BUSINESSMAN Hezron Louw did not anticipate a rapid success when starting the gourmet street food company Sumting Fresh, with his business partner chef Andrew Leeuw.
Last night he took home the Tsogo Sun Entrepreneurs award!
The company specialises in street food and catering and owns a restaurant that started operations in 2012 in Midrand.
These days you can find them feeding their famous Cajun Chicken garnished with Asian slaw, sweet chilli, aioli, parmesan and watermelon to hundreds of foodies all over the country.
They sell their food at various food festivals and markets.
Hezron told SunFood that starting the company was something they had to do because of their passion for street food.
“It started when Andrew and I met in a taxi years ago and discovered we shared a passion for food – we also realised that if we could just get started, we had the drive to make it.
“We borrowed from friends and family and put in all our savings to get the equipment we needed,” he explained.
They started out with a food trailer. They currently own a double decker bus, a restaurant in Norwood, Joburg and they have 50 employees, 18 of whom are full-time.
“We aim to ensure that our business is sustainable for a long time to come – and we see no reason why we can’t eventually grow into an iconic South African brand such as Nando’s or RocoMamas,” he said.
Speaking to SunFood before the awards, Hezron said winning would mean the world to them.
“I don’t think I have ever been this nervous in my life. This is huge for our business and vision,” he said.
He revealed to SunFood that although running a business was not easy, he had learned that treating staff members well was a valuable lesson.
“When you take care of your people, they will in turn take care of you and your business,” said Hezron.