Thirteen small- and a medium-sized historically disadvantaged enterprises from Limpopo have received a boost with the Limpopo High Flyers initiative piloted by SATSA and Limpopo Tourism.
This is the third such initiative conducted by SATSA, which included a project with Gauteng Tourism Authority in 2016 and South African Tourism in 2017 which saw 90 Hidden Gems being developed and introduced to SATSA trade.
“The learnings from these previous pilots helped us to perfect the process for future similar initiatives, says SATSA COO Hannelie du Toit.
The project, launched in December 2017, was aimed at injecting new energy in the tourism sector, introducing diversity and variety and ultimately catering to the needs of the tourists who are looking for unique and authentic experiences.
“The Limpopo High Flyers Market Access Programme was developed to identify relevant provincial products, assist them with their tourism and marketing development needs and act as an intermediate marketplace where these carefully selected and prepared emerging product were introduced to large and established trade in an environment that allows for informed discussions and business deals,” says Du Toit.
This pilot followed a graduated selection process, providing learning and mentorship, route development, SATSA membership, marketing collateral development, Indaba attendance on the SATSA stand and direct connections with buyers through site visits.
“Of a total of 25 registrations, we eventually selected 13 products to participate in the Limpopo High Flyers initiative. These products underwent a day-and-a-half of intense training, two months of mentorship, and were added to a professional Limpopo High Flyers website, as well as marketing collateral that was developed to showcase their offering.
Additionally, the products were featured on SATSA’s website, on the SATSA stand at Indaba and featured in a four-day trade visit with hosted buyers. Said Nikki Thaver, Southern African 360 Product Development Manager, who joined the visit: “It was indeed an honour for us at Southern Africa 360 to be part of this ground-breaking Fam Trip. It was an extensive and exciting four-day itinerary which, along with several accommodation site inspections, included a rock art excursion, spa treatments, an evening in a traditional village homestay, art and crafts, a visit to Modjadjiskloof and an afternoon game drive on an Open Safari Vehicle in the Kruger National Park.”
All Limpopo High Flyers products have also invited to join SATSA and to date five have already completed their applications and are SATSA members.
According to all participants, both product and trade, the hosted buyers’ visit was a huge success, and five of the Limpopo High Flyer products have already been included in trade packages as a result.
• Kone Village
• Makgabeng Lodge
• TAHS-SA Homestay
• Nahakwe Lodge
• Khalanga Safaris
“The initiative was a resounding success and now that we have perfected the pilot, we will be in a position to roll out the same successful recipe in other destinations, bringing interesting new product to market,” concludes Du Toit.