MADE with Peter Sebiloane

METROFM Guest blogger

MADE is a new feature on the AM Edition with Adil and Marian, that celebrates self-made South Africans that beat the odds to make a success of their lives.

Mr Peter Thapelo Sebilone, the Executive Chairman and founder of Ntsu e Ntsho , a black industrialist, a true visionary who started the Ntsu e Ntsho Group of Companies.

He was born and bread in Petrus Steyn, a small town in Free State. Good family values are an integral part of his story. He is a 44 years old,married with two children. His biggest breakthrough, that sets him apart from other businessmen was when he acquired his first major contract with the Free State Department of Education.
The contract was awarded to EduSciMat a business that started as a family orientated structure, he transformed the business into a multi-million rand international corporatized entity.

This is how the story unfolds:

He is armed with a Diploma in Business Management that he aquired in London, while enroute as a executive producer in music , something he was extremely passionate about. He left the music industry and bought his first manufacturing company,manufactoring plastics, but due to lack of passion in the field and low demand in the product, he closed the factory.

The entrepreneurial bug set in at an early stage of his working life. He started the group from scratch with his own resources. Patience became a virtue.

Supplying stationary to public schools became a launching pad. Improvement of mathematics and science learning techniques led to the conception of the science and maths lab initiatives. This led to the birth of portable science-laboratories. The portable laboratories soon graduated to permanent new laboratories. This meant that classrooms had to be adapted to suit the needs of maths and science labs. The concept, which was ground breaking at the time, found resonance with the Free State Education Department. The North West Education Department and the Lesotho Education Departments followed suit. Efforts are underway to extend this concept to other provinces of the Republic of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Nigeria.

The success of the laboratories gave birth to other business opportunities. These included the establishment of a tablet manufacturing plant, training and development in the education space, building of assembly lines to promote the local economy, development of e-learning content material, risk solutions with regard to supplied material and the specially adapted classrooms and infrastructure development projects.

As the business grew, it became inevitable that the different projects be housed in separate companies. Subsidiary companies were then launched. All are owned by the executive chairman and are currently self- funded. The group consists of Eduscimat (Pty) Ltd, Eduscimat Risk Solutions (Pty) Ltd, Emeritus Training Academy (Pty)Ltd, Matla A Ntsu (Pty) Ltd, Eduscimat International Holding (Pty) Ltd and Enlight Techno Solution , they all form part of the Ntsu E Ntsho Group Ltd.

Though the first major contract was concluded in 2008, the executive chairman’s business experience dates back to the pre-2008 era when he secured stationary supply deals at public schools. Whereas Eduscimat (Pty) Ltd started from humble beginnings with the executive chairman as the inaugural managing director, it now boasts a staff compliment of ninety four dedicated professionals. Each subsidiary is run by a managing director.

Partnerships have been forged with companies in India, Portugal and Singapore. Designmate, which is based in India, is an IT partner on the solutions that the group offers. JP, an entity based in Portugal, assists with the assembly of customised tablets. The Singaporean partners assist with the content material that is being offered to schools.

The group subscribes to the words of Kofi Annan: “ Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family”.

The group’s vision: To become Africa’s premier leader in the knowledge space by providing innovated and value added solutions to our clients.

The group’s mission: We are committed to producing the human capital of the twenty first century that is responsive and competitive to labour market opportunities by providing high quality products and specialised solutions throughout the value chain of the education space.

See Thapelo’s interview on the AM Edition on METRO TV below: