discriminating against a certain class of people.
“We want everybody that earns some form of income to be able to access whatever financial products and services they need, it’s not good enough to just want to assist people who earn a certain amount of income or those who live in a certain type of area, we want everybody to be equally included in the financial sector” Gugu added.
By: AMOGELANG RAMOTSHO