Business

Why South Africa should be run like the Loeries

Two icons meet on stage Photo: Gallo Exhilarating, exhausting and, most of all, enlightening. I’ve just returned from a two week road trip and social media campaign, travelling down to Cape Town for the Loerie Awards. (You can read all about the campaign here.) It was unbelievably hard work and worth every Red Bull-fueled moment…

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That elusive economic freedom

We all know that politicians twist words to suit occasion, but the use of nationalisation is the most egregious yet. At times, nationalisation is taken to mean state intervention, for instance by setting up new companies, though that is not the general meaning. My friend Steven Friedman has argued that the ANCYL specifically means selective…

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How much do CVs still matter?

When was the last time somebody asked you for your CV? I’m not talking about the notion of a CV in the broader sense, the what-I-did-when — that will always be relevant when you need to send off a profile to, say, the conference organizer who wants you as a speaker. What I mean is…

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A cellular licence to print money

Cellular companies were happy to take advantage of consumers – many illiterate and poor, and for whom a cellphone is a necessity that comes at a disproportionately large monthly cost – for as long as they could get away with it.

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Targeting gaps in the food supply chain

Crossposted from the Worldwatch Institute’s Nourishing the Planet. Agricultural production is only the first step in moving the world’s food from farm to fork, according to Nourishing the Planet, a project of the Worldwatch Institute. The other links in the food chain – harvesting, packaging, storing, transporting, marketing, and selling – ensure that food actually…

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Walmart and South Africa’s misplaced inadequacy

I think South Africa has a small touch of an inferiority complex. An amazing country, with so much potential, but you just don’t always know it.  At least I’m assuming this to be the reason why business leaders, government and excited shoppers have rolled over and prepared for a “corrective” rape from one of the…

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Why Jeffrey Sachs is wrong about sweatshops

The news that a Romanian sweatshop manufactured one of Kate Middleton’s most famous dresses has inspired renewed popular interest in the ethics and economics of outsourcing jobs to utilise super-cheap labour. This is only the most recent in a string of cases that exemplify the shocking proliferation of sweatshops — even across Europe — over the…

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Polishing turds won’t save our papers

Circulation of English language broadsheets in South Africa is largely in decline. We all know that. But the response hasn’t been to invest in better content. Instead, staff numbers have been slashed, news from elsewhere gets regurgitated and a fixation with other media — websites, multimedia and, of course, Twitter — has developed. Most of…

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Saving Uganda from its oil

In 2006, Uganda confirmed the presence of enormous commercial petroleum reserves around Lake Albert along the country’s western border. Since then, geologists have proven at least 2 billion barrels. With only about 25% of the region explored, some reports indicate that there could be as much as three times that amount — enough to make Uganda…

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Celebrating the Consumer Act

It’s taken me a little while, but I’m truly starting to understand and revel in the full implications of the Consumer Protection Act brought into effect in March this year. The introduction of the CPA, along with some personal experiences in the first half of this year have certainly fuelled the fire of my desire…

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