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Road to Growth South Africa – Online learning course
Brought to you by the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, Road to Growth is designed to build the business skills and financial literacy of women entrepreneurs.

About the Road to Growth online learning course

The programme is delivered partnership with the Gordon Institute for Business Science Entrepreneurship Development Academy (GIBS EDA) and thus benefits from GIBS’ extensive experience and expert faculty staff, who will be facilitating the training.

The training course uses a custom-built ‘Road to Growth’ curriculum, which is structured around seven key themes:

  • Connections: Developing a vision for your business and identifying steps to achieve it.
  • Context: Knowing your market, understanding business positioning.
  • Communication: Using digital marketing and e-commerce for business.
  • Capacity: Analysing financial statements and improving profitability.
  • Capital: Developing a financing strategy that supports the growth plan for your business.
  • Character: Managing financial relationships, knowing your rights and responsibilities.
  • Confidence: Building the confidence to apply for financing.

In 2023, the  course will be available to 50 women in South Africa.

It requires a commitment of 8-10 hours per week over a total of 7 weeks. Each week will include a 2 hour live discussion session (plus one onboarding session before the programme starts) and various self-paced learning activities. Some of the live sessions will be offered in a hybrid format whereby participants can choose to either join in-person at the GIBS campus in Sandton, Johannesburg, (at your own cost of travel) or participate online.

This programme is most appropriate for women whose businesses are at the development and growth stage. The programme is not suitable for women running businesses at the start-up stage.

You can apply for Road to Growth if you:

  • Own a registered business in South Africa
  • Are at least 21 years
  • Has been operating for at least 3 years
  • Has an annual revenue of at least R500,000 (total sales in one year)
  • Has 50% or more female ownership
  • Employs at least 2 or more persons full-time (excluding the owner)
  • Are involved in the full time running of the business
  • Have a minimum educational qualification of a Matric certificate, but this may be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
  • Have English language proficiency
  • Have access to an electronic device and internet connectivity for online learning and basic computer literacy
  • Must have access to an electronic device and internet connectivity for online learning and basic computer literacy
  • Have not participated in any of the GIBS EDA Programmes in the last 18 months
  • Have a strong desire and commitment to grow your business

Please note that this programme is sector agnostic and therefore welcomes applicants from a wide range of sectors and backgrounds. We also have no ethnicity quota.

The closing date for applications is the 17th of July 2023, with the programme set to start in August 2023.

Road to Growth’s unique curriculum


Is tailored to meet the business development and financial literacy needs of women owners of small businesses.

Equips women entrepreneurs with knowledge and skills to access capital and provides connections to financial institutions and peer entrepreneurs.

Offers a step-by-step “learning journey” towards increased confidence and capacities to succeed in business.


“I had an amazing learning experience, particularly learning to put together financial statements for my business, making a sales forecast and the cash flow projection.”


“This training has been really valuable to my business.
I have attended a lot of capacity-building training but this was different and genuinely amazing. I have never felt so motivated before. Thank you so much.”


This program has set me on my way to achieving my growth plan. I am more confident and knowledgeable about financial literacy and investment readiness.


“It has empowered me to dare to fly, fly high and achieve my goals. Networking with different women gives the soothing feeling of me not being alone with my challenges. I'm more confident to ignore the screams and pursue
my dreams.”

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See what else participants have to say

Documented impact

Road to Growth has reached over 4,300 women across Nigeria, Mexico, Indonesia, Vietnam, Guyana, Kenya, and South Africa.

Road to Growth is a tried, tested and highly successful programme for women entrepreneurs looking to take their existing businesses to the next level. The programme has lasting impacts for women entrepreneurs; enhancing their business knowledge and confidence, creating growth, developing their networks and increasing their preparedness to access to finance to take their businesses to the next level.

100% of the 49 women who completed the programme last year told us that they would recommend it to their friends or network and that their network had also increased as a result of taking part. Furthermore, 80% actively demonstrated changes in business knowledge and 72% improved their confidence to succeed in business as an immediate outcome after the programme.

62% of the women also increased their business performance (Revenue, Profit, Customers and Employees) with 92% increasing their profit during the course of the programme.

Watch Lubet’s story to discover the impact of Road to Growth in Mexico:

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Learn about the amazing journey of our Road to Growth Nigeria participants here:

Project sponsors and partners


The Entrepreneurship Development Academy (EDA) is the heart of entrepreneurial development and thinking at GIBS (Gordon Institute of Business Science). The EDA specialises in understanding entrepreneurship, enabling business owners to understand the environment within which they work and thrive within it. We work with entrepreneurs in both the formal and informal sectors, at various stages of business growth, in multiple geographic locations as well as through online programme delivery.”

GIBS Entrepreneurship Development Academy

Cherie Blair Foundation for Women

The Cherie Blair Foundation for Women supports women entrepreneurs in low and middle income countries to achieve their full potential, and works to close the global gender gap in entrepreneurship. Since 2008 the Foundation has directly supported over 230,000 women across more than 100 countries. Through programmes and advocacy, the Foundation enables women to start and grow successful micro, small and medium businesses.  This opens doors to finance, markets, networks and more, so women can create better futures for themselves and their families, enable their communities to prosper, contribute to strong economies, and move the world in a whole new direction .


Deutsche Post DHL Group is the world’s leading logistic company. The Group connects people and markets and is an enabler of global trade. It aspires to be the first choice for customers, employees and investors worldwide. To this end, Deutsche Post DHL Group is focusing on growth in its profitable core logistics businesses and accelerating the digital transformation in all business divisions. The Group contributes to the world through sustainable business practices, corporate citizenship and environmental activities. By the year 2050, Deutsche Post DHL Group aims to achieve zero emissions logistics.

Deutsche Post DHL Group employs approximately 570,000 people in over 220 countries and territories worldwide. The Group generated revenues of more than 66 billion Euros in 2020.

The logistics company for the world

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