What do you get when you combine a team of young potential entrepreneurs and the ingredients to make 20 litres of ginger beer? The introduction to the JA out of school youth enterprise development programme of course!
JA South Africa is always looking for ways to stimulate and motivate young people to launch their own small businesses and this is precisely why the ginger beer challenge is now included in the introductory session of the programme. In an effort to encourage programme participants to think entrepreneurially right from the beginning of the programme, students are divided into groups of five and are provided with the ingredients and a recipe to make 20L of ginger beer. Their challenge is to generate as much profit as possible through the sale of the ginger beer. Decisions as to who will make the ginger beer, where they will sell it, how to market it and the price are left completely up to the individual teams.
The Nalt company from the Ekurhuleni Business Centre programme funded by GE South Africa found their ginger beer to be so popular that they decided to continue with this business for the rest of the programme. After generating a net profit of R200 during the challenge, the group realised that there was a huge demand for their product as the traditional ginger beer made in African cultures is not available in retail stores. The team identified corporate office parks and taxi ranks as ideal points of sale and have doubled their profits. In an effort to ensure that their product is unique, the company is currently researching and testing individual family recipes for ginger beer to create their own unique, secret recipe.
The companies formed during a similar programme, called ITS TYME, at the Khaya Centre in Lehae, funded by Absa, all decided to continue selling their ginger beer. To ensure their competitive advantage, some teams have included products that complement the ginger beear flavour such as hot dogs, boerewors rolls and the like.
“This challenge is fantastic because it demands that the students pull together quickly. They only have a week in which to sell their ginger beer and the teamwork they need to display to complete the task is essential for the success of any potential entrepreneur” noted Joanne Bender, National Programmes Manager at JA South Africa.