Omphile Mpshe says there is nothing better than running his own health-food shop
"Every time a plate or a cup breaks, it's like my own heart is breaking with it because now the cost of replacing it is for my expense."
This is the biggest difference between being a manager of a business and running your own shop, says Omphile Mpshe, a joint venture partner of a Kauai store in Daytona.
Mpshe, 28, started his career with the health-food chain as a third store manager in Kauai's Sandton City outlet in 2002.
Today he owns a 49percent stake in the Daytona branch and in November he will become a partial owner of a second shop, which is due to open in Benmore Gardens.
Mpshe is no stranger to being a business owner. When he was in grade 11, he partnered his mother in a catering business, which is still going strong today.
After matric, Mpshe, who had always being passionate about the hospitality industry, won a bursary that took him to Malaysia where he studied hotel management.
Upon his return he joined a golf and country estate where he worked his way up from being one of the kitchen staff to being a food and beverage manager before leaving to join Kauai.
Kauai has entered into partnership with state-owned financier Industrial Development Corporation. Under the agreement, the franchise will sell a portion of the business to its employees who have proven their excellence over three years.
Geli Briolas, operations director at Kauai's head office, says: "We want to help employees who would, on their own, be unable to get their own shop."
Mpshe says: "Nothing feels better than running my own shop and the stability that comes with it,"