Analysis of start-up challenges of African immigrant-owned businesses in selected craft markets in Cape Town

26 Jun 2017

Even though the arts and craft industry is perceived to be a significant contributor to the socio-economic development of South Africa, the plight of immigrant owed businesses that dominate this sector has been largely neglected in policy and support initiatives over the past decades. This paper aims to contribute to the inclusion debate, by examining the factors that inhibit the start-up of African immigrant-owned craft businesses in selected craft markets in the Cape Town area. A quantitative approach to data collection and analysis was adopted with snowballing as the sampling technique. Questionnaires were administered to 122 African immigrant entrepreneurs. The quantitative data was analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS 23). The findings indicated that limited access to bank loans, limited space, and high rental costs were the major start-up challenges. Other concerns included the relatively very short-stay permits issued by the Department of Home Affairs to immigrant entrepreneurs, the problem of complying with taxation regulations in South Africa, and the difficulty of communicating in Afrikaans and Xhosa were not perceived as start-up challenges. Recommendations were made to African immigrant entrepreneurs and selected municipal managers aimed at dealing with the start-up challenges faced by African immigrant-owned businesses.