Name: Nomvuyiseko Mbenene
Business: Claims Processing Excellence (Pty) Ltd
City, Country: Western Cape, South Africa
Website URL: www.claimsprocessingexcellence.com
Nomvuyiseko Mbenene is the founder and owner of Claims Processing Excellence (Pty) Ltd, a business administration company that helps aspiring entrepreneurs incorporate their companies and translate their ideas into a business plan and trains start up entrepreneurs on business administration and financial literacy. Nomvuyiseko's business also helps develop effective turnaround strategies, administers short-term insurance and medical aid claims, and provides accounting, payroll, taxation, and business advisory services. A graduate of the the University of KwaZulu Natal, the University of Liverpool, and Stellenbosch University, Nomvuyiseko got the original idea for her business after she received a 1-year old medical aid claim from a GP. She had changed medical aid schemes by then and even employers. She realised there was a gap in the claims administration market and decided to design a system that would automate the processing of claims (short-term insurance and medical aid) through a mobile application in order to speed up processing times. Hence, the name Claims Processing Excellence. It was a great idea but building the software would require money and financing was very difficult to obtain. She started working on the project but had to stop in 2013 due to lack of funds. She went back to work to bootstrap the project. In the meantime, she expanded the remit of Claims Processing Excellence to offer services to other companies, a step that allowed her to resign as an employee and work full-time on her own business and continue developing the custom software.
In 2016, Nomvuyiseko was awarded a Tony Elumelu Fellowship and did the 3-month program (TEEP). When she completed the fellowship, she received a grant which enabled her to take her business to the next level.
On TEEP, Nomvuyiseko says: "I couldn’t believe it. I received calls from people who saw my name listed on Twitter. Then I received an sms from the Fellowship. I was too excited. I saw this as a door opener for the company. I learnt about company management, importance of legal aspects such as having contracts in place with suppliers and clients, hard work and resilience, how to get customers, and pricing aspects. The grant enabled me to move my offices to a better location. We bought new laptops, furniture and other stationery. We bought switchboard equipment, etc." We have managed to get new clients through referrals. Some saw the SABC digital interviews I had when in Nigeria, and contacted me; existing clients brought more business; we are even in the process of being given all the clients by an accountant that is closing down the accounting business. His clients a large and the fees are 5 times higher than the fees we charge. I would say we gained more credibility.”
Nomvuyiseko advises those looking for ideas for a new business to think about a need that customers are looking to fill. Usually it's something you yourself need and cannot find anyone to who makes this product or offers such a service. But most importantly, aim to be self-sustaining rather than relying on grants or government funding. At the end of the day, customers must sustain your business.
Watch a video interview with this South African founder.[embed]https://youtu.be/haLbql_Den4[/embed]