What is the Legends Programme?
The Legends Programme is a national business development initiative that supports accelerated growth in small businesses & NGOs nationwide. Open to entrepreneurs, SMEs, non-profits and community-based organisations across a range of sectors, the programme was conceived and developed by Fetola. Legends is active in all 9 Provinces across South Africa.
Who are the Project partners?
The programme was funded by the Old Mutual Foundation from 2007 - 2013, and is currently seeking a new headline sponsor.
When did the programme/project start?
Legends was started in June 2007. It was initially focused on the craft and design sectors, but since expanded to include tourism, hospitality, services, agriculture and other sectors.
What is on offer?
Interventions include a range of practical, needs-based business skills workshops, regular e-learning, business systems development, one-on-one and remote mentoring, market access, media support and peer-to-peer contact platforms.
What are the selection criteria for beneficiaries?
The criteria for accepting participants into the programme include the following: • They must be Black-owned businesses or community benefit projects, including social enterprises and non-profit organisations • Must be an enterprise with proven business viability • Must show viability and potential for growth • Leaders must show willingness to learn and to engage in change • Regular access to communications (email and cellphone) • Preference to enterprises benefiting women, rural communities, poor and needy communities, high poverty nodes, high impact in terms of job creation
How is Legends different from other similar programmes?
The Legends programme delivers exceptional results because it is designed and implemented by experienced entrepreneurs who have ‘walked the walk’ themselves. Programme performance has been remarkable, with overall beneficiary turnover increasing 290% (2007 – 2010) and job creation up 76%. Participant business numbers increased in 2012 from 67 to 85, and the goal is to considerably increase this number in the years ahead. The programme focuses on matters that directly relate to the success of your business or Social enterprise. Your time out of the business is kept to a minimum as training and support is available to you in your place of work, whilst the shared peer resource allows for networking with dozens of organisations and ensures that beneficiaries feel like part of a group of likeminded individuals.
What is innovative about what Legends does and/or its approach to what it does?
Notable programme innovations include: • A full range of Basic Business Building Blocks© which include template designed specifically for SMMEs in South Africa. • Business systems that include production management, simple CRM, sales reporting, time management, financial management and retail/stock management support. We have designed simple, user-friendly systems that are ideal for SMMEs. • The Volunteer Mentor Programme – teaming rural businesses with urban mentors. This new programme ensures shared value between businesses at all levels. It helps to build a sense of community throughout the country and upholds the ethos of nation-building. • The Mentor Hotline© provides expertise to businesses throughout the country via email and cellphone on a 24/7 basis. This exciting innovation reduces the cost of enterprise development and makes expert assistance available to all participants around the country, even where access to computers is difficult. • Peer to peer share network – a simple to use shared resource that puts participants in direct contact with each other, encourages communication and builds a sense of community. This network is also used to distribute e-learning skills training materials
How long do participants remain in the programme?
Legends is designed as a two-year intervention, however participant businesses are assessed annually in terms of performance and commitment and a decision is made as to their continued participation by the management team of the programme.
Are there any costs involved?
There is no charge for joining Legends, but all participants are expected to commit fully to the programme requirements and complete all tasks as agreed upon at the outset. Some of the national workshops and certain activities over and above programme parameters are carried out on a cost share basis.
What is expected from participants?
The Legends Programme offers an invaluable suite of services and support to participant organisations. Competition for acceptance to the programme is tight and places are limited, so we seek motivated and committed participants that really want to step up to the next level of success. Legends programme implementers expect the following: • Open and regular communication by email and phone • Participation on the shared participant platform • Timeous completion of e-learning tasks and other assignments • Monthly reporting on sales turnover and job figures – a template is provided for this • Enthusiasm, commitment and a desire to change!
What impact has Legends had for beneficiaries?
"Being part of the Legends programme has totally changed the way in which we run our business. It has given us the valuable tools necessary to grow our business in areas that we had not focussed on, due to lack of knowledge.” Julie Hadley – Owner, Heartfelt “Without doubt, being a part of Legends has helped us transform our company into a more organized, professional, confident and passionate business.” Zainab Paruk, co-owner Chilli Chocolate Chefs “Our funding went from R54,000 in 2010 to R1,1million in 2011! I do not know where we would be without the support of the Legends programme.” Neftaly Malatjie, MD Diepsloot Youth Projects