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CDI Masterclass Series helps business owners create a roadmap to recovery

Friday, 29 May 2020  
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With the COVID-19 crisis having created an unprecedented moment in our lifetime – and a massive impact on business locally and globally – the CDI recently initiated a series of online Masterclasses to help craft and design SMMEs to start creating a path towards recovery and improved sustainability.

This Masterclass Series commenced on 21 May, and has been made possible thanks to the support of the City of Cape Town. The places for each webinar were fully booked in a short space of time.

“I am very proud of our strategic business partners like the CDI for their dedication and hard work in assisting a vital facet of our economy – the SMMEs. As a City, we take our commitment to the economy seriously, and we have been working with SMMEs and partner organisations for many years to ensure that this critical part of the economy thrives. SMMEs are lifeblood of our economy,” said James Vos, Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management.

“We know that most of the small businesses we work with are asking: ‘Where to from here? What is my next step?’. We designed this Masterclass Series as a way for business owners to think through some critical issues guided by skilled facilitators with specific technical expertise. The series aims
to help business owners to create a holistic road map to recovery,” says Erica Elk, Group CEO of the CDI.

The series covers seven thematic areas and includes specifically designed online sessions and one-on-one support. It ends in June. Each session is limited to 25 business owners to maximise the opportunity for engagement, and each session is being hosted by a highly respected expert who signed on to help CDI give the best support possible.

“The design of the series takes a holistic approach, starting with the owner as the leader of a team and their personal wellbeing and energy; before following on with sessions that cover managing staff, financial recovery, business strategy, and marketing. It also includes resources, templates, pre- and post-webinar work, and one-on-one support,” Elk adds.

Elk says that the CDI has been hosting a number of webinars over the lockdown to help SMMEs as they face the COVID-19 challenge, and that the demand is high for these.

“Since the lockdown, the CDI has really ramped up its online offering with the launch of its Online Learning Platform ( which offers 14 free business modules, and targeted webinars around specific COVID-19 related challenges. We fully understand that business owners now more than ever need support, and we are planning on scaling up our online offering with more webinars in the coming weeks.”

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