Magubane knows right brew for success

Born in Nkandla in the uThungulu district of KwaZulu-Natal, Sihle Magubane has always set his sights on the big stage.

Magubane, 39, was raised in the Sydenham informal settlement and is the owner and founder of Sihle’s Brew, a coffee manufacturing company with a footprint across the country.

The brand is now available in top retailers such as Spar, Food Lovers Market and Pick n Pay.

Sihle’s Brew has a manufacturing plant at North Riding shopping centre, Johannesburg.

He founded the business in 2012 after he was trained by coffee guru Roberto Monterrage at no cost.

Magubane, who is a barista, says that when he was presented with an opportunity, he pushed himself to the limit, and also underwent more robust training, attending different training academies at the University of Johannesburg and the Gordons Institute of Business and Science, to develop his skills and knowledge of how to brew coffee.

“My upbringing was tough. I had to juggle work and school, as I was a gardener and pizza maker to make ends meet.

“I remember when I had to write my final exam paper in 2003, I had no food in my stomach. I had no choice but to do my best in the exam. I am grateful to the Govender family who were supported me throughout my school years. I worked for them as a gardener while I was in matric and the family was supportive towards me, pushing for my dreams,” Magubane said.

He says it has been a challenging road for him to get to where he is today as a businessman.

“I had hope that whatever I was pursuing to attain success will work. The first five years I did coffee training were difficult as I had to push to get to the point that I needed to start my business. I started by buying coffee and doing magic to sell it to the people.

“Through the assistance of the Small Enterprise Developments Agency, I got a funding grant to purchase coffee manufacturing equipment and machinery, and this was when I opened my first coffee shop.

“Later I opened three more coffee shops and a manufacturing plant, manufacturing, packaging and supplying coffee for big retailers in the country.”

The business today employs 23 people, and he says this makes him feel proud. He is grateful that he is helping others to provide for their families. He says he is pushing harder to build his business so that he can employ more people, and contribute to the country’s economy.

“I love coffee in a  big way, and my vision is to grow Sihle’s Brew and to make sure that our coffee is available at every retailer in the country, while we work towards exporting our coffee to the rest of the world.

“Through dedication and passion this is possible,” Magubane added.

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