Is big data the future of business?

31 year old, Thabo Nonkenge is the CEO & Founder of Singulum Data. Singulum Data operates in the Information Communication & Technology (ICT) industry. The company has a desire to influence the way business is done, demystifying big data, analytics & business advisory. Singulum Data seeks to instil and establish a culture of data-centricity within all business and public environments, they provide clients with dashboard tools and real-time analytics based on clients enterprise software licensing. We have a brief conversation with Thabo Nonkenge on business and entrepreneurship:


Thabo Nonkenge, CEO & Founder of Singulum Data


  1. How long have you been in operation? 

Unofficially it’s been 2.5 years, officially since the 1st of September 2018.

  1. Why is your service necessary? 

Companies will not be future proof without the service I provide.

  1. What’s been your biggest challenge as an entrepreneur?

Accessing markets.

  1. What advice would you give to upcoming entrepreneurs? 

Start, whatever you are thinking of doing, and if you are already doing it, focus on solving specific business problems and find ways to innovate your product offering and creating value for your client.

  1. Is there any resource you’ve tapped into, that’s helped you as an entrepreneur? 

Yes, my network & leveraging those of others around me.


  1. If you would request one thing for your business right now? What would it be? 

I’m looking for data scientists to work with on a call basis to develop the longer term work and deliver on short term projects, SAS skills are important.

7.  Where can people find you?

Our offices are in Woodmead, Woodmead Estate, Johannesburg and people can visit our website on www.singulumdata.com


Stained Wines is here to disrupt the beverage industry!

Nozipho Hlophe, aged 24 and  Kamogelo Lesabe, aged 25 are the  co-founders for VertCo, which is a premium beverage company that owns Stained Wines. They operate in the beverage industry, with their current covering being in the wine sector. They offer premium boutique wines of Western Cape origin, forming partnerships in regions with the richest harvest, ripe for their customers best satisfaction. They also operate in the Youth Empowerment space, with both founders having a strong background in leadership and growth management. This is how the movement of #Wineversations came about: housing captains of industries and unique trailblazers, strangers to each other at each seating, to foster a culture of network expansion, viable collaboration, but most importantly peer knowledge sharing. VertCo has been in operation for 6 months on-book. We asked Kamogelo a couple of questions on their services, challenges and advice to other young entrepreneurs:


Nozipho Hlophe, Co-founder and Creative Director of VertCo

Kamogelo Lesabe, Co-Founder & Managing Director of VertCo



    1. Why is VertCo necessary?

We are at a prime time in our country and continent at large where we have a vacuum of youth participation in the economy and other spheres; the conversational and action-driven platforms we provide seeks to address the opportunities we can leverage off of through joint participation. Then secondly, the market, both domestic and international, is rife for products which are authentic and represent them across the spectrum. In a world where fabricated image is seen as perfectionism, we are redefining the notion by embodying a heightened sense of excellence through authenticity: which is a brand that can never be cloned.


     2. What’s been your biggest challenge as a business owner?

Funding for the start-up stage.


     3.  What advice would you give to upcoming entrepreneurs?

Start, then progress through trial & error. Secondly, be your biggest cheerleader: In the beginning it will be difficult and you may not get what you expect. But if you stick it out a little bit longer with an increasing passion and dedication, even the gated environments will issue invitations for your presence.


      4.  Is there any resource you’ve tapped into, that’s helped you as an entrepreneur?  

Following from our biggest challenge, the biggest (most difficult and most rewarding) resource we tapped into was Bootstrapping. Once we had exhausted all avenues of sourcing these, we rolled and stretched all we could to self-finance the vision, and from then onwards we have never rested to ensure that the fire burning inside of us seeps through and illuminates every client we provide our service & products to.


     5. If you would request one thing for your business right now? What would it be?

Brand awareness.


     6. Where can people find you? 

Email: info@stainedwines.co.za

Twitter: @WinesStained

Instagram: @stainedwines

Facebook: Stained Wines


     7. You mentioned Wineversations earlier on, when is the next event and how can people attend? 

The next Wineversations is taking place on the 26th of July,2019. Those that are interested that follow us on social media can indicate their interest to attend, and a postcard invitation may well be on their way for attendance!




Womandla, celebrating the power of women!

Womandla Foundation provides sustainable, relevant programmes in all spheres within technology, media, skills development, mentorship, and every sector they can use to empower women and young girls to live out their destiny. Womandla has been in operation for 4 years now, they officially registered in September 2018. Sam Gqomo, director of Womandla Foundation, says their biggest challenge as a NPO is, “securing funding for our projects and events”. Read more on our short conversation with Sam Gqomo on entrepreneurship, Womandla Foundation, their upcoming career expo and inaugural Women in STEM Awards below:


Director of Womandla Foundation, Sam Gqomo


1. Why is Womandla Foundation important?
We are solving socio-economic challenges by using our organization as a springboard for educating, training and equipping women with the resources needed to eliminate impoverishment and strive for excellence in various spheres

2. What advice would you give to upcoming entrepreneurs?
Pursue your passion and make sure it solves a larger pain point outside of just the industry needs. Make a difference in someone’s life.

3. Is there any resource you’ve tapped into, that’s helped you as an entrepreneur? What is it?
Canva as a graphic design tool, and human resources! Our projects are nothing without people (networks).

4. If you would request one thing for your business right now? What would it be?
We require our own office spaces or at least a shared space in Cape Town to operate from. We also would like pro bono assistance in terms of accountants that deals with the NPO sector, pro bono lawyers to assist in legal matters, pro bono graphic designer to build their portfolio and sponsors for stationary as a hard cost. Stationary includes paper, ink, 100 pens, 100 booklets and a Womandla Wall Banner.

5. Do you have any upcoming events? If yes, share more information on this?
Yes, the WOMANDLA Career Expo is a one-day only format being held on Friday, 12 July 2019. The Career Expo will be held at the Langa High School Hall and is aimed at exposing learners to various Career Expos.

We also have our Inaugural Women in STEM Awards coming up, see more on the link: https://www.bizcommunity.com/Article/196/701/192256.html?fbclid=IwAR3Zgpyk8v-tKcSbC9G9J4CRo3ltFU1la8M6Td-oWQUp57Wv8chBXOfMZZ4

To nominate yourself or others in STEM enter here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc-RRzp10YdPtVkJtSP5eRiXemUZ_SaDzeESvy1qbJYGkFJCQ/viewform?vc=0&c=0&w=1


Find all you need to know on Womandla Foundation here:

Website: www.womandla.com
IG: https://www.instagram.com/womandla/
FB: https://www.facebook.com/womandlaonline/
TW: https://twitter.com/Womandla1

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Maxine Gray invests her time in the future of our young ones

Maxine Gray is 28 years old, she’s a Board Member of imagine.nation (NPO) and founder of the Winter Warmer Initiative. Imagine.nation focuses on education and entrepreneurship in informal sector communities, particularly with a focus on Early Childhood Development (ECD). The Winter Warmer project is targeted at raising funds to provide polar fleece blankets to creches and other beneficiary organisations in need of assistance in keeping children warm while at school such that they can learn. Imagine.nation partners with a local supplier organisation who sources and makes up the polar fleece blankets. The Winter Warmer project started in 2010 as a personal project for Maxine and became an official imagine.nation project in 2015. Next year will be the 10-year anniversary for the Winter Warmer project.


We asked Maxine a couple of questions around the imagine.nation and the Winter Warmer project:


  1. Why is imagine.nation important?


We believe that education is the key to unlocking a better future for all and that if a child is given a good foundation, from an early age that he/she will be significantly more equipped to be able to develop, learn and grow into a successful adult. By providing a safe, educational space where children can learn from just a few months old to age 6 before entering primary school, it also enables parents to be able to seek employment and provide for their families thus promoting employment, higher income levels and assisting in alleviating poverty. I believe there is a direct link between ECD and alleviating poverty, using entrepreneurship to unlock economic potential.


  1. What’s been your biggest challenge in being a part of imagine.nation?


Balancing a full-time career and working in this space which I am so passionate about is difficult. Having limited time can make one feel despondent when progress seems slow or not at the pace I would have hoped, however looking back to where we have come from is always a great reminder of the compounded impact consistent work has had over the years. Also, funding and dedicated volunteers who are truly committed to the cause are always hard to come by.


  1. What advice would you give to other positive social change agents?


Always fuel your fire by consistently connecting with your passion, people that share your passion and surrounding yourself with people who support you in these endeavours. Never be too hard on yourself, set realistic goals based on your capacity and be consistent – a small amount of dedicated time, each day, compounds into great success over time – be patient and never give up.


  1. Is there any resource you’ve tapped into, that’s helped imagine.nation? What is it?


Family, friends, colleagues, social networks and fellow One Young World Ambassadors.


  1. If you would request one thing for the work you’re doing, what would it be?


For the Winter Warmer, with 2020 being the 10-year anniversary, my goal is to be able to raise enough funds to get 10 000 blankets distributed to children and organisations in need. As such, funding (donations) and support of the campaign, through social networks, family, friends and companies is required to be able to reach this goal. We are looking to raise R500k by June 2020 in order to achieve this.


  1. Any events coming up?


We run a program called “Parties with a Purpose” which we host once a month – the idea is to allow people to celebrate their Birthdays with an educational, fun morning at our Boitshepo creche in the Lanseria area. We are doing a Winter Warmer distribution at our Boitshepo creche on 7 July.


  1. For more information check out these pages or email Maxine:


Instagram: @imagine.nation_insta

Facebook: Imagine.nation

Email: maxinegray.imagine.nation@gmail.com