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TKO Consultancy: Personal Financial Coaching Programs in Lesotho

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Could you please introduce yourself and your company?

My name is Tokiso Nthebe, a Financial Literacy Consultant and founder of TKO Consultancy. I am very passionate about financial literacy, public speaking and youth development. I hold a Masters of Commerce (MCom) degree in Financial Management from the University of Pretoria. TKO Consultancy (Pty) Ltd, founded in June 2015, is a company that operates from Maseru (Capital city) in Lesotho. We provide financial education programs that help employed Basotho (people of Lesotho) better manage their money, save and plan for their futures. We also provide financial coaching sessions on a one on one basis to help employees navigate the financial web and achieve their financial goals.

 

How was your company started: what was the main ambition when you started your project?

I registered TKO Consultancy in 2015 and the goal was to provide business advisory services to small-medium businesses (SME) i.e. financial management to help them access credit facilities from commercial banks and build their businesses. At the time I was working for a commercial bank as a Relationship Manager and I was very frustrated with the quality of financial statements received from SMEs when applying for credit facilities. The business did not operate from 2015 to 2016 because I was permanently employed and had limited time. I re-launched the business in 2016 after taking stock of my personal finances and realizing the financial mistakes i.e. high levels of unsecured debt (clothing accounts, personal loans, and credit card), no savings or investments I made as a young professional. It was even worse, being a finance graduate and employee at a bank because I should have known better. I decided to blog about my financial mistakes and share them on social media. This attracted a lot of attention from other young people faced with the same challenges as me.

Secondly, my biggest concern was seeing my friend’s mother change and lower their standard of living when she went to retirement years. I started doing research to better understand why this happened and the findings were not good. Most people going on retirement did not have enough savings to maintain them through retirement and this was a problem in Lesotho and other parts of the world. I continued with the research topic and enrolled for my Master’s degree. These two stories inspired me to re-structure my business and focus on driving financial literacy and encouraging people to plan and save for their retirement.

 

How would you describe financial education in Lesotho when you started your project?

The Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL) in partnership with other financial services providers started the Money Week campaign to drive financial literacy in 2014. The goal of the campaign was to create awareness on money matters and educate Basotho. The campaign, however, only lasted two weeks until 2018 when it was changed to a month-long campaign. When I re-launched my business in 2017, a lot of groundwork had been made, however, there were still so many people that the campaign did not reach. Secondly, the campaign ran only for a week, which was very short to drive the message. There were a few other initiatives to drive financial education but there was still a big opportunity in the market. According to an article by Lesotho Times, about 50% of household income paid a debt, whilst approximately 85% of employees were not prepared for retirement according to Metropolitan.

 

Many young people in Lesotho were embarrassed to talk about money matters. Our goal was to tackle financial challenges that face young people and seek to brainstorm remedies with them.

 

Did you feel that the people around you were in need to get more information about financial education? Do you remember any critical moment when you understood it was an important need?

A lot of people around me were also highly indebted and did not even know what interest they were paying for the credit facilities. The challenge, however, was that too many were embarrassed to talk about money matters. I decided to host a Financial Wellness Seminar in partnership with Metropolitan Lesotho in March 2017 and a total of 40 people attended the seminar. We covered topics such as budgeting, savings and investments, retirement planning and understanding contracts. The questions and feedback from attendees were indicative of the need for financial education. As a follow up from the seminar, I decided to work with Bokang Bane from Bokamoso Fm to host a weekly segment titled #MoneyTalk on Tuesday mornings. Through this platform, our goal was to tackle financial challenges that face young people and seek to brainstorm remedies with them.

It was in 2018 when I realized the importance of financial education. I had the opportunity to present at a Pre-retirement Preparedness workshop held at the National University of Lesotho (NUL) and Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) for employees set to retire within 3-5 years. I was very concerned by the level of anxiety I saw on the faces of the attendees and this made me very uncomfortable. It was evident that many of the attendees were worried about whether they had enough saved up for retirement or not. This was validation that I needed to work hard in my advocacy work for financial wellness and help build a financially educated nation.

 

Could you explain more in detail how do you work: what can one find at TKO Consultancy?

We at TKO Consultancy (Pty) Ltd believe that the solution to addressing the problem is in driving financial literacy campaigns targeting employed professionals. We aim to implement this campaign by sharing relevant financial content via radio interviews, blog posts, and speaking engagements. As part of the awareness campaigns, we also provide financial education workshops for employees by working with Human Resource Officers in the private, public and non-governmental organizations. These programs aim to equip our clients with practical and educational tools (budget and debt management, investment, retirement, tax, health planning, and risk management) that will help them better plan and manage their finances. These workshops are held on-site or held at external venues around the city. Finally, our plan is to match individuals with our team of financial coaches to help develop financial plans that will help clients achieve their financial goals. As a secondary service offering, we also provide presentation skills workshops for employees to help them build their self-confidence to speak and communicate effectively in public.

 

With this age of mobile phone and applications, do you feel that financial independence is easier to achieve nowadays?

I believe that the availability of technology and applications are helping drive the message further. We are able to stream personal finance podcast anytime and read content on our devices with ease because of technology. This has helped a lot because the content is readily available.  There are many applications available that help us a budget and track our spending. The challenge, however, is that unless people are aware of these tools and know-how to use them effectively, financial independence may not be easily achieved. Our goal is to start promoting digital financial education to make it appealing to the younger generation. Many people are transacting using mobile apps and mobile money and it is imperative that we also educate them about the benefits and disadvantage, while also working hard to help those who are excluded participate.

 

A few words about your competitors

The landscape is increasingly becoming competitive as more players enter the market, especially from outside Lesotho. The offering is almost similar and thus becomes important that we differentiate ourselves to stay competitive. There is still a lot of work to be done however, which is an opportunity to grow.

 

What are the forthcoming projects and your goals?

  • We are launching a #SavingsChallenge, a social media campaign in August/September 2019. Every January/February, young people are broke due to excessive spending over the festive season in December. As a result, many experience financial distress and struggle through January and February and often resort to debt instruments to get by i.e. overdrafts, credit cards, etc. This year, TKO Consultancy would like to change the narrative and get young people to be intentional about saving and avoid this situation. The goal is to encourage people to save and to do so regularly and consistently.
  • Personal Finance Master-class planned for September/October 2019. This is the 3rd edition in our master class series for 2019 where we will discuss debt management strategies to help employees reduce their debt levels. The first one held in February focused on the budgeting and the second held in June focused on personal taxes and highlighted the importance of filing tax returns.
  • Digital Financial education: The plan is to digitalize our content and make it readily available to anyone with a smartphone.

Our goal is to partner up with financial services providers in Lesotho and employers to create platforms where we can engage employees on various topics of financial planning. Secondly, we want to increase our client base and grow our business in 2019/2020.

 

TKO Consulting’s success factors

  • A tailored program for clients to address and solve their own pain points
  • Interactive, education and fun experience for our participants
  • Partnering with local companies e.g. Metropolitan Lesotho in 2017, Lesotho Revenue Authority in 2019
  • Hosting successful events e.g. Financial Education seminar, Two personal finance master-classes, and several workshops
  • Participating in the prestigious Mandela Fellowship Program (MWF) under the Leadership in Business at the Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management institute in the United States of America in 2019

 

Websitehttp://tkoconsultancy.com/

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/www.tkoconsultant.co.ls/

 

 

With my experience working in the international development sector, I write articles about innovation and creativity.

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Consulting

Platinum Africa Solutions : a Consultancy Firms helping businesses to strategize, organize and globalize in Africa

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Tell us a few words about the founders and how the idea came

The passion to see businesses in Africa grow and become profitable led the founder Derrick S. Vormawor to start Platinum Africa Solutions Limited from his father’s living room with just a borrowed laptop in November 2015, into what is now a profitable business consulting firm which consults for businesses in Ghana, Nigeria, Israel, USA, Kenya, etc directly employing about 6 permanent staff and over 10 temporal staff.

Your products and services 

Business consulting, business strategy development, business plan and proposal development, market research, products development, business investment consulting, corporate training and The business startup clinic.

Your success factors 

We have drawn business strategies and plans for clients in and outside of Africa which helped most of them get funding of about US $ 4million and still counting. Our clients’ success’ are our success stories and we have a number of them. Again in 2016, our founder was named among Top 100 Student Entrepreneurs in Ghana; 2017 our company was nominated for Ghana Startup Award and our founder again nominated for Best Consultancy and Professional Services in The 40 under 40 Awards Ghana.

Your factors differentiating and disruptive compared to the existing 

Everyone out there isn’t just looking for the best service, but rather someone they can trust. We do our business in the most diligent and honest way as possible, holding up our integrity. Our hallmark has been taking on what we can deliver and delivering what we take on. We mean what we say to clients and because we love what we do, we do it with so much love.

Your business model 

We make money from our services, public speaking and also our flagship event, The Business Startup Clinic.

A few words about your competitors

We do not have any direct competitors but we hope to grow bigger to become like PWC and Deloitte. 

Your website 

http://www.paslglobal.com

 

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Transolution Ventures : providing services that bring real value to help you succeed

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Patrick Njiru is a teambuilding specialist with over 9 years of progressive experience in teambuilding, 6 years now as Transolution Ventures Director and teambuilding facilitator. 8 years working for Bluesky Adventures as a lead facilitator in their outdoor course. He is our special Fitness trainer and facilitators. Patrick is a certified level 2 trainer by the Association for challenge course technology.

Since 2010, we as Transolution Ventures have built relationships with teams and led them through exercises, leadership programs, and adventure trips that have helped people step up to business challenges, climb higher personally and professionally, and lead teams more effectively. The challenge is how to encourage unity, trust and open communication among a diverse group of people and personalities. That’s what Transolution ventures facilitators do best.

The ability to work as a team is integral to the success of any organization.”

Through our specialized experiential learning technique, we ensure that all the activities are objective towards elements of a team you would want to perfect. Teams learn to communicate better, creatively solve problems and motivate positive progress. But the benefits aren’t just for a team; they’re personal too. People come away from the training understanding their strengths, prepared to achieve their goals and ready to lead with confidence.

“People learn best when they can “do,” not just hear information”

Coprate Social Responsibility consulting

Transoluntion Ventures is fortunate in its involvement in providing team building that supports CSR with many different organizations. Assisting organizations to build high performing teams is rewarding in itself. Assisting organizations to make a significant contribution to their community as a direct result of developing high performing teams is even better. The trend toward building Corporate Social Responsibility/philanthropy into team-building activities is a movement Transolution Ventures has embraced. We recognize that our clients are looking for innovative ways to make emotional and lasting connections among their teams. With our CSR team-building programs, guests walk away with a sense of gratitude, pride, accomplishment and goodwill toward their company.

Transolution Ventures also offers :

Transport services

     Our wide Range of spacious and comfortable vans, Land cruisers, buses and mini vans are a guarantee to our clients satisfaction. Accompanied by our professional Chauffeurs you are assured of good customer care, a fluent English speaker and efficiency.

Tours & travel Safaris 

      We organize all inbound tours / outbound tours for individual and group travelers with tailor made itineraries.

 Hotel bookings

     We do hotel bookings as well as the packages in all major tourist destination in Kenya and abroad. We have separate department for handling hotel booking and tours.    

Adventure trips which include but are not limited to :

a. Rock climbing

This wonderful experience includes two different

adventures! Outdoor rock Climbing and Indoor rock climbing have joined forces to create one super experience. Outdoor Rock Climbing is a very rewarding activity; it is both physically and technically challenging and is also great fun for a team.

b. Bungee jumping

Bungee jumping is definitely one of the most popular extreme sports we offer, and with very good reason. Bungee forces us to face our fears, test ourselves and push our limits to the absolute max. Oh, and it’s really, really good fun.

c. Quad biking

we offer a unique and fun teambuilding experience on quad motorcycles. Participants do not need to be physically fit. We have semi-automatic and automatic quads and can accommodate all levels of riding. We supply protective kit including helmets, chest protectors and goggles. Full instruction is always provided so no previous experience is necessary. Both men and woman participants are welcome.

d. Paintball shooting adventure

Paintball, the Sport which players eliminate opponents from play by hitting them with paintballs shot from a compressed air powered canister. This activity is 100% safe for everyone and accommodates almost everyone in a team.

e. High ropes adventure

Treat your team with a challenge on the Ropes Course! They will enjoy a wide range of thrilling activities from flying squirrel, pipe dream, islands in the sky to a climbing wall, all under the supervision of a qualified instructor! With a group of 10 (up to 90 people max!) this makes a perfect office day out or office party.

Website : http://transolution-ventures.business.otonomic.com/

 

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Consulting

“Vulture Academy” offers training to would-be small business owners to minimize failure

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I have been an entrepreneur for more than 40 years. In 2002 I wrote a book tiled ‘Soaring Above vultures – How to survive as a small business‘. The book sold out immediately and I left it alone until 2016.  So many laws had come into effect that were troublesome for small businesses, I rewrote the book with a partner who was a specialists in business laws. We have published (Soaring II)the book privately and the first print run sold out to one customer – a college. The challenge they and many other educational institutions face is two-fold :

1 The graduates cannot find employment.

2. The first year drop-out rate puts many under-educated students on the street and unemployable.

I have restarted the Vulture Academy – The non-academic academy that offers real-life training in business skills for entrepreneurs. In this training venture we offer face-to-face training modules (23 in all) presented by entrepreneurs and specialists in their fields of business. We aim to offer 5 days courses in which students will be taken from the very first steps in starting a small business, through the minefields of day-to-day business challenges, to expansion, merges, take-overs, and franchising.

Each student will be given a copy of ‘Soaring Above Vultures II’ and a note book pre-loaded with examples of business plans cash-flows, etc, and advertising ideas and other needed material.

Since 1976, I have provided interventions for improving English skills in speaking, reading, and writing and adult numeracy.

 I am still in business 40 years later!

 We have a long and successful track record, especially in helping struggling students. 

 We supply our programs in just about every possible way – directly, through agents and distributors, and online. 

 Our main competitors in English Skills are far too expensive and too US-oriented. We have yet to lose to such a company. 

 www.perlsreading.co.za

 

 

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