"I’m operating at a higher level now."
Lijeng Mokoatle believes in giving credit where it is due. And when she speaks of her relationship with Barloworld Siyakhula, she is effusive in her praise.
“I can’t compare it with anything I’ve ever experienced in business” she gushes. “They’ve been a life-saver!”
The managing director of Lettam Building and Civils, a construction company which she founded in 2010, recalls an extremely difficult period in which her clients were not paying on time. The resulting pressure on cash flow threatened the very survival of the business.
When Barloworld Siyakhula stepped in with an offer to provide bridging finance, Lijeng says it gave Lettam a new lease on life, enabling her to continue trading in a tough market environment. And by giving her a grace period of one year before she had to begin making repayment, Siyakhula made it easier for her to stay focused on growing the business, she says.
“No bank would ever do that for you!” she claims.
In addition to helping with working capital finance, Siyakhula also provides Lettam with preferential rates on the capital equipment it hires and purchases from Barloworld. The cost savings help the company remain competitive in an industry where margins can make or break a business.
Lijeng recently completed Siyakhula’s Captains of Industry Programme, an initiative aimed at fostering world-class entrepreneurship and business leadership within Barloworld’s value chain. Over the course of several months, she underwent training in finance, strategy and other topics key to mastering business in a competitive marketplace. Lijeng says that she can already see results in the way she now runs her company.“It was an amazing experience that has really strengthened me as a businessperson,” she says. “I’m already operating at a much higher level than I was before.”