Just before building our current primary residence to settle down in the Golf and Bushveld Estate , I felt I had worked extremely hard and had been hurt deeply for much of my life, that the only thing that could restore my soul was either a new Mercedes Benz or a Porsche Panamera- which I affectionately call a Porsche Panana. I felt I DESERVED it! We ultimately settled for a Mercedes Benz AMG.
Did I need it? No.
Did I want it? A big YES. It was instant gratification which was heavy on fuel and one (1) run flat tyre cost close to R10 000.00 to replace if my memory serves me well.
During the construction process, we struggled mainly with sand as the place was far out “tussen voël gesang en Bosveld bomme.” Hubstar searched around and finally discovered a sand and stone quarry close to the Bushveld. He made arrangements with an old business man who had old 10m3 Tipper trucks “Matipane”, that stood by the side of the road looking for business. So we would buy sand directly from the quarry and the old man’s old “Matipane” would go collect it and deliver it for us at a fee. It went as smooth as a breeze.
We had left-over building material which we were going to discard as rubble. One of the most successful developers in the area approached us to request the left over building material which he would collect and transport at his own cost. It was a kind of a symbiotic process as he would get rid of the rubble for free and he would use it elsewhere. Naturally, in our conversation he mentioned that all the modern architectural style houses were being developed by himself. Aaaah! There is an opportunity. I asked him if he could buy sand from us (my mind already working over-time, thinking about the quarry and the old man’s old Matipane.)
It worked like a charm. He was so happy with the service that he started referring other people he knew to us. My phone rang like crazy.
We got greedy: What a mistake!!!
We made the old man an offer to buy his old Matipane. Impulsively SOLD the Merc and used that money to buy an old Matipane…
Oh boy were we in for a ride. That Matipane broke just three (3) weeks after taking ownership of it. Sand orders were pilling up. The Matipane broke every week thereafter because of the backlog of sand orders.
That business venture was a complete fail at the end because to top it off, some guy rented a piece on farm land close to the Estate and also started supplying sand.
Mercedes Benz: Gone
Matipane: A broken burden
Aaaah! Lesson learned. Recovery came from that experience. We made wiser decisions post that of buying a fleet of Bakkies which generate income every month and keep other people employed and their families fed.
1. Greed is bad: it is okay when risk is shared and everyone gets a fair piece of the pie.
2. Rather take cash in-hand and buy an asset which will generate money for you than an instant gratification liability which will make you lose money.
May your cup overflow so much that you cannot contain it…
Tebogo F. Raphakgadi
Tebogo.F Raphakgadi is an innovative entrepreneur currently involved, actively and as an investor, in businesses in the following industries:
Property Development & Investment, Coal Mining, Transport & Logistics, and the innovative Motsetserepe Hardbody Chicken. She is a featured blogger at Quality Growth International.