Big ups to the team at Tsogo Sun, supporting and encouraging local entrepreneurs and this piece focusses on Soweto-born jewellery designer and manufacturer and Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur alumnus, Nqobile Nkosi.
Nqobile opened a new NQ Jewellery factory at the Rand Refinery Estate in Germiston on 5 December, representing successful business growth from a humble start in his first 3m X 3m ‘factory’ built of tin in Soweto in 2007.
In 2009 NQ Jewellery won a community award that enabled him to build a four-room facility in Soweto, which has been the company’s home until this move to Rand Refinery.
NQ Jewellery’s new Rand Refinery 200-square-metre premises employs eight people, as well as interns from universities and FET colleges. The company designs and produces custom-made, high-end
jewellery that retails at various outlets around the country, including Bryanston Organic Market, Tourvest retail outlets at airports, and at Shishangeni Lodge on Kruger National Park’s border.
At the opening, Nkosi said opportunities opened for his business when he was crowned Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur of the Year in 2016. “Through the Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur platform, we launched our first corporate division, designing, manufacturing and supplying high-quality items such as key rings, cuff links, jacket pins and trophies. This led to our incorporation into the Rand Refinery Supplier Development programme.”
Nkosi also gives credit for his business success to his partner, Jerry Nkeli, the first black paraplegic person to qualify as an attorney, the founder of Jerry Nkeli & Associates law firm, who invested in NQ Jewellery and is chairman of the company. NQ Jewellery maintains a strong local focus, using only local raw material, which includes silver, gold, platinum, coloured gemstones and diamonds, and employing local artisans and designers. Nkosi notes that this is significant as up to 80% of jewellery sold in South Africa is imported.
NQ Jewellery’s services include designing and manufacturing corporate gifts according to specifications; laser engraving; silver and gold jewellery design and manufacture with gemstones and
diamonds, including wedding and engagement rings; and jewellery repairs and polishing. Products include a full range of jewellery, money clips, corporate badges, sports medals, and more.
At the opening, Nkosi thanked individuals and organisations that have contributed to the NQ Jewellery journey, including Mr and Mrs Nkeli, Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs, and Rand Refinery. “This educational journey has enabled me to understand the two different worlds of art and business, and how they can work together. It will always be an important lesson in my life – and one I will continue to learn.”
To learn more about Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs, watch the Legacy Series on the Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs YouTube channel.
Find out more about NQ Jewellery HERE…