University of Cape Town: UCT vendors put their best foot forward

The UCT Vendors Expo, is a meet-and-greet event, which brings together UCT service providers and procurement decision-makers. It was by all accounts a resounding success, given many suppliers commitment to attend the event again next year.

UCT service providers used the recent vendor expo as an opportunity to market their services directly to a captive audience of UCT head of departments who were in attendance.

The one-day event was held at the Baxter Theatre and organised by Connect. Meet. Collaborate (CMC) and UCT’s procurement and payment services.

Deidre Raubenheimer, CMC manager, said: “UCT has an assortment of vendors who are essentially external service providers. UCT has in the region of 6 000 vendors. We sent an invitation to all of them to ask them if they are interested in attending the event.”

The invitation operated on a first-come, first-served basis, and 27 vendors enjoyed the opportunity to showcase their services.

The UCT Vendor Expo took place on 14 June. Vendors had the opportunity to market their services.
Khaya Mbulawa, purchasing analyst with UCT’s procurement and payment services, explained the process of becoming a UCT vendor.

“There has to be a UCT department or faculty using their services in order for them to become a vendor. As procurement we ensure compliance; we are not the end users. That’s why suppliers have to become known by marketing themselves.

“We’ve had a positive response from vendors who wanted to attend the event and we are going to go on a bigger scale next year.”

Positive feedback from vendors

Tracey Da Mata, a sales executive with Labotec, which provides laboratory equipment, among other things, said the event was worth attending.

“It’s our first time exhibiting at this expo, and it was a very busy morning meeting people. I thought with all the rain that people wouldn’t come. It’s been worth it.”

The fine collection.co was represented by administrator, Jade Sham, and director, Eben Lassen. Sham explained: “We represent hotels, and we do conferencing around the country so if anyone is looking to travel, we assist with the bookings.”

Lassen added: “It’s our first time at this event and it’s been lovely. We are definitely coming back next year.”

Robyn London, the managing director of the cleaning service Focus Facilities Solutions, said that she has diarised the event in her business calendar.

“I met so many different people and realised the many other markets that we can venture into. I’ll definitely be back here next year.”

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