For the first time in ten years, Wesgro’s Investment Promotion Unit (IPU) has helped secure over R3 billion of committed investments in the Cape in just one financial year.
The IPU consists of the Investment Promotion team (IP) and the Agribusiness Investment Unit (AIU), which is funded by the Western Cape Department of Agriculture. Wesgro receives its investment promotion mandate from the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape Government.
The total value of investments facilitated in the 2017/18 financial year amounted to over R3 billion, with R2,296 billion secured by the IP team and R756 million secured by the AIU.
The investments will enable the creation of more than 2 400 direct jobs over the next 5 years.
This is an increase from the previous year, with the IP team securing R2.86 billion in committed investment in the 2016/17 financial year, facilitating the creation of 1,106 jobs.
Wesgro’s formalised collaboration with GreenCape, which aims to attract investment into the Western Cape’s green economy has also started to bear fruit. The shared resource has helped secure committed investments in the green economy amounting to R2.5 billion in 2017/18, with R1.25 billion contributing to the overall success of the R3 billion committed investments secured by the IPU team. The sharing of this allocation is done in terms of the agreement with GreenCape.
The committed investments in the green economy will support the creation of more than 650 new direct jobs, in a collective effort between the two organisations.
Another key contributor to the successes has been the collaborative relationship with the newly launched InvestSA One Stop Shop, which has assisted in driving an enhanced facilitation experience for new and established investors in the Cape. The One Stop Shop is operated by Wesgro, the Western Cape Government and the Department of Trade and Industry.
The achievement in the 2017/18 financial year is attributed to a number of activities embarked on by the IPU and AIU teams to promote investment. These included:
- Undertaking outward investment promotion missions to more than 20 international markets to promote the Western Cape
- Conducting meetings with more than 700 businesses, financiers and service providers
- Hosting more than 65 inward business delegations from across the globe
- Undertaking more than 40 meetings with District and Local Municipalities to enhance municipal investment readiness and promote economic growth across the entire Cape
- Meeting with more than 35 Consulates and Embassies to enhance bilateral relationships
- Meeting with more than 55 national ministries and state owned entities to ensure collaboration in supporting inbound investment to the Cape
The unit has also regularly engaged with Sector Development Agencies across the province – promoting collaboration and cross-selling of opportunities within the Cape.
Acknowledging the IP Unit’s outstanding results, the Leader of French Tech South Africa, and CEO of Methys, Christophe Viarnaud commented: “Wesgro is an integral part of the success of the Western Cape economy in attracting the most innovative and successful businesses. Their solution driven philosophy, responsiveness and quality of engagement has been a key asset for the French Tech community to invest, grow and create jobs in the Cape over the past few years. We look forward to a bright future by continuing to work our partnership model with Wesgro and intensifying our efforts.”
Looking ahead, the team will be taking active steps to ensure the successful collaborative relationship with InvestSA One Stop Shop – with the IP unit scheduled to operate from their offices in April. Similarly, a new strategic approach will be adopted by the business retention and expansion unit, which will be aimed at ensuring that Wesgro clients receive the benefit of the full range of Wesgro support services across all key pillars of the agency’s operational mandate.
Commending the team on their achievement, Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris said: “This record achievement is due to a dedicated team of staff members at Wesgro waking up each and every day with a single goal in mind: attracting more investment into the Cape, that will help grow the economy and create jobs for our residents. Through a focussed sector approach, strategic missions to key markets and a collaborative model of working together with all levels of government, our IP team has proven that investment can be attracted into our province and country, even during tough economic times. Our focus will now be on growing this investment total even further in the next financial year, which commenced this week.”
Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, commented: “These figures show the tremendous work Wesgro and the Western Cape Government have put into marketing the province as a world class destination to do business. By securing these investments, we have been able to create jobs for nearly 2500 people, and send out a clear message that the Western Cape is open for business. We also welcome the focus on investing in the green sector, as this contributes to building a resilient economy that can withstand the shocks associated with climate change, and water and energy scarcities.”
Applauding the team on this record year, the Executive Mayor of the City of Cape Town, Patricia de Lille, commented: “As the City of Cape Town we are really pleased by these numbers. These numbers are a testament of the great working relationship between the City, as a local government entity, Wesgro and the private sector in promoting trade and growing Cape Town’s economy.
We are determined to let the world know that Cape Town is open for business, so that businesses can invest in our City and create jobs for our people.”
Press Release: Wesgro