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Six finalists chosen for Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur of the Year Award

Six finalists have been selected from a pool of 131 entrepreneurs in Tsogo Sun’s entrepreneurial development programme to compete for the winner’s title in the Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

The Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs programme represents the next logical step in the evolution of Tsogo Sun’s commitment to the development of emerging enterprises. The programme is an extension of the group’s successful Book a Guesthouse programme and now comprises of 98 Book a Guesthouse owners, 23 Sun1 hotel operators, and 10 housekeepers, making it the only entrepreneurial development programme of its kind in the hospitality and tourism industry.

The six finalists will go through a challenging training and selection process before the winner is crowned at the Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs annual conference on 9 October at Southern Sun Pretoria, winning the title, prizes valued at more than R100 000, and the opportunity to serve as an ambassador for Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs for the year.

The finalists are Tracey Naude from Cacey Hotel Management cc operating Sun1 Milnerton and Sun1 Beaufort West in the Western Cape; Lilanie Blignaut from Lilaton Management cc operating Sun1 Hatfield in Gauteng; Jesse Mbewe from JC Cleaning Services operating the housekeeping services for Southern Sun Montecasino in Gauteng; Benita Cyster from Lumley’s Place in the Western Cape; Lizelle Maurice from Park Place Boutique Guesthouse in the Eastern Cape; and Nomsa Mazibuko from Visit Vakasha Guest Lodge in Mpumalanga.

Tsogo Sun this week hosted the finalists at Montecasino for a two-day coaching workshop to prepare them for their role as Entrepreneur of the Year, should they win the award. The winner is selected by a rating system based on a set of criteria measured against a scorecard and the judges from Tsogo Sun include Marcel von Aulock, CEO; Vusi Dlamini, Group Human Resources Director; and Laurelle Fick, Corporate Finance Manager.

Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs is a business benefit and development programme that supports various clusters of entrepreneurs within the value chain of the Tsogo Sun group and within the broader South African tourism industry to develop professionally-operated, compliant, sustainable businesses.

The programme provides qualifying entrepreneurs with business development support and benefits including skills transfer (business development, coaching, mentorship); value added benefits (endorsement, memberships, marketing, publicity); shared services (extranet, call centre, preferential discounts, business support); business tools (risk assessment and recommendations, software systems, equipment); an integrated supply chain (market access, networking opportunities); and recognition (entrepreneur rewards, certification, awards).

“Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs is an important part of the company’s far-reaching Citizenship programme and we wish each one of the finalists the best of luck as they go through the processes necessary for selecting the Entrepreneur of the Year for 2015,” explains Candy Tothill, Tsogo Sun’s General Manager: Corporate Affairs. “This programme was expanded to include more beneficiaries and offer a greater level of service because Tsogo Sun is committed to entrepreneurial development to meet job creation needs in this country. This first group of Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs has embraced all the opportunities they have been offered and are doing justice to our Enterprise and Supplier Development initiatives.”

For more information go to tsogosun.com, follow us on Twitter @TsogoSun, or like us on Facebook/TsogoSun.