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Third upgrade of Soweto panelbeater shows South Africa the way
What an excellent way to end the winter!
Not only did we celebrate Madibaâ€™s Birthday this July, but we also celebrated the successful launch of Zombodzeâ€™s Panelbeaters at its new premises at Aeroton, Johannesburg on Thursday 9 July 2009.
The occasion marked a milestone in Alexander Forbesâ€™ Adopt a Panel Shop enterprise development initiative which assists informal auto body repairers to access main stream business by improving the equipment, facilities, service and grading of previously marginalised panel shops.
Zombodzeâ€™s is a family business, owner and manager, Mr. Sthembela Nkosi, said that â€œit was a proud day for the entire Nkosi family. He said that they was grateful to the support of their long standing clients as well as Alexander Forbes Risk & Insurance Services, and now also Investment Solutions, who had stuck by the business through thick and thin.â€
David Tennick, COO of Investment Solutions said that â€œmeeting the extended Nkosi family was an honour. In them he recognised many of the values of integrity, service and hard work central to the Investment Solutions culture. These values would stand Zombodze in good stead in the future.â€
Moetkesi Wa Mitane â€“ President of NAAASP, a partner in the Adopt a Panel Shop initiative, said that â€œAlexander Forbes had shown that real enterprise development was not just charity, signing a cheque, going away, and chalking up the spend on an empowerment scorecard.â€
Instead, Wa Mitane explained that Alexander Forbes had shown that â€œthrough real partnerships enterprise development could provide a strategic bridge between the informal and formal sectors, growing the industry by extending quality automotive repair service to a vast market of poorly serviced South African vehicle owners.â€
Richard Green, National Director of SAMBRA, presented Zombodze Panelbeaters with a SAMBRA Non- Structural Repairer grading award.
Green explained that for a project like this to succeed it needed good leadership and committed partners, adding that â€œin Wa Mitane, Alexander Forbes, RMI, the South African Motor Body Repairs Association, the National Youth Development Agency, and the Chamber of Commerce & Industry Johannesburg the project had both.â€
In three short years the Adopt a Shop initiative had assisted four informal automotive repair businesses enter the formal sector. Moreover, two more panel shops had been identified for upgrades in Kwa-Zulu Natal later in 2009 with longer term plans for the rest of the country.
â€œThe more partners and resources that this winning formula can command the quicker weâ€™ll grow this sector to service all South Africans and move our economy to new levels of service and productivityâ€ Green urged other industry players to team up with Alexander Forbes.
Gary Braude, Director of Hyundai Parts Distribution, representing the only manufacturer supporting the Adopt a Panel Shop initiative, was there to present Zombodze Panelbeaters with an Hyundai Approval rating.
â€œThe Adopt a Panel Shop initiative demonstrates that the South African automotive industry is not just a bunch of sharks out to steal your money. Weâ€™re here to serve the public with integrity by extending good service to all South Africans while providing quality jobsâ€, he added in closing.