Home Lifestyle WATCH: Pernod Ricard raises the spirits of local artisans with R29.7 million...

WATCH: Pernod Ricard raises the spirits of local artisans with R29.7 million investment

Furniture maker Mthutheuzeli Khanhyile.

The gift that keeps giving

Last year, two of the stand-out furniture makers from the Phakamisa iSpirit campaign went on to start their own businesses. Both Hosea Matlou and Sandile Tsulo came from underprivileged backgrounds and through the campaign have been able to create businesses that changed their lives.

“Before I partnered with Phakamisa ispirit, my mother lived in an RDP house with 9 orphan children. I couldn’t afford equipment and my dreams of being a business owner seemed out of reach. Since becoming part of Pernod Ricard’s Phakamisa iSpirit initiative, I have managed to help build my mother a home, purchased administration and data capturing equipment and have taken some big steps toward achieving my goals,” says Tsulo.

This year Pernod Ricard has eight makers enrolled into the programme, three of whom are female. These exceptionally talented women have managed to shine in a very male-dominated space. As such, we felt it was our duty to give them a platform where they could develop their skills and get access to opportunities that may otherwise be denied to them.” says Leymarie.

Furniture maker Sibongile Ncumalo

We can all contribute:

The campaign is also partially funded by ordinary South Africans who help by purchasing a bottle from one of the participating brands – Ballantine’s Finest, Absolut Vodka, Beefeater London Dry gin, and Chivas Regal 12YO – each presented in unique packaging – of which R5 from every bottle sold will go towards uplifting local makers. To date, more than R2 million has gone directly toward helping the artisans and by the end of 2023, the campaign aims to have thirty makers enrolled.

A recent study by global consultancy firm Mckinsey found that while Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises in South Africa account for more than 98% of businesses and employ between 50 and 60% of the country’s workforce across all sectors, they are also the most vulnerable to economic downturns.

Reducing the current official unemployment rate, which currently sits at 33.9%, requires other players in the South African economy to help support SMMEs where they can. This is what the Phakamisa iSpirit campaign hopes to achieve.

All in good fun:

Another way that South Africans help lift spirits is through the Phakamisa iSpirit Millionaire Gameshow. Hosted by the hilarious Mpho Popps, this gameshow runs weekly on eTV from the 26th of November 2022 – the 31st of December 2022 and see participants compete for R4 million in cash and prizes including a R1 million grand prize.

Contestants will also get the chance to win up R1.2million in furniture made by the makers themselves and R250k in mystery travel prizes.

Leymarie concludes, “At Pernod Ricard, our core purpose is to work together to create conditions for sustainable growth – the kind that respects our environment and our communities and that is collectively profitable for all our stakeholders: employees, shareholders, customers, consumers, and citizens.

We are also the ambassadors of conviviality and try to spread that in everything that we do. Phakamisa iSpirit, and the many arms it has grown since we began, perfectly encapsulate that for us. Hopefully, it does for the rest of South Africa too.”

Visit www.i-spirit.co.za to learn more about the Phakamisa iSpirit festive gifting campaign.