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Arandis expo attracts more local exhibitors

 Anna-Marie Ellitson (far left) of Desert Trend, welcomes visitors to her stand during the 2011 Arandis Expo held on 28 and 29 October at the town. Interest from entrepreneurs in the Arandis Expo has grown tremendously, attracting more exhibitors than any other year since the expo was first held in 2008.
“At the first Arandis Expo in 2008, only two of the exhibitors were from this town. Fast forward four years and 14 local entrepreneurs showcased their goods and services at the 2011 Arandis Expo,” Danny Meyer, director of SMEs Compete, said.
Conceptualised, organised and hosted by SMEs Compete, this year saw 22 exhibitors from Arandis displaying products and services at the event.
Products and services on exhibit during the 2011 Arandis Expo included clothing, beauty, hair care and health products, ICT equipment, fresh vegetables, pot plants, catering supplies, processed meat and cellular phones.
In addition, the SME Business Unit of First National Bank and the Electoral Commission of Namibia ran information stands at the exposition.
The expo also featured an Entrepreneurs Roundtable and a talent contest. During the round table session, experienced business persons from Arandis shared challenges the businesses face in the town with the visitors.
During a tour of the expo, Meyer told the town’s Mayor, Daniel Muhuura and councillors that such market access events serves as a tool to grow the economy of smaller towns such as Arandis.
Referring to the town’s history at an entrepreneurs dialogue session, Meyer added that: “Not too long ago there was few enterprises in Arandis due to dependence on freebies and handouts from the local mine. That is why SMEs Compete decided to start working with local entrepreneurs. Four years later the results speak for themselves as you look around this expo.”
SMEs Compete provides business and employment creation support to small and medium enterprises. The firm was founded by Danny Meyer and Claudine Mouton in 2006.

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