South Africa’s township economy is one of the most significant contributors to the country’s overall economic well-being and is crucial to unlocking growth, inclusion and long-term stability for our nation.

An estimated 17% of South Africa’s total employment is through the so called ‘township economy’. In a country with an unemployment rate of over 30%, the informal sector is a lifeline for many South Africans. In addition, township entrepreneurs have a vital role to play in serving their communities.

Unlocking opportunity

The Ranyaka Building Business programme (RBB) is rooted in our team’s deep understanding of how the township market functions, especially in terms of the broader ecosystem within which these small businesses operate.

The programme extends well beyond capacity-building, needs-based training and mentorship. Access to new markets and platforms where township businesses and unserved markets can both showcase and trade is an integral part of the building business journey.

The first-ever Mamelodi Street Market took place at Solomon Mahlangu Square. The market was advertised widely on social media, radio and through printed marketing material distributed across Mamelodi in the run-up to the event.

Mamelodi talent in the spotlight

In November 2022, Ranyaka and the Nedbank Proud of my Town programme in collaboration with the City of Tshwane hosted the first-ever Street Market in Mamelodi township in Gauteng.

A total of 77 entrepreneurs (a number of which are members of the RBB programme) participated in the event which took place at Solomon Mahlangu Square. Informal businesses operate across a wide range of industries – and these were well-represented at the street market, with products and services on offer ranging from fashion, food, fresh produce and fine art, to home-made crafts, household appliances, cleaning and cosmetics. Also on offer were locally-produced beverages and jewellery, with service businesses promoting, amongst others, cyber and household security solutions and an on-site printing press.

The small business owners’ joint sales of over R60 000 is only the start of bigger things yet to come!

Nedbank also provided a children’s play area that included a financial literacy maze where children could navigate their way through the obstacles to discover a series of interactive learning stations where, through play and crafts, they could learn more about being money savvy.

A big thank you to the City of Tshwane for their support, as well as the Mamelodi Ranyaka Building Business committee for their volunteering services and outsourcing to local service providers. The committee also mobilised public participation in the event through the distribution of flyers across Mamelodi – and were present for on-the-ground coordination of the event.

Nedbank solutions – all hands on deck

Two days prior to the event, Nedbank provided training for the participating businesses – focusing specifically on various payment options, how to make use of portable Point of Sales (POS) devices as well as the Nedbank Money Message functionality that works through WhatsApp. Nedbank made POS devices available to the traders on the day and team members from branches across Mamelodi were present on the day to assist the entrepreneurs, as well as attend to any enquiries from the public.

Above: Lenyaka Merch Ltd

Above right: The Donut Lawd Lady

Above: Puno Entle

Above: The market provided a platform to showcase the creative talent of Mamelodi crafters.

Above: DJ Dihno provided entertainment!

Left: Masimo Indigenous Lifestyle | Right: Andile Mafa and Sithembiso Malevu (Ranyaka Community Transformation)

Above: Gallery Hopper Consultants in conversation with a prospective customer

Above: Makho Chemicals Ltd

Above left: Kitchenware sales | Above right: Alkaline Designer Water Ltd

Above left: Dee-Lera Water Supply | Above right: Dihno Cafe merchandise outlet

Left: Look Unique Clothing | Right: Phatsima Brand

Above: Black Preyum Ltd

Above: Basil Pesto exotic spices

Above: Mama Tee’s Gingerbeer

Above: Shaane’s Brass Band added to the festive mood on the day

Above: Representatives from various Nedbank branches across Mamelodi, including the manager of the Mams Mall branch, Rhulani Maluleke (right) attended the event and were involved hands-on both prior to the market day, as well as on the day. 

Above: Members of the Ranyaka Community Transformation team after a long day’s hard work! Team members from Ranyaka’s Umlazi (KwaZulu-Natal), Magaliesburg (Gauteng) and Stellenbosch (Western Cape) offices joined the Tshwane team for this milestone event in our Building Business journey.

Join us for the next market!

The second Mamelodi Street Market is scheduled to take place later this year (2023) and we welcome the participation of even more entrepreneurs and shoppers to contribute to the growth of the Mamelodi township economy.

To stay up-to-date on developments, please join the Proud of Mamelodi Facebook group for regular news and follow Ranyaka Community Transformation on our social media platforms. For general information, please email Lesego Masethe at or via Whatsapp at 072 515 8482.

Mamelodi is one of 25 communities in 8 provinces across South Africa that forms part of the Nedbank Proud of my Town programme for which Ranyaka is the implementation agent. Building Business is one of ten programmes that forms part of the over-arching Proud of my Town framework – a first of its kind for corporate South Africa that pursues the holistic and sustainable well-being and co-creation of thriving and resilient communities.