• Lead Covid-19

South African Business Assistance Pillar (24/04)

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

Here is the latest update from the Business Assistance (COBRA) Pillar.

We have achieved something phenomenal in the last 30 days and this is just the beginning of the COBRA story.

I thought I would list some of the highlights as we celebrate our first month.

We have reached over 500 Webinar participants and have various enterprises under discussion in the COBRA process: many accessing our knowledge base and expert network; several in business rescue stages (preliminary and underway); several in funding discussions.  Our MIS is being constructed, so we should have a clear view of this shortly and can report progress weekly.  

Our COBRA enabling partners now include:

  1. IQbusiness (YPO)

  2. Schindlers Attorneys

  3. Engaged Business Turnaround

  4. Microsoft

  5. YPO Africa Region (880 CEOs)

  6. ORT SA

  7. Envision Advisory Services

  8. Sirdar Group (YPO)

  9. Adept Advisory (YPO)

  10. Agility

  11. Crest Capital

  12. Singular Group (YPO)

  13. Africa Forensics & Cyber (subsidiary of YPO)

More Partners will follow ... we have at least 5 more in process.

This week we have seen a significant step forward in the COBRA funders and investor network.  At this stage, this now includes:

  1. RMB Ventures (Private Equity & M&A)

  2. Neu Capital Africa (Marketplace, Deal Room, connecting companies with investors)

  3. Komen Capital (Marketing, Technology, Education)

  4. African Capital Investments (potential buyside, sell-side and funding)

  5. Invest Africa (Africa-focused investor network)

  6. Capitalworks Investment Partners (Private equity and investor network focussing in Sub-Saharan Africa).

10 YPO members have volunteered to mentor business leaders in distress.  We are working to expand this network of COBRA "Charmers" with YPO members and non-execs in South Africa.

COBRA India has been initiated by the Jagriti Yatra social enterprise (supported by Coca Cola, Dell, Google and Cairn with discussions underway with YPO in the region).  They are leveraging our approach to support enterprises all over India during their Lockdown and economic crisis. 

COBRA Kenya is under development (led by YPO East Africa) to leverage the COBRA approach and replicate the positive impact as part of measures to address their economic crisis.

Our Webinars are moving into prime position as the source of knowledge and information for businesses in the epicentre of the economic crisis.  The programme of legal and business rescue sessions was augmented by this week's highlights in the Hospitality sector and latest research from Singular Group (the leading research on the SA crisis) .  Our Webinars are set to expand to board governance; negotiating skills, psychosocial support; team leadership; labour matters and much more.   

We are engaging with all the banks, plus BASA; Business for SA; SA Future Trust; Sukuma Fund; Solidarity Fund, BLSA, BUSA, BBC, RMI, CEO Initiative, DTI, DBSA and others.  Their acknowledgement of COBRA has been slow, although this will come once they realise the critical mass and substance we have built.

COBRA is being registered as a not-for-profit to establish the Board and governance framework under the stewardship of Carl Bates (YPO Jo’burg) and Arnie Basserabie (YPO Gold).

The economic tsunami is building and the Business Assistance Pillar (COBRA) is leading our business community to high ground!

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