A thematic analysis of entrepreneurial experiences in KwaZulu-Natal: a qualitative study.
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The purpose of this study was to examine the opportunities and challenges experienced by entrepreneurs in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. A review of the literature indicates that there are many challenges and barriers experienced by entrepreneurs. Findings from this research coincide with those of studies done in South Africa that highlight the challenges of new business owners, with regard to barriers and difficulties they face. This research draws on two entrepreneurial theories, namely the Action Regulation Theory and the Discovery Theory to facilitate an understanding of the entrepreneur‟s experiences. A qualitative analysis was selected as the most appropriate research design. This research examined the narratives of eight entrepreneurs that have been in business in the KwaZulu-Natal area between 0-5 years, in the form of semi-structured in-depth interviews carried out individually. A thematic analysis was conducted; the results revealed six themes that encompass the entrepreneur‟s experiences, namely family influence, education, competencies, resilience, challenges and the desire to become an entrepreneur. The participants were all unique in their businesses and the manner in which they conducted their businesses. They had, however, experienced similar barriers and challenges as entrepreneurs.