The introduction of the Private Business Growth Awards (PBGA) has helped to cultivate a healthy competitive behaviour amongst private business companies, which has in turn helped to stimulate economic growth and opportunities. This is according to Vincent Seretse, the Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry who was the guest speaker at this year’s awards ceremony on Wednesday. The awards are held annually by Grant Thornton in collaboration with Business Botswana to recognise private businesses that have shown massive growth over the years. Seretse said NDP 11 and Vision 2036 speak to inclusive and sustainable growth as key anchors of Botswana’s transformative economic growth. He therefore said the awards clear the path for such growth. The purpose of the awards is to recognise privately-owned businesses in Botswana that approach growth from both a strategic and holistic perspective to create a positive impact well beyond their bottom line. Seretse said this is in line with his ministry’s efforts which seek to diversify the economy by developing and supporting the private sector and increasing local participation to contribute meaningfully to the country’s GDP. Having relied on mineral revenue since independence, Seretse said diversification remains a priority to elevate local economic growth, insisting that this can only be achieved by the private sector. “We have our challenges but our quest to create industries and world class infrastructure for all our people is unwavering and our optimism towards economic growth and development is second to none,” he declared.
Grant Thornton’s latest International Business Report 2017 is said to note that out of 26 countries surveyed, as at the end of the second quarter of 2017 Botswana businesses showed the second highest intension to expand domestically at 53 percent in comparison to the global average of 34 percent, and African average of 38 percent. “This, I believe reflects the mind-frame of many of the participants of tonight’s award, that have achieved growth in Botswana,” he said. Seretse said the good thing about these awards is the fact that it is not just anyone who participates but those who are committed to the great cause of growth as outlined in the theme of “creating momentum for growth”. The awards recognise businesses that demonstrate holistic growth and encompass a broad range of activities across their business such as innovation, market development, people and culture, strategic leadership and improvements in financial measures. This year Security Systems walked away with the award in large scale category while Hotwire was voted the winner in the medium category. Flo-Tek was awarded investor of the year in the manufacturing sector, an award which was sponsored by Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC).