Innovative funding solutions needed to unlock manufacturing growth

7th November 2022

Innovative funding solutions needed to unlock manufacturing growth

A new age of manufacturing is on Africa’s horizon and South Africa has the potential to become a world leader by challenging conventions and embracing responsible, tech-based industrial initiatives. A thriving manufacturing sector is a significant driver of economic development, particularly in emerging market economies.

It’s already the 4th largest sector by percentage of GDP, a major employer and a key driver of growth and innovation in SA’s business landscape.  Amidst market expectations of a 2% drop, South Africa’s manufacturing production has risen by 1.4% over the past year, thanks largely to the metals and transport subsectors.

“Manufacturing wields a multiplier effect on the economy. Improvements in manufacturing generate cascading benefits that ripple throughout the whole economy. Small-to-medium-sized manufacturing businesses – are the future innovators of South Africa,” says Tom Stuart, Chief Marketing Officer at Lulalend.

“However, growth and expansion in the manufacturing sector requires capital, and accessing sufficient funds has been a major challenge for many SMEs in the industry. In an increasingly volatile market, having reliable cash flow will be increasingly important for businesses to stay one step ahead," says Stuart.

Tech is playing an increasingly critical role in the manufacturing sector. Many businesses, having already integrated technologies like automation, machine learning and cloud computing, are already operating in Industry 4.0.

Others however are still in the process of embracing digitisation in various ways and may require capital to facilitate the upgrades that would secure their place in the 4IR. 

“The principles of sustainability and the circular economy - zero-waste, decarbonisation, and renewable-energy generation tend to be well accepted within the manufacturing sector”, Stuart notes “A shift into more sustainable manufacturing may entail different equipment or material requirements, and thus a need for additional capital."

Through Lulalend’s innovative approach to providing funding, manufacturing SMEs are able to quickly secure capital and achieve a healthy financial position at every stage of their growth, particularly as their operational needs change and grow. 

"Access to a reliable line of funding enables SMEs to plan for future growth with confidence, but also to overcome any immediate challenges they may face. We know that rising material costs, disrupted supply chains and ongoing load shedding are putting a huge strain on the financial health of SMEs at present.", Stuart says.

Lulalend's products are designed to meet the needs of small businesses, with flexible funding options that can be accessed quickly and easily. Enabling businesses to access the funds they need to grow in days versus a drawn-out process of weeks or months.

"Lulalend is currently offering SA's manufacturing businesses a repayment holiday until 11th January 2023. You can apply online for up to R5M of working capital, and if you do so before the end of November you won’t have to start repaying until next year.   The application process is fully online and paperless, we require no collateral and offer flexible repayment terms with no hidden fees" says Stuart.

"We see manufacturing SMEs as the bedrock of the nation's economy, and a springboard for innovation and opportunity. Our mission is to assist entrepreneurs in the manufacturing sector who are building the economy and contributing to employment in SA,” concludes Stuart.