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Thursday, August 11, 2022


KZN Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs partners with I heart Market to strengthen small businesses in Durban.

The Market takes place on the first Saturday of the month at the Moses Mabhida Stadium Lawns, with the next one on September 3, 2022, from 08h30 to 14h00.

In a bold move to help elevate and strengthen small businesses in the Durban region, the Department of Economic Development has partnered with the much-loved and highly successful craft and artisanal I heart Market for the next few months.

“We have entered into a relationship with the Department of Economic Development to support local small businesses,” explains owner and manager of the Market, Anna Savage. “The I heart Market has worked with them previously when managing the Sustainability Village for Africa Tourism Indaba.”

The Department of Economic Development has as one of its roles to identify and create opportunities for small businesses in KZN – doing this through mentorship, entrepreneurial workshops and providing business opportunities for them.

“As the I heart Market forms a small business hub that focuses on providing a platform for local businesses, it is an ideal place to position these small businesses within an established space that has a captive consumer market,” says Savage.

"We began the Market in 2008 as we noticed a gap in retail for small creative businesses,” she adds. “We have been able to provide a platform for businesses to engage with an “audience” without having the entry costs for set-up, infrastructure, rentals, and utilities that one would need for a formal store. We became a place where businesses could start with small set up cost, test their products in a safe space on their audience, and gain valuable feedback."

(Above: Makers Phumzile Zama and Nolwazi Zama have a business at the market - Polka dot Coco - this has been made possible through the support of the KZN Department of Economic Development)

The Department will be supporting 25 vendors. With a focus on fashion brands, but also covering jewellery designers, home decor, accessories and food products.

“The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development, Tourism, and Environmental Affairs recognises the creative industry as part of the value chain that adds value to the economy,” says Angel Mkhethie Sibisi, the Department Spokesperson. “Our non-negotiable commitment to developing and transforming the economy through the empowerment of small businesses to boost the economy and improve the quality of life remains a primary objective for us. We will continue to strengthen our interventions by supporting SMMEs and Co-Operatives as part of the Clothing and Textile Pillar.”

"With this amazing support, we can help more small businesses, especially those businesses that were affected by COVID in the last few years, and are excited about the opportunities to support these businesses to grow and thrive!"

Once again, the I heart Market will offer a variety of hand-crafted and artisanal fare from clothing, d├ęcor, furnishings, jewellery, leather accessories, and homeware to delicious food and refreshments.

The Market takes place on the first Saturday of the month at the Moses Mabhida Stadium Lawns, with the next one on September 3, 2022, from 08h30 to 14h00. (Free Entrance and Dogs allowed)

For enquiries about I heart Market email