Reflecting its commitment to helping South African SMMEs (small, medium and micro enterprises) to grow and prosper, Absa will once again host South Africa’s largest and longest standing event aimed at connecting local suppliers to corporate supply chains.

Now in its 12th year, the annual Absa Enterprise and Supplier Development Expo takes place on 12 and 13 September 2023 in Midrand, Gauteng. More than 2 000 attendees are expected to attend the open day on 13 September 2023. This powerful gathering of buyers and suppliers will offer small businesses a massive boost in the form of new connections and skills development. Visitors will be able to network and browse the exhibition as well as attend a series of powerful masterclasses. The topics that will be covered in these workshops include accessing funding, using social media to get leads, and artificial intelligence (AI) for SMMEs.

The Absa ESD Expo will showcase host suppliers, service providers and ESD partners, among others. The expo forms part of the annual Absa Smart Supplier Conference, which runs alongside this year’s 17th annual Smart Procurement World Indaba.

The Absa Smart Supplier Conference is geared towards preparing suppliers to be ready for business by giving them technical support and enabling them to access the market through buyer-meet-seller platforms. Small businesses are the backbone of South Africa’s economy, employing around 60% of the workforce and making a substantial contribution to the GDP. The number of small businesses in South Africa is rising, and with the right support, they can make an even greater impact on the country’s economy and employment rate.

According to the “State of Small Business in South Africa” report compiled by research institution Trade & Industrial Policies Strategies (TIPS), the number of small formal businesses in South Africa reached 710 000 in 2022, increasing from 680 000 in 2019 and 590 000 in 2010. However, SMMEs in South Africa still struggle to access markets and get sustainable contracts.

At the Absa Smart Supplier Conference, senior buyers will outline the various processes that are essential to access their markets. Business experts will be available at an SMME Helpdesk to answer pressing questions and help small businesses to address challenges and identify opportunities. The event also features an SMME Clinic offering training and networking assistance. Supplier Matchup sessions will give SMMEs a chance for one-on-one interactions in which to ask buyers questions about their processes and to make themselves known. The buyers will benefit, too, by having the opportunity to build their base of competent, reliable SMME suppliers.

“It is critical, not just for SMMEs but for the country, that the needs of entrepreneurs and small business owners are met. They must be empowered to achieve their full potential as drivers of inclusive economic growth and development and as employers who can help to address South Africa’s dire unemployment rate,” comments Smart Procurement chief operating officer Debbie Tagg.

The 2023 Smart Procurement World Indaba, the Absa ESD Expo and Absa Smart Supplier Conference take place on 12 and 13 September 2023 at Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, Gauteng.

For more information and booking details, visit: http://spw.uxi.re/0Q2sv

For more information, contact: 0861 334 326



Smart Procurement World (SPW) is the largest professional development event for procurement and inbound supply chain, supported and endorsed by industry professional bodies. SPW also achieves professional development for procurement and supply chain professionals while achieving economic development objectives in each region through enterprise, supplier development linking small business to supply chain.


Contact info@smartprocurementworld.com for event inquiries.

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