With the country’s increasing rate of unemployment, especially amongst the youth, it is incredible to see that more and more young South Africans are taking risks and starting their own businesses. One such individual who decided to risk it all and tap into the food business by opening his own eatery, is model and photographer Tharollo Kabelo Dibakoane (24).
Originally from Buffelshoek (in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga) and now based in Pretoria, Dibakoane opened LA HALA GOOD FOOD (named after ‘Hala’, his late brother’s nickname) in September this year.
Located in Atterigedeville, La Hala is a fast and casual restaurant that offers nothing but good vibes and good food. Mainly serving fast food, the menu consists of meals such as burgers, grilled chicken wings, hot dogs, salad and sphatlo (kota) and chips – which Dibakoane prepares with the help of two friends.
What he deems as one of his draw cards is how he strives to treat his customers equally and goes to the extreme to make sure that they leave his restaurant satisfied; so that they will not hesitate to visit again. It also helps that the recipes for his scrumptious meals are hard to beat!
As a young entrepreneur, Dibakoane says that his family and friends have been very supportive in his journey. Being raised by a single mother and his grandmother has taught him a great deal in life.
Citing ugogo as his greatest inspiration for this business venture, he says that she has been into the business of selling fruits and vegetables for over 30 years – making sure that he and his siblings have pocket money for school. Therefore, it was no coincidence that he followed suit.
His mother however, being an overprotective parent was uncomfortable with his ambitions.
“She’s always against my ideas when I want to embark in huge risks. She’s conditioned to keep me from falling and getting hurt. That’s the love of a parent,” Dibakoane says.
Although huge business risks are capable of yielding great success, they are also met with many challenges. One of the greatest has been a lack of finances but the young entrepreneur says he refuses to stop searching for solutions. He points out that as an entrepreneur, the pressure comes when you want to outsmart your competitors, especially in this sector.
Asked what has been the biggest mistake he has made thus far, Dibakoane mentioned that it was investing in and depending on other people because it made him forget that he is the only one responsible for turning his life around.
“I stopped making excuses of which had delayed my progress. Mistakes offer us a powerful way to learn and grow.” he says.
Follow him on social media. Instagram: @tharolloKabelo & Facebook: Tharollo Kabelo Dibakoane
~ Thabile Shange