Uncertain Times – 5 Opportunities to be Exploited


2016 has been and will continue to be a year full of uncertainty. South Africa seems to be caught in a perfect storm facing political uncertainty, low economic growth, high unemployment, weakening exchange rate, rising interest rates and a potential rating downgrade. Most of us have little influence on the challenges facing the country – but even in the current environment there are opportunities to be exploited.

In my mind, there are some areas of opportunity which are beginning to emerge:

  1. Property Purchases

As bond interest rates begin the rise, some property owners may be forced to sell properties quickly by dropping asking prices. If you are able to obtain property finance you will be able to take advantage of buying opportunities.

  1. Buying a Business

The current level of political and economic uncertainty may result in some existing business owners having to reconsider their future. Some business owners may wish to realise the value created and decide to sell their businesses. There is an opportunity to acquire and buy a perfectly viable business which would not ordinarily have been on sale, had their not been a need for the business owner to choose to retire or cash-out at this time.

  1. Starting a Business

As cost in South Africa begins to rise as a result of inflation and the weakness in our exchange rate, some existing products and services have become too expensive and buyers begin to look for more affordable alternatives. If you are able to provide similar products and services at a lower cost, buyers will be open to doing business with you.

  1. Exporting a Product

The current weakness in the exchange rate makes South African produced products and services cheaper in global terms and we should consider taking advantage of export opportunities. There may even be opportunities to become an outsourced partner for a foreign company, e.g. the success we have seen in our local outsourced call centres.

  1. Tourism

The continued weakness in the exchange rate over the last few years has made South Africa a very affordable holiday destination and our tourism sector has an opportunity to grow even further. Offering services to tourists and making their experience more memorable is an opportunity indeed.

These are some ideas that have come to mind. I am sure that if you begin to explore the areas in which you operate in, many more opportunities will become apparent. It is really about changing your attitude towards the current situation and looking for opportunities which can be exploited.