On a Friday evening in December we went to listen to an opera at the Roodepoort, Theatre. The main draw card was South Africa’s top tenor Stephan Louw. If you’re not interested in opera don’t worry because the fascinating part of this opera was the business model.
When I was growing up and we went fishing for snoek off my father’s ski boat at Cape Point we became excited when we were the first to discover the giant shoals of Snoek. When the shoals of snoek were concentrated as they moved into False Bay, the fishing was good. Within a few hours you could catch enough to fill the boat’s fish hold and go home early to market.
In the following days, the commercial fishermen out of Kalk Bay and Simon’s Town and the ski boat fraternity would hear that there was snoek off Cape Point. A whole flotilla of fishing boats would be fishing for the snoek shoals. Sometimes it was chaotic. If you were into a shoal of snoek, other boats would drift next to you throwing out the lines and entangling them in yours. There was much cursing and cussing. Within a few days, unless the South Easter or North Wester came up, the shoals would have dwindled and the fishing would be poor. Continue reading “How do you gain the first-mover advantage as a small business?”
In our small suburb a cake and pastry shop opened up about five or six years ago. The cake and bakery shop has done well, now even delivering from several delivery vans. It’s interesting that this cake shop business is on the main road where it is visible to passer-by traffic.
You get a lot of this big business bashing from people who should know better. One guy comes to mind. He sold his business to a big company. But he keeps knocking them because of some due diligence they did after he was paid out. I’m surprised he does this. They paid him millions and set him up for life.
I visited a coffee and cake shop in Parys, Free State, called Plumb Bakery. This coffee and cake shop has been operating in the main road of Parys for several years. It’s become quite pricey and so I decided on my next visit into town from where we were staying next to the river to have coffee at the competition, which has been set up recently, at a coffee and French-style cuisine restaurant called La Vie en Rose. When I asked the manager, who by the way was a local detective moonlighting on a Sunday for the owner, what sort of business volume each of the shops experienced, she told me that it was about half. Continue reading “How does your small business stack up against your competition?”
A specialised company that keeps factories and production lines running and installs new equipment has a hard time finding and retaining technical labour with the oil sands industry in British Columbia, Canada.
The company Neutron Factory Works can’t compete with their $45 an hour wages against $75 an hour oil patch wages.
The shark spotters have spotted sharks in False Bay with the authorities confirming that they had spotted a shark near Fish Hoek beach. One of the shark spotters says when you see a lot of bird activity, seals or dolphins in the area this means there are fish about that attract the sharks.
The small beach of Fish Hoek has been struggling over the past few years because of the number of sharks that regularly enter the bay. Media coverage of shark attacks, which have occurred between Clovelly and Jagger’s Walk along Fish Hoek beach, has been prominent. The number of shark sightings and shark attacks led to the Western Cape authorities to introduce a shark net for the first time at Fish Hoek beach. Only time will tell whether these measures are effective. Continue reading “What happens when the sharks spot your new business idea?”
A security guard came to the manager of a certain business one morning and told him that the business person who shared premises had loaded up the back of his car with stock. On approaching the business owner who shared the premises, he claimed that he was in a rush and had left the money with the staff so that they could pay the other business owner when he opened his doors.
People make all sorts of excuses when they are caught red handed. But this story really goes to show how some people will behave given any sort of chance. One would expect that a business owner who shared premises with another business would safeguard the interests of both businesses but it didn’t turn out in this case. Action was not taken with the business owner who was caught red handed but increased security measures have been put in place so that this person will not do it again. The question mark that hangs over this incident is how much other stock has this business owner taken over the years?