Dimakatso Sylvia “Poppy” Nkunyane
Thato Ya Botshelo Trading and Projects
Whenever her construction business scores a contract of whatever size, Dimakatso Sylivia “Poppy” Nkunyane always ensures that she subcontracts female-led entities from her area. Nkunyane, 50, also mentors these women in entrepreneurship and construction and imparts knowledge so they can understand the ins and outs of the male-dominated built sector. Crucially, she teaches them how to tender for government projects. “Most township families are headed by women. My area is poverty-stricken, so empowering women through business improves the lifestyle of their families and the general society. It is my goal and focus to see more women being empowered and given a chance in this industry,” says Nkunyane. Nkunyane, who is from Bophelong township, Vanderbijlpark, southwest of Johannesburg, established Thato Ya Botshelo (TYB) Trading and Projects in 2013. TYB, which started operating in 2018, specialises in civil construction and general building projects, which include building bridges, dams, schools and low-cost houses. Recently, TYB took part in the civil construction of a 14.2km road that runs between Potchefstroom and Vanderbijlpark. This year it’s one of companies involved in the construction of R42 road in Vanderbijlpark. Nkunyane’s company also specialises in general supplies and has delivered, for example, stationery, office equipment and textbooks to various clients in Gauteng. Nkunyane studied marketing management at AAA School of Advertising, computer literacy at IBM and entrepreneurship at Milpark College in Johannesburg, among other courses.