Developmental Requirements for SMMEs in the Mahikeng Area
Small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) are omnipresent and form an integral part of every economy. Therefore, a discussion about the economy of every country cannot be complete without taking into consideration SMMEs. Different aspects related to SMMEs remain relevant most of the time or even all of the time, for example; the establishment, development, survival and growth of SMMEs. Whether a country or big businesses decide to be involved in SMME establishment, development, survival and growth, or not to be involved, conversations regarding these aspects will remain pertinent. In South Africa and many other countries, policies on SMME support are part of the economic agenda and efforts are made to ensure that SMMEs are provided with the support they require to develop. It is, however, always important to determine if the support being provided indeed matches the needs of SMMEs, so as to place an emphasis on useful programmes and to avoid wasting resources on programmes that are not needed. This study facilitates a discussion about the provision of suitable programmes to SMMEs in Mahikeng, by investigating the different forms of support available to SMMEs from public and private institutions and whether such support matches the needs of SMMEs or not. Ultimately, a symbiotic relationship should result, where SMMEs benefit through development and growth, and support institutions succeed in creating an economic environment where SMMEs also contribute towards the development of the country. An investigation of 421 SMMEs was undertaken based on criteria spawned from a review of business management theory and similar research projects. As a result, it was found that SMMEs require developmental support; there are challenges that hamper SMME development; many support programmes are not being utilised; SMMEs are aware of support institutions but do not utilise their support; and, most of the support programmes provided match the needs of SMMEs. The results of this study show that although most of the support programmes match the needs of SMMEs, those programmes are still not being utilised. Obviously, the objective contributing in towards the establishment, development, survival and growth of SMMEs is not being achieved. Further investigation is required to determine why these programmes are not being utilised.