Outstanding staffing services: Tembakunye Recruitment celebrates 10 years of connecting clients with the right talent


From meeting last-minute placements to surviving the recession and becoming 100% black-owned, the last ten years has been an exciting journey for Port Elizabeth-based TembaKunye Recruitment CC, says owner, Thando Madyibi.

“It feels like yesterday, but 2005 started with me owning a recruitment agency here – having relocated from Pietermaritzburg, KZN,” describes Madyibi, who is originally from the Transkei.

“However, I soon realised that while I was building my client base, I did not have enough funding to run the whole operation. I ended up approaching the then owners of TembaKunye for a partnership - because the value that I was bringing in was what TembaKunye was lacking, we found synergy and decided to dissolve my company and I took up part-ownership of TembaKunye.”

In 2009, when two members resigned, he negotiated a settlement which gave him a 60% shareholding in the agency.

“I was so hungry – as I still am, to run a successful company that is ultimately 100% mine. So, at the beginning of 2014, I made a bold decision to buy out the remaining two owners, who are part of John Ross Recruitment, subsequently transforming TembaKunye into a 100% black-owned recruitment agency,” he explains.

While many small businesses, including recruitment agencies, succumbed to the 2008 Recession, TembaKunye emerged relatively unscathed.

“We survived because, instead of dividing the profits of 2007, without knowing there was a looming economic disaster, I said let’s reinvest in the business – and we were unaffected by the recession,” Madyibi describes.

He adds that the trust the agency had built with clients for delivering excellent services also sustained them.

“I have always said that I would like to be appointed on merit rather than on our B-BBEE score. Empowerment is good but let it be a by-the-way thing. Our company was not going to succeed because there is a black face but because I worked hard - and continue to work hard, to be the best in our industry.”

While TembaKunye primarily focusses on, local government, parastatals and FMCG recruitment, the company is now placing particular attention on engineering and manufacturing to meet the demand for black artisans and qualified engineers locally, says Madyibi.

“The next five to ten years is going to be an interesting time as I am focussing on building the resources of the business and extending our reach. When that is done, the plan is to enter the market in KZN and East London and ensuring that we have invested in the right people to get us there. We will also continue to adapt to the changing statutory regulations and technology,” he adds.


Photo Caption:  TembaKunye Recruitment CC owner, Thando Madyibi.