Invest Buffalo City: Invest, Work, Live and Play – One Click away

MAY 23, 2016

Invest Buffalo City (IBC), is a concept that emerged as early as 2006 out of the Border-Kei Chamber of Business’s (BKCOB) Infrastructure Committee to provide a one-stop-shop for investors that would provide all the pertinent information – local contact information, cost of doing business, registration processes – everything existing and new businesses would require to do business in Buffalo City.

And more than that, Invest Buffalo City builds upon the concept of “Invest, Work, Live and Play – One Click away” realising that investment decisions are made by various locational factors, such as having access to good education and schools, healthy environments and secure neighbourhoods.

Les Holbrook, the BKCOB’s executive director has been driving the initiative from the start. “After a two-year hiatus after having secured successful start-up funding, IBC is back and better than ever with Saskia Haardt as an experienced project manager” said Holbrook.The German Governance Support Programme (GIZ) has been working with the BKCOB for over eight years in local economic development and Ms. Saskia Haardt is the latest secondment from this collaboration. “Having worked for an economic development agency before, Saskia understands well, how to tap into local resources to make this initiative a success” said Holbrook.

A collaboration agreement was signed between the BKCOB, East London Industrial Development Zone and Eastern Cape Development Corporation. The Buffalo City itself sees IBC as a key initiative to retain local businesses and to ensure a conducive business environment is in place for new businesses coming into town. Haardt says this initiative builds upon a sound partnership where all stakeholders understand the role they need to play to encourage doing business in the City. Haardt  is currently engaging with Mercedes-Benz South Africa, the Buffalo City Metropolitan Development Agency, the Airports Company South Africa and Provincial Government to broaden the partnership base.

Besides investment attraction and promotion, Invest Buffalo City will also closely collaborate with the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality on key initiatives to assist the Metro in working towards its 2030 vision of a well-governed, connected, green and innovative city. Projects on the cards are an environmental awareness and clean-up campaign, the development of an investment framework as well as working towards a positive self-image of local businesses. Furthermore, IBC is lobbying the Municipality to establish specific incentives, thereby increasing the attractiveness of investing in Buffalo City and developing the destination that is “hard to ignore.”

IBC now has a newly developed website and social media channels with which to engage both local and international investors. “By profiling local businesses with introductory videos, we’ve highlighted their investments in the region and believe it will encourage other investors to do the same. After all, we need to start with ourselves,” said Haardt.

Visit to find out more.