Gugulethu's famous chisanyama

Braai business guru shares secret ingredient to his success

Taste of Gugulethu
Ngcawuzele entertains bikers at Mzoli's
In order to establish and successfully run a business in a township, one has to be driven by a desire to do good and be backed by the goodwill of residents in the chosen neighbourhood; the entrepreneur would need to exercise much patience and possess the will and savoir-faire to spread and share rewards accruing from such a venture. 

To succeed over time, everyone around has to see some benefit for themselves. 

This could come in the form of job creation, local procurement of soft goods and services, or by creating a feeder system of referrals to other businesses in the area, on the basis of shared desire to satisfy clients and keep them coming back for more. 

As in any business undertaking, cultivating patience is crucial. Without the goodwill and support of neighbouring communities, any business is unlikely to succeed. 

But few understand the secret to succeeding under these unwritten conditions than Mzoli Ngcawuzele, owner of Gugulethu-based Mzoli’s – the eponymous eatery that has become a township experience not to be missed when visiting the Mother City. 

“From the onset”, explains Mzoli (as he prefers to be called), “we wanted to establish a business hub in our area in order to grow local businesses and job opportunities for locals, by attracting tourist and business revenue. 

Mzoli’s has established itself as a feeder business for local pubs and other smaller businesses.

“While 60% to 80% of our business happens over weekends, coming mainly from foreign visitors and South Africans from outside Gugulethu, our weekdays are kept busy essentially by locals who have turned Mzoli’s into a hub of activity in the area. 

"People come to Mzoli’s to buy and eat meat prepared on the spot; they come to have a township experience and socialise with friends, to show visitors around and simply have a good time – while vacationing or after a day’s hard work,” Ngcawuzele said.
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