The Department of Trade and Industry (the DTI)
The DTI is responsible for implementing most of government’s business-related policies, including that of small business promotion. The services that the DTI offers are aimed at industrial development, export development, broadening participation in the economy and the development of small businesses.
Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda)
Seda provides business development support to small enterprises ranging from start-ups to well established businesses. Many useful services are offered in partnership with specialised providers in the small enterprise support industry. Entrepreneurs and potential entrepreneurs may approach Seda to gain access to the business support services they would otherwise not be able to afford.
Potential entrepreneurs who are thinking of starting a business may apply to attend one of Seda’s many training programmes; while business owners who are at the stage of planning to expand and are in need of specialised support may apply for Seda to sponsor between 60% and 90% of the fees of an approved service provider.
It is not only independent business owners who may approach Seda – specific programmes are geared towards cooperatives and franchisees too. Seda also offers tender advice, networking and business linkages opportunities, technical support, export readiness assessment and productivity improvement.
To qualify for support, the entrepreneur must be 18 years or older, be able to run the business on a full-time basis, and have a valid South African Identify Document. The applicant must also pass credit checks and provide proof of residence.
Small Enterprise Finance Agency (Sefa)
Sefa is the government’s primary small business funding agency, which was launched recently as a result of the merger between agencies such as Khula and Samaf. Sefa’s role is to promote the growth and the survival of small businesses through business financing.
To qualify for financing from Sefa an entrepreneur must be a South African citizen with a valid Identity Document. The business must be registered and have a fixed physical address. The entrepreneur must own at least 50% of the business and manage the business. All the supporting documentation must be provided to meet Sefa’s loan application criteria, including a business plan which shows the ability to repay the loan. The entrepreneur must also provide personal and credit references.
Sefa does not support tobacco, liquor, gambling or sex trade, armaments, speculative real estate, leverage buy-out funds or any business involved in illegal trades, nor political organisations, people under debt review, or any business that have directors who are un-rehabilitated insolvents.
National Empowerment Fund (NEF)
The NEF offers different types of funding in order to provide for different needs of business owners. The NEF supports black entrepreneurs and businesses by making various types of funds in different sectors available to the entrepreneurs.
To qualify for funding the applicant must be 18 years or older, the business must be economically viable and must not be involved in illegal practices, tobacco or gambling. The entrepreneur must be a 50% or more share holder and be operationally involved in the business, and be a previously disadvantaged South African with a valid South African ID, credit checks, and proof of residence. The applicant must also submit an application form and a business plan.
National Youth Development Agency (NYDA)
The NYDA supports youth between the ages 14 and 35 through various programmes. The following services are available to young entrepreneurs: career information and guidance, mentorship, skills training, entrepreneurial development and support, loan funding, health awareness programmes and involvement in sport.
For more information:
Telephone: 080 052 5252
Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC)
The CIPC was established and launched in 2004 after the merger of the Office of Companies and Intellectual Property Enforcement (OCIPE) and the Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO).
The CIPC also increases awareness and knowledge of company and intellectual property laws, this also includes opportunities for business entities and intellectual property rights holders to drive growth and sustainability, as well as the knowledge of the potential of these laws in promoting the broader policy objectives of government. The CIPC’s role is also to help businesses to take the necessary steps to visibly, effectively and efficiently monitor and enforce compliance with the laws of the CIPC administers.
Limpopo Business Support Agency (Libsa)
Libsa supports businesses from Limpopo province through a range of information sources such as a quarterly newsletter, monthly information sheets and occasional booklets; as well as by offering business support services to entrepreneurs.
Business support and training services are offered in the following sectors: mining, tourism, agriculture, manufacturing, construction and information communication technology. All non-financial support services are offered free of charge, with an emphasis on assisting with challenges in marketing, distribution and processing of agriculture products.
Limpopo Economic Development Enterprise (LimDev)
As part of LimDev’s economic development objectives, it provides finance to small busineses within the Limpopo province. It is also active in housing finance, mining and public transport.
One of LimDev’s programmes, the Business Launchpad, is aimed at identifying small business ideas and existing businesses with potential, andproviding them with support, training and exposure to help them to grow.
For more information:
Telephone: 015 633 4700
The North West Development Corporation (NWDC)
The NWDC offers services to small businesses of the North West Province by assisting them with access to finance, business advice as well business mentorship and coaching.
To qualify for these funds the entrepreneur or small business owner must be registered as a Sole Proprietor, Close Corporation, Partnership or Company. The business must have a valid tax clearance certificate from Sars, a business profile, a business plan, securities (such as the deed of grant, title deed insurance policy, investments surety-ship document or the cession of progress payment) and supporting documents like proof of residents, certified copy of ID document, copy of contract and 3 months bank statements.
For more information:
Telephone: 018 381 3663
Royal Bafokeng Enterprise Holdings (RBEH)
Royal Bafokeng Enterprise Holdings is a community-based investment company which strives to improve economic well-being by investing in businesses that will generate returns and by supporting small businesses. The RBEH teamed up with The Business Place in Phokeng, to ensures that the small business support services offered by The Business Place reaches many start-up, very small, survivalist and micro businesses.
Free State Development Corporation (FDC)
The FDC is the official economic development, trade and investment corporation for the Free State. Funding (such as business loans, equity and investments), as well as business development (which includes training, coaching, mentoring and partner support services) are some of the products and services the FDC delivers to small businesses.
The following incentives are also offered by the FDC, subsidised rental rates, rental holidays ofup to three months and special incentives and discounts for BEE companies or individuals.
Mpumalanga Economic Growth Agency (Mega)
Mega supports qualifying businesses and individuals from Mpumalanga, who’ve been previously disadvantaged, with funding for housing, agricultural development and business growth. Loans range from R10thousand to R3million.
For more information:
Telephone: 013 752 2440
The Business Place (TBP)
The Business Place aims to offer new ways of meeting the support requirements of entrepreneurs. Several small business support centres have been established across South Africa. At these centres entrepreneurs have access to mentors who provides entrepreneurs with one-on-one support in starting or growing their businesses. Entrepreneurs can also get access to business opportunities, relevant business information and resources.
The following TBP centres are currently in operation: Alexandra, eKapa, Gabarone, Joburg, Kliptown, Metsweding, Philippi and Phokeng.