Mbulelo Mpofu, Showbiz Reporter
BRANDON Ndebele, a young Zimbabwean based in South Africa is living his dream after establishing a food joint last weekend.
Situated at the Randview Shopping Centre in Randburg, The Takeaway Plug offers a wide range of food and liquor.
Their menu which includes bunny chows, French fries, burgers, boerewors, ribs and wings opened its doors to the public last Saturday.
Speaking to Chronicle Showbiz, the 21-year-old who hails from Emakhandeni suburb in Bulawayo, said he established the food joint to shorten the distance that people would walk to access fast food.
“One day, I went to a place called Randview Shopping Centre and realised that the centre specialised in African food, but none of the shops in the food court sold South African favourites such as the popular kota. So, I saw a business opportunity and exploited it.
“There’s a call centre in the area and the youth that work there have to walk for about a kilometre just to buy their favourite food.
I then decided to make it easy for them and now, they can get their food 100 metres from their workplace,” said Ndebele.
At 21, many will still be at school chasing certificates and Ndebele is grateful for the support that he got to set up shop.
“I’d like to give credit and gratitude to multi-business owner Mr Bakani Ngulani and my best friend Ryan Mkhize for their support. Mr Ngulani helped me financially while Ryan helped me set up everything inside the shop,” he said.
Currently, the joint employs three people and the owner hopes to recruit more as time goes on.
Ndebele hopes for better fortunes and sees The Takeaway Plug as a huge improvement from his previous business venture; selling ice cream.
“The Takeaway Plug got off on a positive note and things seem to be falling in place as people flocked in for the grand opening on Saturday.
Meeting comedian and actor Alfred Ntombela must have been the charm for me as I still carry his words of wisdom.
“I met him last week when I was on my way to order stock and we had a chat. He gave me sound entrepreneurial advice,” said Ndebele.
The young entrepreneur who relocated to South Africa eight years ago shared advice to up-and-coming entrepreneurs, citing patience and networking as key.
“Being a young entrepreneur is hard as there’s peer pressure and the possibility of being pompous. Establishing a company takes time and I would advise my peers to be patient and also consider networking as it’s a key part of growing your contacts,” he said. – @eMKlass_49