Itumeleng Lekomamyane (27) is proving that with persistence and dedication one can start a business and grow it with little-to-nothing.
He recently joined Gugulethu Mfuphi to share some of the lessons from going to taxi ranks and building his brand Sandwich Nton Ntons from the ground up.
Listen to the full conversation here:
The budding entrepreneur made news when he grew his sandwich business into a R20,000 a month enterprise with four locations across Johannesburg’s central business district (CBD).
During the hard lockdown last year, he made a big gamble that paid off, using R800 he was supposed to pay for his daughter’s maintenance money to start his sandwich business.
“I would see so many people on the streets every day, and I am just passing them by and buying from these people. What can I do to be just like them. I told myself, Itumeleng maybe you need to start selling something, and I decided to start selling sandwiches.”
The Sandwich King
He also spoke about using social media to promote his business. He says people would recognise him from his online activity and would pass by his stand just to support him.
“Twitter is where I got recognised, I use social media to tell people to find me here on specific days.”
The entrepreneur The stock pic.twitter.com/iIfwbET9W7
— Itumeleng Lekomanyane (@sandwich_kiing) January 30, 2020
No one ever became great by sleeping most of their life away so Vuka, Ugeze, Ubangene tot tot ntwana retlo popa kaofela eventually, put your trust in the process and leave the almighty in control! pic.twitter.com/UO7F3vOXPK
— Itumeleng Lekomanyane (@sandwich_kiing) February 17, 2021
Wake up,say a lil prayer,bath,dress up,smell good,check yourself out in the mirror, hype the hell out of yourself,walk out with positivity that repels any negativity and go out there to take over the world as you have got this.#MondayMotivation #SandwichNtonNtons pic.twitter.com/36pdQ6j34r
— Itumeleng Lekomanyane (@sandwich_kiing) November 12, 2020
Expanding the Business
After realising that the business was starting to take shape, he saw there’s potential to grow it even further.
That’s when he started roping in more young people like himself that weren’t employed, and would find a location, promote it and leave a new person behind to sell across Johannesburg.
He currently has four people working with him in the CBD.