FUND LAUNCH: 2010 FUND SIZE: R 161 000 000
Agriligna is a manufacturer of wood plastic composite (WPC) and downstream products. The company has proprietary IP for WPC in South Africa, and is the only manufacturer of its kind in the country. Vumela was attracted by Agriligna’s proven product and market despite its early stage. Vumela exited Agriligna in 2015.
Coega Autospray (CAS) is a spray painter of car parts for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of automobiles in South Africa. Despite the financial distress CAS experienced due to the recession as well as the loss of a major contract, Vumela backed its growth prospects due to a strong future pipeline of contracts and a competitive advantage in the region.
Prominent Tulips (exited)
Prominent Tulips is the only tulip grower in South Africa that is capable of producing tulips all year round. When Vumela invested, the business had a proven product and market despite small revenues and negative profits and cash flows, and an attractive contract with Woolworths that our investment would leverage. Vumela exited Prominent Tulips in 2013.
Opti-Baby is a chain of specialised childhood development centres for children under 5 years of age. The company also sells pre-school educational play programmes. Playing in a niche growth market and with seven operational centres that were achieving small profits, Vumela chose to invest and help accelerate growth by adding five additional centres.
Envande is the first and only company in South Africa to recycle rubber into high-quality rubber crumb and reclaim that can be used in the manufacture of new tyres. Vumela’s investment allowed Envande to acquire a new reclaim machine from China and scale up its production to meet the tyre needs of original equipment manufacturers.
Everlytic is a service provider of integrated email, mobile and social communications tools that are used by companies to connect with and market to their clients and potential clients at a low cost. Being the best and only local provider of this enterprise level software attracted Vumela to acquire a significant minority stake in the business and help it dominate the SA market. Vumela helped management exit to Vox Telecoms in 2016, securing their own future exit in the process.
FB Mining provides specialised ventilation seals for mining operations, which can be installed by a very small team in an extremely fast, safe and cost-effective manner. With commodity prices under pressure, Vumela saw an opportunity to back a business that helps mines save significant cost.
DCEG was formed in 2012 with the intention of providing affordable private schooling in the Gauteng area based on the fundamental principle of teaching excellence. Vumela’s investment has helped the group add two further schools to its portfolio, which it hopes to continue growing ahead of significant increasing demand for private education by middle income families in South Africa.
FUND LAUNCH: 2015 FUND SIZE: R 227 000 000
Origin is South Africa’s first family centred, midwife-led hospital that promotes natural birth options for pregnant women. With a C-section rate as high as 70% in private hospitals, Vumela was attracted to Origin’s ambition to reverse this trend and offer the delivery of safe, high-quality care to expecting mothers and their families. Origin is expected to create 35 new jobs.
Brand Inscentives was the first company to introduce the concept of scent marketing to South Africa, and have grown to be a significant player in the manufacture and installation of commercial fragrance diffusers for use in retail spaces such as hotels, casinos and retail stores. Scent marketing is a niche sector that we believe will experience considerable growth over the medium term, with Brand Inscentives at the forefront.
Business For Good (BFG) Retail manufactures and prints retail merchandise for both in-store development and in-store promotional advertising. One of the only majority black-owned businesses in this space, BFG Retail has grown strongly to the point where it now services blue chip customers such as Mr Price and Build-it. Vumela expects this growth trend to continue, in particular by providing access to corporate supply chains such as FNB. The business is majority owned by a rural KZN community and is expected to create 63 jobs.
Vumela partnered with Uber and Wesbank to launch an innovative guarantee scheme that enables the bank to provide vehicles on a long-term lease basis to Uber drivers who may otherwise never have been able to access their own vehicle. The scheme is expected to put over 900 new Uber drivers on the road.
Sweepsouth launched their online and mobile domestic cleaning booking platform in June 2014. The business has since seen exponential growth, has attracted seed and Series A investment and has won numerous awards, including participation on the “500 Startups” accelerator programme in Silicon Valley. Vumela was attracted to Sweepsouth’s ability to execute and build technology that will enable them to scale robustly in an attractive market, creating over 700 jobs for low-skilled black females in the process.
Eagle Towers, a 100% BEE company, was established late 2015 in the Western Cape by industry experts with the aim of creating a substantial presence in the independent cellular tower sector by acquiring, building and renting such towers to Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) thereby capitalising on the global MNO trend of co-locating on cellular towers and the increased demand for towers given the growth data usage. It has subsequently gained significant traction with 10 towers in its portfolio and over 25 MNO leases signed.
Pioneer Academies is an independent school network offering excellent and affordable enquiry-based education that is focused on both the cognitive and emotional development of students. Their schools offer pre-school through secondary education for students from ages 3 through 19.
Over the next 20 years, 100 million children will become young adults across Africa. That is more than the rest of the world combined. Each one of those young Africans dreams a great dream for themselves – a dream of achieving success and of making a positive contribution to the world. Pioneer Academies was started to equip as many of those youth as possible to realise their great dream.
Established in 2009, Mobenzi is a mobile technology business based in Cape Town. It has developed a suite of products which include flexible mobile apps and SaaS platforms, which are used locally and internationally, in the health, research, education and agricultural sectors.
Mobenzi has a blue-chip client base including some of the world’s leading academic institutions, development agencies and across the public and private sectors. It supports over 7,000 frontline workers in 40+ countries, by enabling mobile interactions such as data collection and case management. Vumela was attracted to the strong management team, their focus on creating impact and the proven platform offering which continues to be a powerful enabler for job creation globally.
The 10X-e scale up programme was proudly created by Vumela and Edge Growth, born out of 10 years of Edge Directors’ work with talented entrepreneurial teams, as entrepreneurs in their own rights, investors, SME growth advisors, and entrepreneurship specialists. 10X-e is Vumela’s chosen growth support model for its portfolio and is subsidised for Vumela companies. Here is some feedback from entrepreneurs that have attended the 3-day bootcamp at the beginning of each cohort:
“The course was great in highlighting some of the current and potential future pitfalls we will come across as a business moving from the startup to scale up phase. It was scary to see upfront what we’re up against, but also comforting to know from a team with experience based on dealing with startups over many years, that these pitfalls are avoidable. Concrete examples and multimedia messaging helped to make complex challenges clearer and kept us engaged throughout quite a rigorous bootcamp. It offers practical information about navigating through things like having a growing team, needing to continue positive growth with growing challenges, being a leader vs being a manager, and continuing to stay motivated through it all!”
“A must for all entrepreneurs that are past the start-up phase… There is nothing like it out there. Miss it at your own peril!”
“I am not someone who gives praise very easily. I have always been the type of person who is not gracious at suffering fools very well. So please take this praise as hard but deservedly won. What I am trying to say is that I have never been on a management course that has been so relevant. The content and the way it was presented is world class. My team and I have been re-energised again to tackle this crazy thing called scaling up. I loved the way that scaling up a business is treated as a science, with proven methods and systems that work. This just makes so much sense to me. There were so many epiphany moments that I lost count.”
“Jason is a great presenter and workshop facilitator. He is exceptionally knowledgeable when it comes to growth and scaling strategies and I enjoyed his approach. He really did manage to inspire us and even more important – got us to start implementing the knowledge he shared with us.”