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Tuesday, 14 March 2017 07:00

Alumni Spotlight | Meet Kumaran Padayachee from Spartan

Kumaran Padayachee, part of the Endeavor South Africa Alumni Programme, runs Spartan – an SME financing company based in Johannesburg. Endeavor South Africa contacted him to discuss his entrepreneurial and business journey since he became an alumnus.

1. How did your time with Endeavor help you as an entrepreneur?

We got involved with Endeavor approximately 10 years ago and Endeavor played a role in encouraging us to think bigger, more strategically and more focussed.

2. What has your entrepreneurial path been like since you graduated from Endeavor South Africa?

A few years ago we effected a strategic change at Spartan by moving away from corporate and public sector target markets – to being 100% focussed on the SME and entrepreneur target market. We expanded our offering from merely technology financing – to financing that backs entrepreneurs with growth finance, asset finance and bridging finance. We created a scalable distribution with nearly 90 partners, to reach SMEs and entrepreneurs nationally.

3. Mentoring is at the heart of Endeavor’s philosophy. In your view, why is it important for seasoned entrepreneurs to mentor upcoming entrepreneurs?

The obvious beneficiary is the mentee and their business that gets to accelerate their development and growth based on the mentor’s guidance, insights and experience. The catalytic effect of those seeds can bear fruit in ways hard to determine/ acknowledge at the outset.

The not-so-obvious beneficiary is the mentor themselves, as they either get reminded of important lessons they have forgotten along the way or gain fresh/ new perspective whilst mentoring someone.

4. What is the most rewarding part of being an entrepreneur?

The self-deterministic nature of an entrepreneurial path is most fulfilling. To have a dream and have the opportunity pursue that dream is an exciting intellectual and emotional challenge.

5. What motivates you to get out of bed every morning?

The joy of pursuing my dreams and commitment to my family, to our people, to our clients.

6. Do you have any interesting news to share with us?

We recently expanded our offering from merely financing technology - to financing that backs entrepreneurs with growth finance, asset finance and bridging finance. As an SME financier, our expansion into the Alternative Finance arena holds exciting prospects both for Spartan and the SME market.

7. Do you have any encouraging words to share with entrepreneurs wanting to join Endeavor South Africa?

My advice is to trust Endeavor’s people, trust their process and trust their ecosystem. Their people are passionate and committed to your success. The Endeavor selection process garners valuable insights for you - even if you are not ultimately selected.

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