oa Journal of Management & Administration - The determinants of success of female African immigrant entrepreneurs in South Africa

Volume 2018 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1728-9157



The study aims to investigate the key success factors of female African immigrant entrepreneurs in South Africa. Female entrepreneurial activity in South Africa is reported to be lower than in other Sub-Saharan African countries, due to women’s ‘fear of failure’ and low self-confidence although it is increasingly recognised for its contribution to economic development, through growth and job creation. Although extensive research has uncovered drivers and challenges of African immigrant entrepreneurs in South Africa, most findings draw from male-dominated populations, with minimal information on their female counterparts. A phenomenological design was adopted for this study. Ten successful female African immigrant entrepreneurs operating in Johannesburg were selected. The study investigated their personal characteristics, entrepreneurial behaviour and business practices. Perceptions on doing business in South Africa, and the main challenges they faced as immigrants, were evaluated. The data revealed that most of the female African immigrants who launched business ventures were initially driven by necessity and that courage, resilience, hard work and social skills, were required for successful businesses. Many of these entrepreneurs had difficulty obtaining the business permit required to open business bank accounts. This calls for more business-friendly immigration policies towards African female entrepreneurs, amongst other recommendations. This paper brings a new gender perspective which was missing from existing research on African Immigrant entrepreneurship in South Africa.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error