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SMMEs Given A Leg Up

The City of Johannesburg in partnership with its banker the Standard Bank of South Africa; have approved a R250 multi-million rand Working Capital Fund (WCF) to bolster entrepreneurs.





The ambitious move will support the City’s economic transformation initiatives such as the SMME Economic Transformation Programmes. Small businesses and entrepreneurs contribute to the creation of many jobs in the country.

The boost for small businesses in Johannesburg comes ahead of the City hosting the (GEC) in 2017.

Kgamanyane Maphologela, Group Finance’s Director of Customer Communications says the strategic objective of the Working Capital Fund is to contribute to socio-economic development within the City.

“This initiative will amongst others, promote entrepreneurship and develop enterprises to ultimately become mature businesses that can sustain themselves in the long term. A central principle of the Working Capital Fund’s funding philosophy is the collaboration between Standard Bank and the City of Johannesburg to find innovative equity funding solutions to meet the unique requirements of the City’s SMMEs and Co-ops,” says Maphogela.

The Working Capital Fund will focus mainly in the following sectors: Information Communication and Technology (ICT), Manufacturing, Retail, Health, Transport, Property/ Construction and Green Infrastructure and Sustainable projects.

Maphologela says however, the sector focus will be dependent on the needs analysis to be undertaken by the City together with Standard Bank.

Related: How to Write a Funding Proposal

The Working Capital Fund will have the following investment criteria:

  • The entity must meet the definition of small enterprise
  • The SMME must be based and operating in the City of Johannesburg
  • Legally registered entities and compliant with all the legal requirements of a registered entity
  • The entities must be up to date with their municipal rates and taxes as well as with SARS
  • There should be significant potential for growth (in sales, profits and shareholder value) based on a clear strategy and scalable business model
  • The management team should ideally have a successful track record within the relevant industry and/or in bringing new products to market
  • Funds invested may be used for asset acquisition and working capital
  • The entity must have a legally binding supplier contract with the City.

The Business Development Suppliers have been appointed and will assist the potential beneficiaries with amongst others:

  • Provide technical, financial and business development support
  • Assess the needs of the beneficiaries by means of technical and financial evaluation process
  • Ensure that careful financial management is undertaken so that cash flow is effectively controlled and agreed profits are realized
  • Assist beneficiaries to meet milestones set out in the contracts with the City
  • Provide technical assistance to ensure that all aspects of the supply chain are cost effectively managed
  • Assist each beneficiary to complete applications for banking facilities
  • Comply with all training requirements imposed by the Bank under FICA to the full extent required
  • Prepare and submit monthly reports and information reasonably required by the Bank and the City.

Applications for potential beneficiaries to be considered will be done through the Business Development Suppliers (BDS).

Related: New Ways SMEs Can Find Funding

COJ and SBSA Financing Contractors – FAQ’s


1. What is the relationship between City of Johannesburg and Standard Bank?

The City of Johannesburg in collaboration with Standard Bank is proud to announce a R250mill Fund open to Contractors of City of Johannesburg small businesses.

2. What is the purpose of the R250m Fund?

To assist Contractors with working capital to fulfil their contractual obligations to City of Johannesburg and their municipal owned entities.

3. What is the qualifying criteria for the R250m fund?

You have to have a valid contract or purchase order with COJ and any of COJ municipal owned entities in order to qualify for financing.

4.  Who is 2020 Insight?

Standard bank have appointed 2020 Insight to assist the contractors with the finance application. 2020 Insight have been authorised to act on behalf of Standard Bank in terms of collection of documents and information. In addition 2020 Insight have also been authorised to manage the flow of funds using Standard Bank’s Banks Third Party Fund Administration account (TPFA).

5. Do we require a deposit or security to apply for finance?

Each application is dealt with on its own merit. Security or a deposit is not a pre-condition but the minimum security that will be taken is limited suretyship, cession of contract monies and cession of TPFA. If additional security is required, each application will be looked at on merit.

Related: DTI Funding

6. What is the TPFA account and how does it work?

This is a SBSA product that will assist the contractor as well as 2020 insight to control the flow of funds. It is like having a back office to make payments and receive funds on the Contractors behalf. Loan funds and contract monies due will be paid into the same account.

7. What is the process?

Once all documents are received by 2020 Insight; they will prepare and submit an application to Standard Bank. Standard Bank will take approximately 5 working days to get an approval or decline.

If approved thereafter normal business process of securities have to be taken in and signed by client. Pay-out can be expected in approximately 2-4 weeks from approval, depending on contractor’s fulfilment of conditions of approval.

8. Will contractors qualify for the funding if they have a judgement or default against their name?  

We will look at all applications as well as contractors with judgements or defaults. This will depend entirely on the default and if arrangements have been made to repay the default.

9. What is the interest rate? 

This will depend entirely on risk and will vary from applicant to applicant. The standard admin fee is 2% of total facilities; this is besides an interest rate charge.

10. Do I have to be a SBSA customer to apply for finance?

No, any Contractor that has a valid contract with the City or municipal owned entities qualifies.

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Entrepreneur Today

How SMEs Could Cash-In On Black Friday And Cyber Monday

Provided that SMEs prepare ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there is an opportunity to leverage off the global hype, where some simple alignment to the theme can result in big benefit without much investment into promotion.




Jesse Weinberg

Provided that SMEs prepare ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there is an opportunity to leverage off the global hype, where some simple alignment to the theme can result in big benefit without much investment into promotion.

In the midst of low consumer and business confidence, tapping into the opportunities presented by these two days could contribute significantly to boosting the cashflow of SMEs.

“To benefit from Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the two big focus points would be the thinking around what the business will offer to customers and how it will promote the offerings ahead of the days. This allows customers to plan their purchases ahead of time, which also ensures traffic for the SME,” says Jesse Weinberg, Head of the SME Customer Segment at FNB Business.

Related: How To Prepare Your Business To Win Big On Black Friday

Weinberg provides useful tips for small businesses to help SMEs take full advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday:

  • Use social media – Businesses should make full use of social media as a tool to support their offers on these days. A powerful tactic seen recently is for businesses to actually ask customers what they might like to see as a special offering by the businesses to assess the potential demand from the market.
  • Gauge customer appetite – A simple poll survey offers great insights into what customers want. The real trick for business on these two days is to ensure that the special deals on offer will actually be desired by customers, especially if the business plans on taking-on extra stock in for these specials.
  • Pre-promotion of specials – Another powerful example of using social media would be to communicate the specials that you plan on running on these days to create sufficient awareness and demand by persuading customers to plan their wish lists, with the idea that the special the business wants to run will be on their list.
  • Stock management – Businesses should avoid over-buying with the hopes of profiting from the additional demand. Getting in touch with customers may help the business buy the most desirable stock to ensure it sells.

SME’s should take full advantage of special global trade days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday – it’s like being able to plug your specials into someone else’s marketing campaign for no extra charge,” concludes Weinberg.

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Entrepreneur Today

Leading South Africans Inspire Guests At The Standard Bank Business Breakfast In Association With Jacaranda FM

A full house of business owners, professionals and entrepreneurs emerged inspired from today’s Standard Bank Business Breakfast, in association with Jacaranda FM, held at the Montecasino Ballroom in Johannesburg.




Standard Bank Business Breakfast

A full house of business owners, professionals and entrepreneurs emerged inspired from today’s Standard Bank Business Breakfast, in association with Jacaranda FM, held at the Montecasino Ballroom in Johannesburg.

The latest event in the ongoing Business Breakfast series featured a star-studded line-up of South African leaders and achievers in various fields sharing insights and motivational learnings. Attendees from the corporate world and the Jacaranda FM audience drew inspiration and shared networking opportunities as the speakers talked about their respective journeys to success and what kept them motivated.

“This morning’s speakers are all examples of South African excellence,” said Jacaranda FM General Manager Kevin Fine.

“They showed grit and dedication in overcoming hurdles to succeed in their fields and inspire others to do the same. We’re glad to join forces with Standard Bank to help them connect with our audience and to give our listeners insight into Standard Bank’s business offerings.”

The audience remained glued to their seats throughout the morning, as the speakers gave their views on life, what motivates them and lessons that can help business people excel in their respective sectors.

Speakers at the breakfast were principled political leader Dr Makhosi Khoza, Springbok rugby captain, Warren Whiteley, Astrophysicist and Mars One candidate, Adriana Marais and philanthropist and businesswoman Basetsana Kumalo.


Dr Makhozi Khoza speaks at the Standard Bank Business Breakfast in association with Jacaranda FM

Dr Khoza spoke on her political and business life path, and the importance of speaking truth to power. She encouraged South Africans to accept that “none but ourselves – the good men and women of this country – can save SA”. She ended her talk with an enigmatic reference to the need for “a new vehicle to take us to a prosperous society”.

Related: 10 Successful SA Women Entrepreneurs’ Top Advice On Balancing Work And Family


Martin Bester, Jacaranda FM breakfast show host interviews Warren Whiteley at the Standard Bank Business Breakfast in association with Jacaranda FM

In conversation with Jacaranda FM morning drive show host Martin Bester, Whiteley spoke about the need for cohesion, commitment, continuity and morale in sport and in life. He explained how the successful Super Rugby team saw purpose as more important than winning.

“Our purpose is to inspire people through what we do on the field and off it,” he said.


Dr Adriana Marais speaks at the Standard Bank Business Breakfast in association with Jacaranda FM

Dr Marais is one of the 100 finalists to be part of Mars One, the first manned space expedition to the red planet. She emphasised the power of inspiration, reminding the audience how the Apollo moon-landings had inspired a generation of young people to embark on science careers, which led to advances in technology and communications. She explained how the innovations that solved resource scarcity in space could be used on earth to improve inefficiency and to resolve resource disputes.

Related: 13 Female Entrepreneurs Rising To The Top


Basetsana Khumalo speaks at the Standard Bank Business Breakfast in association with Jacaranda FM

In her address, Basetsana Kumalo reflected on her journey from Soweto schoolkid to Miss South Africa 1994, to trail-blazing businesswoman and serial entrepreneur. Having founded TV production companies, resources ventures, travel and property firms, she said her guiding wisdom was to “show up and raise your hand”.

“Challenge the status quo”, she said. “Resist gender stereotypes and help others. Your success can create a generational legacy for those that come after you.”

Jacaranda FM Marketing Manager, Minisha Patel, said the breakfast was a great success, “We offer a full spectrum of informative and entertaining content, and sharing business knowledge is part of that. It was great to see a packed house and so much passionate engagement during and after the event. Clearly our speakers’ messages resonate with the Jacaranda FM audience.”

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Entrepreneur Today

SEDA Launches A Centre For Entrepreneurship And Rapid Incubator In Upington

The Centres for Entrepreneurship (CfE) and Rapid Incubators form a strong link between institutions of higher learning and enterprise development.





The Centres for Entrepreneurship (CfE) and Rapid Incubators form a strong link between institutions of higher learning and enterprise development. It is in this spirit that Deputy Minister of Small Business Development, Ms Nomathemba November will be launching the Vaal University of Technology (VUT) CfE/Rapid Incubator in Upington.

This centre will service graduates from the university and broadly young entrepreneurs from Upington and neighbouring towns such as Keimoes, Kakamas and Groblershoop.

Related: Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda)

The VUT CfE and Rapid Incubator centre strategically located to focus on predominant economic sectors within the area they are located. The VUT centre will focus on renewable energy, agriculture and tourism sectors.

These sectors are key the local economic activities within the Upington area with a potential of accommodating new entrants in particular graduates with innovative ideas who would like to take advantage of opportunities within the area. These are young people who are going to be developed into entrepreneurs through CfE/Rapid Incubator programme.

The programme is designed to develop viable innovative ideas into small enterprises after 18 months.

The CfE/Rapid Incubator is divided into two parts, the first part is CfE which is six months theoretical training programme focusing on business entrepreneurship training, innovation and idea generation training and product conceptualisation.

Related: Funding And Financial Assistance For SA Women Entrepreneurs

The second part of the programme is the 12 month rapid incubation open only to qualifying selected candidates. It is during this period that actual product development and refinement takes place.

During this period the commercialisation of the product entails advanced sector specific technical training, seed funding and other business support also takes place. After the 18 months the SMME is expected to be ready for the open market and will graduate from the programme.

The CfE is able to accommodate up to 60 clients but only around 20 graduates are selected at enterprise start-up week for rapid incubation by the incubation team and Seda. This is the eighth rapid incubator to be launched out of the nine planned across the country.

Related: Tender Process For The Tough-Minded

Other provinces which have launched are: KwaZulu Natal (Esayidi TVET College); Northern Cape (Northern Cape Rural TVET College); Limpopo (Vhembe TVET College); Western Cape (False Bay TVET College); Free State (Motheo TVET); Free State (Goldfields TVET) and North West (Orbit TVET College).

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