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  • Writer's pictureStanford Lake College

No Gray areas for Stanford's young entrepreneurs

The Allan Gray Entrepreneurial Challenge (AGEC) aims to promote entrepreneurship in high schools. The game runs for 5 weeks. The time frame for the challenge is very specific. 70 – 80% of start-up businesses fail within the first five years. Each week of the AGEC represented one business year. Pupils taking part in the AGEC were tasked with keeping their businesses afloat for the full five weeks.

The Grade 11 and Grade 10 Business Studies pupils signed up for the challenge. Many other schools from across the country signed up to take part in the AGEC. During the first week it became quite apparent that the game was fraught with technical issues. This was very frustrating for those taking part. As a result, many pupils and schools withdrew from the challenge. Our pupils did not give up, demonstrating the entrepreneurial spirit of true grit. Pupils who managed to complete the full five weeks and hand in all their tasks on time were awarded a certificate of completion. As an incentive, each week 25 of the top players were awarded cash vouchers. The following Stanford pupils were among the top 25: Week 2 Michael Pieters – 5th place – R1 500,00 voucher Rhain Skordi – 25th place – R550,00 voucher Week 3 Rachel Rix – 23rd place – R550,00 voucher Week 4 Diego Vieira – 4th place – R1500,00 voucher

All these start-up businesses started with a R0,00 balance at the beginning of the game. Pupils had to source funding for their business ventures and make wise financial decisions to ensure their businesses were going concerns. Although some pupils did not receive their certificates as they had not handed in all their tasks, the financial state of their businesses in the fifth week was very impressive.


Tallen Smit – R2 078 898,00

Peter Pratt – R2 007 718,00

Layla de Bruyn – R2 001 086,00

Phumudzo Makumbana – R1 991 765,00

Devon Coad – R1 904 888,00

Rachel Rix – R1 661 057,00

Jemma Henning – R1 521 394,00

Akshar Patel – R1 400 000,00

We made many mistakes while playing the AGEC, but many valuable lessons were learned. We are looking forward to taking on the challenge again next year. The AGEC was a platform to showcase the natural business talent many of our pupils possess. It is important to nurture this talent as the South African economy is dependent on it.

Pupils awarded Certificates of Completion: Akshar Patel, Anika Willemse, Anointed Tshivhengwa, Layla de Bruyn, Ethan Modika, Koni Fobbe, Michaela Gosling, Chelsea Hudson, JJ Vilakazi, Joel Mushambavanhu, Lwandle Maluleke, Phathu Raphalalani, Thato Sibuyi and Vhukhudo Makhomu.

The Grade 10 participants.

The Grade 11 participants.

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