I run a small construction business and want to expand but lack...

I run a small construction business and want to expand but lack the know-how and funds. Please help?

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The Gauteng Partnership Fund (GPF) runs and incubation programme called Entrepreneur Empowerment Development Fund (EEFP).

This programme is designed to train entrepreneurs to become property developers in the affordable rental market and assist them with funding to get projects started.

The GPF and National Housing Finance Corporation (NHFC) have a core funding agreement that assists companies with project funding, although this is a loan not a grant.

Where companies ordinarily don’t qualify for bank loans and are thus hamstrung with their development, the GPF is able to provide flexible loans with much lower interest rates.

Conditions for application

The programme is aimed at empowering black property entrepreneurs who have to date been held back from entering the market due to historical disadvantages, lack of skill, equity, and insufficient cash flow.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • 100% BEE
  • Be a registered legal entity
  • Have a valid tax clearance certificate
  • Company and shareholders must have clear credit records
  • Must demonstrate an ability to put together a proposal based on the GPF framework
  • Identify a project in an area identified by municipalities for development. The proposed project must cater for low-income people, be well serviced by amenities and have a minimum of 15 housing units.

Once accepted into the programme the GPF will provide mentors, assist with funding and putting together a professional team. On completion of the programme, entrepreneurs will be able to apply for future projects under their own steam.

Contact information

For more information, call GPF’s investment officer, Vinolia Mashiane on +27 (0)11 685 6600 or email vinoliam@gpf.org.za. Alternatively, visit the GPFs website. Every year an open invitation is extended for applications. The 2012 call for applications began the first week of September and closes the last week of October.

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