Chairperson: Lauren Vlaming (Olivewood Private Estate & Golf Club)
The Operations and Marketing Committee deals with the operational and day-to-day running of the business. All business-related functions such as Finance, HR, Communications, Membership and the overall Office management of Chamber, as well as related activities, is dealt with under this committee.
This committee also takes care of all Chamber social events such as Chamber Breakfasts, the Annual Dinner, Chamber Golf Days, Networking events and workshops.
This committee also ensures that Chamber members are kept abreast of all chamber related news, through the weekly newsletter called “Snapshots”, our Social Media pages, as well as the quarterly glossy Business Hi-Lite Magazine.
Chairperson: Annemarie Fish
For Business and Industry to function and make a profit, it has to exist within an enabling environment within which businesses thrive. This committee focuses on ensuring that businesses in the Border-Kei Region have a reliable electricity supply, safe and good quality water supply, decent roads on which to travel and an effective rail infrastructure.
This committee was instrumental in facilitating the widening and upgrade of Settlersway on the Wesbank, from the airport up to the Steve Biko Bridge. A separate Water Focus Forum subcommittee has been established to deal specifically with water and to keep a close eye on the dam levels and the water situation in the BCMM region.
Chairperson: Rory Haschick (ECDC)
The purpose of the committee is to report on, and deal with matters relating to business in the Border-Kei Region and matters raised by members of the Chamber in the following sectors:- Imports and Exports; Inward foreign and local direct Investment; Retail, SMME development, Finance and Banking, Manufacturing as well as support infrastructure such as Aviation, Cargo, Port activities, roadfreight, rail, telecommunications, Eskom, Municipal services, as well as public transport in the Border-Kei region. Critical data is collated around foot traffic at shopping centres, including economic updates on the economy of South Africa. This committee is also tasked with the implementation of the Business Intelligence Hub, as well as the establishment of an Airlift Sub-committee.
THE KOMANI CHAPTER
Chairperson: Jacques van Zyl
The Komani Chapter of the Chamber, looks after the interests of our Komani members and drives initiatives for the benefit of the Komani members. The committee is led by Lisle Clarke with the assistance of the Komani Operations Manager, Adre’ Gainsford-Bartis. The Komani Committee has several subcommittees, namely the Industrialists, Safety & Security, CSI, SMME, Finance and Membership Committees, as well as the Adopt-a-School project.
TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION COMMITTEE
Chairperson: Dr Ayanda Madyibi (ECSECC)
The Border-Kei Chamber of Business’s (BKCOB) most recent committee is the Technology and Innovation committee, made up of BCMM ICT department, ECSECC and Business. The world is changing fast and we have to stay abreast with technological advancements and innovative ideas. This committee focuses on exploring what technological advances have been made, and to see how we leverage on these advancements and prepare our city for it. Hydro power, climate change, tech hubs, Electromobility, robotics, AI, 4IR and the Smart City strategy falls under this committee.
Chairperson: Lavinia Shaw (Eastern Cape Parks & Tourism Agency)
This committee, is a partnership between the Chamber Tourism Members, BCMM Tourism and Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency (ECPTA) and the Buffalo City Development Agency (BCMDA)
Tourism, in all its forms, plays a very important role in boosting the economy of a region. Whether it be sports Tourism, leisure tourism, religious tourism, conferences and events, cruise tourism, etc. all these events, bring additional foot traffic into a region, in terms of players, officials, spectators, etc.
This committee is also tasked with the development of tourism packages or tourist routes for the leisure market and the promotion of Tourism and Tourist Attractions in our region. Projects done in the past, are the 101 things to do in the BCMM district, the new story boards around the city, Walking tours as well as a Tourism EXPO.
CURRENT PROJECT:- SEWER SPILL AT THE NAHOON BEACH
EMPLOYMENT RELATIONS & EDUCATION FORUM
Chairperson: Kim Smallie (Automotive Academy)
The Employment Relations and Education Forum (EREF) serves as a consultative and advisory forum to members and external stakeholders regarding all matters pertaining to employment relations & Education within the Border-Kei Region. This committee is made up of the Dept of Employment and Labour, business and Educational Institutions.
The aim of the committee is to discuss and advise on initiatives to respond to the challenges of employment relations in the Border-Kei Care.
Key focus points include:
- Skills and Human Resource Development
- Talent Management
- Organisational Development
- Employee relations inclusive of all labour legislation.
- Engaging with and lobbying external stakeholders.
- The Future of Work Conference
SPORTS & FACILITIES MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE
Chairperson: Zakhe Madala (Simo Solutions )
The Sports and Facilities Management committee is a partnership between the various sporting codes, BCMM Sports Council, DSRAC and the Sports and Recreation Directorate in BCMM. Born out of the desire to position East London as a sporting Mecca, this committee actively tries to attract tournaments, galas and matches into the BCMM region, in order to boost and stimulate economic activity. However, this cannot be done unless the sporting facilities are of a certain standard.
CURRENT PROJECTS –
- Getting Ironman 70.3 back for our city
- The Refurbishment of the Orient Complex
- Lobbying for the Athletics Stadium to be returned back to the people of this city.
SAFETY & SECURITY COMMITTEE
Chairperson: Cobus Potgieter (MSCHoldings)
This committee is a partnership between SAPS, private sector security and business against crime. Born out of the looting in KZN, this committee actively seeks to position East London as a safer city to live, work and play in.
- Creation of a District Operations Command Centre
- Regular online Virtual Safety Summits with subject matter experts.
CHAMBER WOMEN’S FORUM
Chairperson: Bonnie Currin (Captain – Current Consulting)
On the 8th of March 2022, International Women’s Day, BKCOB established the first-ever women focussed committee, The Chamber Women’s Forum.
The purpose of this committee is to be a Voice and Change Agent for Women in the mainstream Economy of the Border-Kei region.
The key focus areas of the committee is to create and facilitate: –
- Learning & Development, by inviting subject matter experts on topical issues, to speak at the monthly Women’s Connect sessions.
- Opportunities to connect with other like-minded women, to grow and develop.
- Access to local and global markets through the Women in Trade Export Readiness Programme in partnership with Trade Forward Southern Africa (TFSA) & Future Females, fully funded by the UK Government.
- Advocacy for the inclusion of Women businesses in previously male dominated sectors as well as for preferential procurement.
- Networking opportunities & strategic linkages through the monthly Women’s Connect Session.
- The recognition of women at the annual Women’s Month Event in August each year.
- A data base of Women business owners with the aim of supporting women business owners.
CURRENT PROJECT:- WOMEN IN TRADE EXPORT READINESS PROGRAMME.
THE GOOD DEEDS COMMITTEE
Chairperson: Caron Troskie (Link FM Presenter )
The purpose of the Good Deeds Committee is to provide a consultative and advisory forum to members and external stakeholders regarding all matters pertaining to corporate social relations and investment within the Border-Kei Region as well as to assist in the development and sustainability of social entrepreneurs in the NGO/NPO/PBO sector.
The purpose of the Good Deeds Committee, is to facilitate:-
- Skills development within the sector, through an NGO Development and Mentorship Programme in partnership with the University of Fort Hare.
- Be a resource pool for companies, to fulfil their Corporate Social Investment and Corporate Social Responsibility
- Calls to action during disaster response and recovery, on an ad hoc, case-by-case basis during crisis periods.
- Engaging with and lobbying external stakeholders for support and funding to fulfil the many needs within the NGO/NPO sector.
CURRENT PROJECTS: – 8-Month Business Development Programme in partnership with the University of Fort Hare.
WASTE & ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE (WEMAC)
Chairperson: Wela Brukwe
The Waste & Environmental Management committee is a partnership between the BCMDA, BCMM Solid Waste Department and Waste Entrepreneurs. The partnership was sealed with the signing of an MOU in May 2022, around the Cleaning and Greening programme.
This committee successfully launched two Buy-Back Centres to date and have managed to divert more than 310 tons of waste from landfill sites.
CURRENT PROJECTS: – Establishment of additional Buy – Back Centres
CHAMBER YOUTH DESK
Watch this space as the Chamber crafts an effective Youth Employment and Youth Entrepreneurship Programme.