Following the news of the passing away of pioneering entrepreneur and businessman, Dr Richard Maponya, at the age of 99 years on Monday morning, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Ebrahim Patel, sent his Ministry’s condolences to his family.
Dr Richard Maponya received the first Lifetime Achievement Award at the inaugural South African Premier Business Awards in March 2013 hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti), Proudly South African and Brand South Africa.
Dr Maponya was recognised for his contribution to the development of South African business and his contribution to the community during his lifetime.
He leaves behind a legacy that needs to be treasured and built on for the success of black businesses.
Dr Maponya was a pioneer in the development of township enterprises and the growth of black business. He contributed to the development of a voice for black entrepreneurs and was involved in a number of community initiatives.
The award presented by the dti recognises business excellence and honours enterprises which promote innovation, job creation, good business ethics and quality, they are designed to showcase the best that South Africa has to offer in terms of businesses, products and services.
‘Dr Maponya inspired the growth of black-owned enterprises’
Among his many business ventures is the Maponya Mall in Pimville, Soweto.
The democratic government after 1994 took a number of steps to promote the development of black-owned enterprises and to nurture young entrepreneurs.
Minister Patel said that Dr Maponya’s efforts to build successful enterprises left a legacy that should inspire a new generation of business leaders that will contribute in transforming the economy of this country.
“Dr Maponya remained active for many years after he stepped down from running his businesses. He will be missed in the community and business world and we extend our condolences to his family and loved ones,” says Minister Patel.
“In the next year, we are stepping up efforts to deepen economic inclusion, particularly for young people, workers and local communities.”