I have always been in awe of the ability some South African entrepreneurs have to spot a gap in a market or industry, especially one which does not necessarily serve the majority of the rainbow nation. Over the past holiday my Facebook and Instagram feeds have been blowing up with check-in’s at wine farms in the Western Cape, boomerangs of people cheersing and photos of people celebrating life with a glass of wine in their hand (please note that I have also contributed to this notion). But not all people have the financial means to dress up, take a drive in an airconditioned car to a picturesque wine farm and spend the day documenting their experience on social media. This realisation gave rise to Lindile Ndzaba’s idea to change the wine narrative in such a way that all citizens can enjoy, indulge and celebrate a product which is proudly South African.
Bringing wine to the community
Lindile had spent 10 years in the hospitality industry when he decided to take a leap of faith and start his own business. Residing in Khayelitsha, a partial informal township on the outskirts of Cape Town, Ndzaba realised that there is a gap in the wine market which he can fill. Khayelitsha’s community, according to Lindile, had a need for affordable and good, high quality wines. Thanks to Lindile, wine consumers in Khayelitsha no longer have to travel to wine farms to enjoy good wine anymore as Khayelitsha’s Finest Wine’s (KFW) brings the wine to the community.
Lindile fulfills many roles in his business, from the running of operations to product research, stock control, packaging, sales, distribution, marketing and advertising. He explains that, “I steer my own ship and when it is broken- I fix it myself”. KFW is very unique as they source small batches of high-quality wines from different wine farms. Their wines are currently produced by The Fledge and Co in Calitzdorp. According to Lindile, The Fledge and Co produces a great product as they farm with integrity.
Fighting unemployment one bottle at a time
The vision of KFW is to see the townships develop and have their own resources to produce products without outsourcing. Not only does Lindile aim to grow his business internationally, he also wants to encourage the community to work together and to further the mindset of “supporting local brands.” Lindile acknowledges the potential the community of Khayelitsha has, and tries to inspire the community to “not sit back” and to be proactive despite the lack of resources they are faced with. Lindile believes that growth is possible and that KFW is on the road to success. He aims to continually provide jobs and, in essence, fight unemployment in the community of Khayelitsha.
Despite the fact that it is extremely easy to purchase products from big corporations, as well as following the societal patterns, I am of the opinion that it is cardinal to support local brands and give grassroot entrepreneurs the chance to truly change their communities. Be conscious when purchasing everyday products, as each product you buy might enhance the life of some or, as with KFW, support a larger movement for change. Change which might reconstruct certain narratives and contribute to the growth of our rainbow nation.