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Bheki Dube says that being born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, exposed him to
some of the city’s brightest and most innovative minds. He loved the exciting and beautiful sites which his city offered and this inspired him to start a tourism business.

At 16 years old he launched his first business, a walking tour company called Main
Street Walks. He says used this startup to to learn about hospitality and how to serve foreigners. Then, a few years later, he was able to launch Curiocity.

This is a network of African design hotels and hostels which attract tourists and local South Africans who are inquisitive about their cities. “Curiocity, however, is primarily driven by experiences; being able to merge my initial business with what Curiocity is today has led to a robust business model,” Dube says.

The hotels and hostels include rooms, bars and other entertainment areas. Visitors are also able to go on tours and visit culturally rich sites.

Summed up as a network of African design hostels and hotels, Curiocity aims to create and
share an authentic experience of the African continent with visitors, one city at a time.

“We want to connect the curious traveler to what’s exciting, inspiring and real in whichever
location we’re in,” Dube says.

There are eight Curiocity locations in and around Cape Town and Johannesburg and the group is set to expand soon. Dube has found sites in the Kruger National Park and in Durban.

Dube wants to open more hotels in Rosebank, central Johannesburg and The Garden Route of the Western Cape. He says access to funding has been the biggest obstacle of many that he’s had to overcome as an entrepreneur. It’s difficult to raise capital in an economy which isn’t growing nor creating jobs.

“It’s hard to secure capital for disruptive businesses within South Africa and convince the investment community of this concept, which is very new to South Africa,” he says.

Dube is passionate about tourism as a job creator. He received the I Do Tourism award from the Deputy
Tourism Minister, Mr Fish Mahlalela, in 2019.

“I’ve been carrying it for the last three years. It’s part of the Lilizela Tourism Awards, an initiative by the National Department of Tourism,” he says.

Dube hopes to expand to between 30 and 40 locations across the continent over the next five
to ten years and to unlock as many entrepreneurial collaborations with other young people as he can.

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