Industry Data

Direct selling industry positively contributes to SA economy with R7.8 billion in sales

The direct-selling industry positively impacts SA’s economy as its resilience and growth see an achievement of R7.8 billion in sales, all whilst other South African industries continue to struggle under increased financial stress.

Financial stress has taken a toll on South Africans, record high food and fuel prices, an inflation rate at a 13-year high and rising interest rates, both middle- and low-income earners countrywide are struggling. According to a Sanlam Savings survey, 78% of South Africans are most concerned by financial worries and 60% by the state of the economy.

At DSA’s 3rd Virtual Convention, “We are one of the very few industries that can boast success in an ever-struggling economy. We’re pleased to share that we have close to 650k direct sellers and more importantly, direct seller earnings was R2.1 billion – this is no small amount going back to the local economy.”, shared Rajesh Parshotam, chairperson of DSA of South Africa.

Globally, DSA of SA celebrates the 128 million direct sellers and the direct selling industry that recorded over 186 billion US dollars in sales. Remarkable sales results given the many challenges in the global marketplace from the war to energy crisis through to inflationary pressures experienced worldwide.

On the local front, an exciting development, for the first time ever in the history of the DSA, we have made significant progress in expanding the conversation with government from lobbying for legislation and regulations to economic development where we will partner with various levels of government to co-create a plan for economic development in townships where people can have access to an income opportunity by owning a business of their own through one of our member companies.

Parshotam said, “Increases in the worldwide number of direct sellers and sales figures are clear indicators that more people are looking to our industry as the solution. Direct sellers are getting younger as more look for trusted income opportunities, with over 62% of local direct sellers below the age of 45 and a majority of 38% under the age of 35.”

We are excited about sharing this wonderful opportunity of direct selling, of entrepreneurship and owning a business of your own. Our challenge is to remain laser focused on ensuring that the direct selling industry through the DSA is regarded as a legitimate income opportunity for all irrespective of background, a task we’ve undertaken for the last 50 years!

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The Direct Selling Association of South Africa:


2022 marks 50 years of the Direct Selling Association of South Africa (DSA), a national business association founded in 1972 representing member direct selling companies that distribute goods and services through independent contractors (also referred to as direct sellers, distributors, consultants, managers, sales agents, and independent business operators, among others) directly to consumers, away from a fixed retail location.

Direct Selling member companies provide an entrepreneurial opportunity where South Africans can earn an income through a professional distribution channel while supported strongly by the direct selling company they are affiliated to.

The term “direct selling” encompasses direct selling, multi-level marketing (MLM) (also referred to as network marketing) and referral marketing.

Every DSA member company pledges to abide by the terms as set out in the industry Code of Conduct as a condition of admission and continuing membership of the Direct Selling Association of South Africa.

All direct sellers (independent contractors) are bound by the DSA’s Code when representing a DSA member company.

The Code has been developed within the framework and requirements of the World Federation of Direct Selling Associations (WFDSA) Code of Conduct.

The DSA provides a forum for Members to network with industry colleagues and provides many benefits.