Fifteen contestants of My Own Boss Season IV — The Buy Zimbabwe Edition were announced at a launch hosted at the Management Training Bureau ahead of the premiere of the show on Africa Unite
and ZBCTV on August 22.
The contestants who secured a place in the top 15 are Garikai Magwenzi, Tavavaviri Gocheki, Godwin Vincent Gogwe, Kudakwashe Gwasera, Odert Kosimoni, Knowledge Nyenyayi, Raymond Mashiri, Sandisiwe Mahlangu, Tafadzwa Munatsi, Tapiwanashe Chikwinho, Tendai Hombarume, Thelma Chimbgando, Charlene Chekenya, Thesius Marufu and Tsitsi Murahwa.
Each one of these contestants stands a chance to walk away with the US$25 000 prize money to be invested into the winning proposal at the end of the show.
Three contestants faced the chopping board and the other two bowed out due to personal problems. Thamsanqa Ndhlovu, Malvern Hunda, Noble Moyo were eliminated from the show while Ngonidzashe Killian Mudzimu and Welldone Zingudzi left on compassionate grounds.
Following an intense two-week entrepreneurship training, the contestants’ entrepreneurial skills were tested in an advertising task. The contestants were tasked to sell advertising space in the My Own Boss Magazine which will carry testimonials shared by the mentors during the Champions Nights, the contestants’ experiences and entrepreneurial training guides.
The My Own Boss contestants were broken down into groups of five and given US$100 for each group as seed money to jumpstart the magazine project. At the end of a week they were expected to get advertisement space of US$4 000 each.
“The top 15 we have were selected on the basis of key entrepreneurial skills that include leadership, innovation and profitability,” said Munyaradzi Hwengwere,
the chief executive officer of MOB and general manager for Buy Zimbabwe.
“My Own Boss in partnership with Management Training Bureau put the 20 contestants through a intensive two-week training programme which was designed to equip them with the necessary mental, spiritual and physical equilibrium as they venture into the world of entrepreneurship.
“This effectively means that even the contestants who have left the show have been prepared for the entrepreneurial world and for those that exhibit potential even outside the framework show, My Own Boss will continue to work with them,” said Hwengwere.
The focus of the show is to build sustainable business ideas that respond to Zimbabwe’s economic climate.
“The show that we launch today is not about the prize money but is about the business idea, about the passion to get into business and the strength to last and stay in business. It is about the relevance of the business, can it be applied locally within Zimbabwe’s economic context and, most importantly, does it generate
money? It is about survival,” said Nigel Chanakira.
The launch was graced by successful business leaders and entrepreneurs such as the flamboyant and serial entrepreneur Philip Chiyangwa, founder of Securico
Devine Ndhlukula, the record-breaking Chamu Chiwanza and Grain Marketing Board general manager Albert Mandizha, to mention but a few.
Entertainment during the launch was provided by Gweru duo, comedians Mabiribobi, who incidentally auditioned for the reality show but unfortunately, did not make it.
According to the show’s producers, the show seeks to create opportunities and mould entrepreneurs not only for the corporate world but also emphasises on diversity of entrepreneurial avenues.
“My Own Boss realises that there are different types of entrepreneurs out there and when we saw Mabiribobi entertain during the Gweru auditions we thought that it was important for us to promote their act. Comedy is an art that one can eke a living from and be their own bosses,” MOB public relationship executive
Rumbidzai Matinanga said.