The restaurant sector is urging the government to reconsider its blanket ban on sales, except for takeaways and deliveries. According to industry executives, the broad approach of the adjusted Level 4 restrictions lumps together sit-down venues, takeaways, bars, taverns and other eateries, and lacks an understanding of the operations of each sector and how best to serve and protect the people and the jobs in those sectors.

In announcing the country’s Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan in February, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the era of big corporates creating thousands of jobs had passed, and there is a greater move to recognise the need to open opportunities to entrepreneurs.

While 98% of formal businesses are small, medium or micro-enterprises (SMMEs), they account for a far smaller contribution to employment and the  GDP, Ramaphosa said. To achieve the goal of the National Development Plan, which targets SMMEs creating at least 90% of the targeted 11-million new jobs by 2030, the country needs to pay far closer attention to developing small businesses.

Michael Avery is joined by Mike Maree, serial entrepreneur and one of the co-founders of the Mugg and Bean franchise; Henk Botha, FNB’s restaurant industry specialist; and Grace Harding, CEO of Ocean Basket and spokesperson for The Restaurant Collective to talk about how the sector has held up and what is required for it to grow.


Michael Avery and guests discuss the effects of Covid on SA's franchise industry

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