When she started her job as a receptionist for an engineering company in Pretoria a few years ago, never in her wildest dreams could businesswoman Ntsoaki Kortjass-Sibiya have imagined that the job would propel her to become her own boss.
Fast forward to present day and the Tsoabelo Security Solutions founder and CEO is running her own security company with skills and expertise acquired from her previous employer.
Not only is she slaying the business world but Ntsoaki is now bringing her business acumen to the catwalk as a finalist in the Mrs South Africa 2021 pageant.
She is excited at the prospect of increasing her network the Mrs South Africa pageant.
"I'm very excited about this opportunity to raise my public profile and to leverage business opportunities that will emerge from this platform," she says.
Becoming a boss babe
For Ntsoaki developing her business muscle and reputation depended a lot on incubation, so when
she started her company she sought out incubation opportunities.
“I felt that not everyone makes it into an incubation programme and that often gives one credibility.
In addition to that you are taught different skills set such as basic finances, marketing and sales,
which I could not get from my previous job,” she adds.
She says with such programmes one is not about to fall off the wagon because they ensure that
there is accountability. “It is not casual like a typical startup, and that has helped a lot”.
In terms of access to markets, Ntsoaki also lauds incubation programmes for procurement workshop
and workshops on client acquisition.
“For a startup we have done fairly well because we now in the residential space, we are not just
doing guarding services,” she says.
Navigating the market
The security industry is not for the faint hearted, she admits because besides it being male
dominated, at entry level there is a proliferation of new companies doing the same thing and trying
to cut it into the industry.
“Most black owned security companies want to be in the space for tendering purposes so the
competition is stiff. But I was clear from the onset that I don’t want to go into the space only for
tenders with government which is what most people are competing for,” she says.
She says the land scape in security is huge but black owned companies end up only playing in the
“I made sure that I understand the context of the industry and not fight for the crumbs as it were. I
mean there is so much more to security, there is technology, VIP protection and not just guards at
the gate,” she says.
“It has been quite tough as a small company to enter other parts of the sector because to be taken
seriously people expect more of a business muscle,” she says.
Security and 4IR
Her current success is not enough because not she is looking to tap into the technology space.
And with Fourth Industrial Revolution being the buzz in all industries, Ntsoaki is also looking at
capitalizing on this to grow her business.
She says the investment from tech firm IBM will also help her grow her business and take it o the
technology direction she wants it to go into.
“We want to keep up with the 4IR trends in the next three years we really want our solutions to be
technology based and see ourselves on the next level. In five to seven years from now we want to be
in the banking sector and cyber security, so at the moment we focusing on our core and mastering
it,” she says.
Once you plant the seed and say this is what I want to do, look out for platforms where there is
support and like-minded people. Hang around those people.