Lion's Den Global

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Lion's Den Global: Lion's Den

Johannesburg, South AfricaJohannesburg, South Africa
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The Lion’s Den initiative exists to provide support to youth entrepreneurial work so that they are able to engage in initiatives and contribute to social transformation. The project creates a conducive platform for young active citizens between the ages of 18-35, who are leading social impact.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

All young people could run sustainable enterprises in their own communities?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

South Africa is faced with the challenge of high unemployment especially among the youth. According to the dti, youth unemployment constitutes 73% of the total unemployment in the country. The government’s aim is to “foster youth economic participation by deliberately enhancing youth entrepreneurship, accelerating the growth of young-owned and managed enterprises capable of contributing to the gross domestic product (GDP)”

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

The Lion’s Den and many other NGOs, CSOs and the private sector wish to join hands with the government in sharing this responsibility as it cannot be done by the government alone. In the recent past, The Lion’s Den has made enterprise development an important area of its operations and has embarked on assisting youth to start their own enterprises and to help them grow. Enterprise development has included skills training, capacity development, linkage to business opportunities, market development, information sharing and many other ways that lead to their growth and sustainability.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

On the 14thJune, 20th June, 05th July , The Lion’s Den, Powered by the Nelson Mandela Children’s in partnerships with Sports Arts Culture and Recreation, Kellogg, Gauteng Enterprise Propeller organized The Lion’s Den/ideas festival, a space where young people from Ekurhuleni, Johannesburg, and Tshwane, presented their projects/Business/NGO’s and thorough scrutiny and critic – a panel of Industry Leaders across different sectors gave feedback to their pitches, provided feasible follow-up support to the relevant project.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Till date then Lion's Den has impacted on more than 600 young people in provinces of Gauteng, Capetown, North West, Freestate and KwaZulu Natal, 70% of young people that have presented at the Lions Den, now run sustainable enterprises and some got business through the network. The following categories were represented in the pitching: • Environment management • Feeding Schemes at Basic Education • Improvements to SA Education System • Manufacturing and Production • Services The prizes included • Laptop • Funding for pilot projects with Kellogg • Tickets to the Gauteng Sports Awards - Business Development Support from the Gauteng Enterprise Propeller - Incubation from the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship - Funding from Industry Experts

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

We currently have two provinces that host monthly Lion's Dens (Gauteng and KwaZulu Natal), we are continuing to create sustainable partnership with corporate companies and government institutions. Our Plan is to make a national impact in South Africa by March 2015, branch out to African countries in 2016 and be global in 2018. Our main vision is to be "The Leading collaborative, profitable and project sustainability network for young people who drive change in the world" We aim to develop a R1billion rand project fund in 5 years that will impact on more than 6000 youth led projects.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

We continue to develop relationships with Enterprise Development Companies, International donors, the Department of Economic Development in South Africa, corporate businesses requiring BEE-credits through social development. AS the Lion's Den grows, young people will pay an eligible fee. Currently we are on a funding partnership with the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund and Kellogg SA, a partnership that will sustain us till 2015.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The key enterprise development competitor is the network of business incubators, which are supported by SEDA. However, these incubators follow a traditional approach of providing (temporary) business- and back-office facilities and mentorship. Competitive advantage The key competitive advantages include: • the BEE level-3 status of the business; • networking relationships with developmental authorities in the greater South African area and with donor agencies such as the Kellogs Foundation; and • low overhead cost structure,Networks to access coomunitie in low income areas

Founding Story

Ulwazi Resources Consulting (Pty) Ltd. was incorporated during 2012. The director and 100 % shareholder is Mr Thabang Mabuza (ID: 880220 5378 087). The business is trading informally since 2011. The core business (up to June 2013) was offering integrated education solutions aimed at assisting the youth in the greater Johannesburg area to develop basic literacy & numeracy skills and make informed career choices. During June 2013, the director has identified a market opportunity in providing the following value proposition: • Creating a space for youth to engage (collaborate and co-create) industry leaders through career-expos; and • Creating a space for youth who spear-head social impact projects through engaging


Ulwazi Resource Consulting boasts of a strong management team based on skills, knowledge and experience. The team; Mr Thabang Mabuza, Ms Moleboheng Sekhosana, Mr Tony Mathipa and Ms Nhlanhla Khumalo (BA Hons) have over 10 years combined experience in education and skills development. Working together, they have developed cutting-edge strategies to grow Ulwazi Resource Consulting to be the leading career research and information company in SA
About You
Ulwazi Resource Consulting
About You
First Name


Last Name


About Your Project
Organization Name

Ulwazi Resource Consulting

How long has your organization been operating?

Organization Country

, GT, Johannesburg

Country where this project is creating social impact

, GT, Johannesburg

What awards or honors has the project received?
Funding: How is your project financial supported?

Individuals, Foundations, Businesses, Regional government.

Please list your date of birth (YYYY/MM/DD)


Please tell us how leadership training would help you to make an even greater impact on the social innovation field.

- The leadership training will enable an opportunity for me to be part of a Global network of young people who drive change across Africa.
- It will give me an opportunity to collaborate and partner with delegates who are in the same sector I work in.
- I will be able to take all the training tools and be able to implement the learning in my country.

Please enclose a short personal biography.

One day CEO at SAA Technical, Thabang Mabuza considers himself a Social Entrepreneur who is passionate about creating spaces for young people to collaborate and cocreate. Founder of @ulwaziresource and @Lionsdenglobal, Advisory board Member at Common Purpose SA, Formerly chairperson of the Nelson Mandela Children Fund youth club and a 2013 Brightest Young Minds, an external consultant for the World Economic Forum on Africa and Switzerland.

• Thabang Has Impacted on more 5000 young people through his career expos in partnerships with Kellogg, Studietrust and Microsoft
• He mentors 80 projects and cooperatives led by young people with the intent of addressing social challenges in their communities through innovation and sustainability
• Continues to create spaces for young people to engage, collaborate and cocreate through his Lion’s Den events having hosted them in Johannesburg, Capetown and Durban