After finding himself without a job, engineer Llewelyn Pillay refused to be a victim of circumstance. Marchelle Abrahams chats to him about being selected for the Young Entrepreneurs Global Exposure Program.

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work,” Colin Powell once said.

Engineering graduate Llewelyn Pillay (28) knows all about dreaming and then watching those aspirations fall apart before your very eyes. After working in the engineering sector for a number of years and then retrenched, KZN-born Pillay refused to become a victim of circumstance.

Instead he he fought hard to rediscover his dream of starting his own business, and through sheer determination and his refusal to be part of SA’s unemployment narrative, he finally put down roots. “I’ve faced many obstacles and have had countless doors shut in my face, but I still persevered,” says the young entrepreneur. “I literally went knocking on the doors of construction companies for work, until I finally landed a contract.”

But the nightmare was far from over. Big clients refusing to pay had led to cash-flow problems, until eventually he turned to his family for help. Finding his feet again, he made an oath to give back to his community by creating job opportunities for young South Africans.

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