By Hileni Nembwaya
THE highly-anticipated Northern SME Awards nomination process, for entrepreneurs in Oshana, Omusati, Ohangwena and Oshikoto has kicked off, with the doors now wide open for participants to enter their businesses.
Application forms can be obtained from the Namibia Commerce and Industry (NCCI) offices in Ongwediva, and the due date for submissions is 15 June.
The awards are being organised by Namibia New Age Investments (NNAI), in partnership with the NCCI Northern Branch, the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation and Confidente.
NNAI executive, Isaac Tjaronda, said the objectives of the awards are to provide a platform for the SME businesses to grow, inspire and act as a driver, so local SMEs can prosper.
The awards also want to restore a sense of encouragement, recognition and appreciation for the hard work that businesses deliver, as well as their dedication and ambition.
“Our vision is nationalising the SME Awards into a domestic brand that adds value and credibility to the Namibian SME sector. Our idea for the SME Awards came about, because there is lack of national recognition of SME employers, who excel in different activities,” said Tjaronda.
The awards ceremony is scheduled to take place on 1 July, under the theme ‘Namibian recognition you deserve’.
Information about the venue for the awards show will be communicated in due course.
Tjaronda said that the focus is currently on Oshana, Oshikoto, Ohangwena and Omusati, with future plans to expand to other regions, and nationalise the concept.
“This dream can only come true, if we join hands and unite in this noble task; united we stand and divided we fall. We need assistance and support from all sectors and individuals, to ensure that our Namibian goal and objectives of the SME Awards can come true, and that other countries can emulate our good practices. Let’s jointly establish a foundation that our next generations can be proud and advance on,” Tjaronda said.
An amount of more than N$200 000 was raised during a gala dinner last Saturday.
Among the categories that can be entered are Best SME of the Year, Most Innovative SME of the Year, Best SME Employer of the Year and Best SME Woman of the Year.
Special recognition will be given to two categories, namely the Macro Business Award of the Year and the Lifetime Achiever Award of the Year.
The Macro Business Award of the Year is for businesses operating in the informal sector, in acknowledgement of their hard work, persistence and financial support for families and children, who are successful people in society.
The Lifetime Achiever Award of the Year category is for individuals who started from nothing, but built a reputable business or businesses, while contributing to society.
The success of the awards ceremony depends solely on sponsorship. The funds will be used for prices and for organising the entire event.
The funds will be used for trophies, certificates, cash prices, vouchers, the venue, performers, sound system and catering.
“More categories and different sectors will be catered for in the years to come, as this is a new concept, so we would love to start small and build on our foundation,” said Tjaronda.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015