My name is Marcia Simelane, I run a company called Alurcia Aluminium and Glass. We make and install aluminium windows and doors.
I think our economy depends on the success of manufacturing in SA. Our success will contribute to the greater wellbeing of SA.
2017 was a tough year for the country, and for our business. It’s been very tough. But I believe it will get better.
We’re facing a lot of challenges. We now have competitors, new entrants that don’t necessarily care about the quality of their work. But the main challenge is access to markets.
Alurcia Aluminium and Glass
Main activity: Small business ownership, manufacturing
Focus area: Economic development, skill development
I think our economy depends on the success of manufacturing in SA.Marcia
We struggle a lot with accessing the right markets. Currently, I market to and service individuals.
It would go much faster if I partnered with a construction company or a developer, or maybe an architect, and therefore have access to more consistent work. They would give me more jobs wherever they build. In Joburg there’s a lot of development, but because we don’t have access to developers, we lack those projects.
I need access to construction companies and developers because they’re the ones who have control over the market, and would help to bring us business. In this scenario, you have someone who is already renovating, and they already know they have to install these aluminium windows. Now you just have to be recommended by someone they trust. Through a setup like this, we would have access to more clients through these construction companies and similar networks, instead of trying to sell our services to individual homeowners. This would make our business more sustainable.
What I do matters. It matters because it showed me, even while I was studying, that I’m able, I’m capable, to do job that I do. Even myself—there was a time I didn’t believe I could do it, but I’ve seen that I can. And I want to show as many people as I can reach that you can do anything, as long as you put your mind to it.
I need access to construction companies and developers because they’re the ones who have control over the market, and would help to bring us business.Marcia
Obviously, what I do is very visual. So, getting to see my creation, and the smile from a client on completion of the work—this matters to me.
Opportunities are endless. It’s just a matter of how you access those opportunities, one of them being access to corporates. We need to do the legwork and understand what corporates are looking for. Then we go in and say, this is the program you have, this is the solution I have for you.
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