Let’s talk business & technology

The Small to Medium Enterprise sector in South Africa is under a lot of pressure; the stubbornly high rate of unemployment requires that businesses become economically and societally successful in order to contribute to the country’s GDP and to create job opportunities.

Entrepreneurs are not exempt from this pressure. As a matter of opinion, it appears that the responsibility to convert the astounding failure of government(s) to create jobs and create scalable businesses into opportunities sits squarely on the very shoulders of aspiring and already achieved business men and women.


Of course, the conditions to achieve this economical and societal success aren’t the easiest to overcome (and perhaps they aren’t supposed to be), otherwise everyone would pursue entrepreneurship and the world would be an oyster.

Here are some of these conditions that I’m referring to:

  • Job seekers still prefer corporate careers;
  • The second recession since ’94 has dropped confidence in the economy;
  • For many reasons (risk, society, etc) there’s a low tolerance for failure of entrepreneurs;
  • There are expected discrepancies between funding mandates & entrepreneur’s eligibility;
  • The oversupply of entrepreneurs in saturated markets is not showing signs of decline;
  • Overwhelming failures by Enterprise Development initiatives to realize real transformation;
  • The easily accessible forms of capital require security and collateral that entrepreneurs lack;
  • Attracting & retaining top talent is increasingly difficult within small business; and
  • Priority sectors getting government support are capital intensive and often monopolized.


South African businesses, small and large, that have garnered an appreciation for these conditions understand the value of the competitive advantage offered by technology. The result of this is seen in industry leaders across various sectors such as insurance and financial services; over the past few years, they demonstrated how the power of digitalisation can directly drive positive over-all growth and impact a business’ bottom-line.

It goes without saying that entrepreneurs, managers and customers respectively recognize technology as a tool for growth, to operate effectively and engaging businesses.

However, I’m not purporting that technology/digitalisation will soon be an answer to everything. We must recognize that accessing markets, networks and the necessary early stage financial support is as important to empowering businesses in a way that guarantees that is aligned and desirable to the nation’s 2030 ambitions.

I’m not the first, but I’m purporting that we adopt the aggressive mindset that says we’re to take advantage of the tools and opportunities that are near us, economically exploit these opportunities in a way that ensures meaningful economic participation & positive societal impact and build an ecosystem of financial & high moral value exchange.

What are your thoughts? Let’s talk business & technology…

@TsholoSehume on popular social platforms

By: Tsholo Sehume (MaruAfrica, CEO) – 19 January 2019

Image Src: The Real Estate of South African Entrepreneurship (www.seedengine.co.za)

Web Design Intern

Web Design Intern

About the Job:

We work with companies spanning a diverse set of industries: Financial Services, Real Estate, Technology, Lifestyle, Health & Fitness, Retail, Government, Advocacy, Non Profit, B2B, Legal, Creative…
If there’s a story to tell, a business to promote and a brand to introduce to the digital world, we’re there to make it happen.

Company Description:

MaruAfrica (Pty) Ltd is a growing hosting and value added telecommunications services start-up company headquartered at the Innovation Hub in Pretoria. We use our knowledge and understanding of technology to build solutions with business and societal relevance.

With every project, our goal is to find new and compelling ways to bring brand stories to life by using websites in a way that engages the right audiences and drives action — and do so in a way that makes them care, desire, trust, and connect.

Job Description:

MaruAfrica is looking for a Website Design Intern who will provide essential support for website development projects currently in progress. This position will provide valuable real-life experience working in a fast paced, creative work environment.

Under the direction of our Project Manager, and with one-on-one training with our website design team, the Intern with a keen eye for design will work with our team to solve problems and build innovative web solutions. You will contribute to a wide range of projects and will participate in all stages of design, development, testing, implementation, and maintenance.

We are looking for 20 hours/week time commitment, with a potential to hire on part time this fall.

Previous experience in HTML5, CSS3 and Adobe Suite is required. Any knowledge of WordPress, JavaScript, JQuery or PHP is a huge plus. The right candidate will possess an eagerness to identify, learn, and use new and emerging technologies.

The right candidate will be a quick study, with the ability to work independently and complete assigned tasks on time or ahead of schedule. Prior experience with WordPress is beneficial, though not mandatory, for this position. An eye for design will help to succeed in this position.

Personal skills/attributes

  • Team Player
  • Ability to work independently but under guidance
  • Strong problem-solving and decision-making ability
  • Strong time management and people skills
  • High energy, positive attitude
  • Attention to detail
  • Professional work ethic
  • Keen to learn
  • Ability to gather feedback/criticism and translate into finished product


  • Up to 1 years’ graphic/web design experience – preferable
  • Degree or diploma in web design or multimedia/graphic design – preferable
  • A very strong sense of visual design
  • Excellent knowledge of Adobe Suite (Photoshop, Dreamweaver, InDesign, and Illustrator)
  • Experience in designing wireframes – preferable
  • Solid knowledge of web standards, cross-browser compatibility, and accessibility
  • Solid knowledge of search engine optimisation (SEO)
  • Experience in WordPress, Bootstrap, HTML, and CSS
  • Strong eye for detail, typography and colour
  • Knowledge of current design and tech trends

MaruAfrica Perks & Benefits:

– Commitment required (minimum 30 hours per week)
– Compensation: Academic Credit & Transportation Stipend
– Our office is located at the Innovation Hub in Lynwood, Pretoria (nice, huh?)
– Music plays constantly – enjoy it



Independent Sales Representative

Part-Time Independent Sales Representative Contract

MaruAfrica has openings for motivated individuals operating in South Africa with customer service experience who want to be part of a fast growing website hosting, connectivity and development company. Potential candidates must be comfortable working independently and as part of a team in website and hosting sales through business networking.

Company and Job Overview:

MaruAfrica is a leading Internet Services Provider (ISP) with offices in Pretoria, Gauteng and a satellite office in Itsoseng, North West. We have been in business for 5 years providing custom website design, website hosting, and VoIP and connectivity services. We are passionate to help local businesses increase their online marketing efforts and effectiveness.

The right candidate will be outgoing, have a strong understanding of website and online marketing, and enjoys connecting with people.

As an independent sales contractor, you will be selling the Mahala Web Design Hosting package, Web Design and Web Hosting Services. You will earn a share of revenue from each account you bring in, and residual annual commission on all Mahala and Website hosting account sales.

Job Highlights:

  • Work from home; weekly/monthly staff meetings.
  • High commission base.
  • Digital business cards, marketing and promotional materials provided.
  • Strong company history, reputation, and portfolio along with name recognition locally.
  • Association with a number of local Brands and Chambers of Commerce.
  • Office space and conference in Pretoria, Lynwood available for client meetings.

The Independent Sales Representative will consult with small to medium sized business owners about their online advertising and marketing needs. Employee must be able to handle all aspects of the sales process, including identifying target clients, analyzing a company’s website needs, showcasing MaruAfrica’s portfolio and explaining website features, closing the sale, and maintaining customer relationships.

Responsibilities include: 

  • Responding to all leads provided by MaruAfrica. This includes arranging in-person or phone meetings, speaking with potential customers about their website needs, and closing sales.
  • Finding new leads through networking, trade shows or conventions, and local advertising.
  • (This one is up to you) 6-8 hours/week attending other networking events to increase company exposure and generate referrals.
  • Identifying prospective clients and working to find leads given specific target markets; generating new leads through networking and referrals.
  • Following up with prospective customers and selling new website features or services to current customers.
  • Promoting some of MaruAfrica’s current and ongoing marketing efforts: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Blog posts, E-mail Newsletters, and other marketing campaigns.
  • Periodic cold calling lead generation (recommended for reaching sales quota).
  • Professional company representation; website design portfolio and service overview presentation.
  • Monthly reports summarizing prospects, appointments, and schedule (use of CRM software may assist with this).
  • Meeting monthly sales quotas.

Minimum Qualifications & Experience:

  • Must have B2B company experience.
  • 2 years experience selling products, advertisement, or print preferred.
  • Experience with lead pre-qualification, list management, and digital campaign management.
  • Outgoing personality with strong interpersonal skills.
  • Strong computer skills, internet savvy, and ability to learn new skills with training.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • A strong work ethic: self-disciplined and self-motivated.
  • Organized, detail-oriented, consistently follow up on sales leads.
  • Motivated to make money.

Personal skills/attributes

  • Team Player
  • Ability to work independently but under guidance
  • Strong problem-solving and decision-making ability
  • Strong time management and people skills
  • High energy, positive attitude
  • Attention to detail
  • Professional work ethic
  • Keen to learn
  • Ability to gather feedback/criticism and translate into finished product

Having these could work to your advantage

  • BS degree in Marketing, Business or equivalent related field.
  • 3-5+ years of experience in progressive acquisition, lead generation, or digital marketing roles.
  • WordPress, SEO experience; including managing external SEO vendor.