Information on Funding Sources | Red Tape Reduction

Information on Funding Sources

Funding Partners and Key Qualification Criteria


Mandate and key services

Investment type

Qualification criteria to access funding

Investment range

The National Empowerment Fund (NEF): Women Empowerment Fund 

0861 843 633 

The NEF Women Empowerment Fund is aimed at accelerating the provision of funding to businesses owned by black women. The funding starts from R250 000 to R75 million across a range of sectors, for start-ups, expansions and equity acquisition purposes.

Repayable loan

The first 6 months will bear no interest;

After the first 6 months, the interest rate will be fixed at 1.5% for the remainder of the term;

Up to 5 years to repay the loan, and longer for property transactions;

The NEF will provide incubation support, entrepreneurial training,
online business-planning and
mentorship support, and

The DTIC WEF portion will be blended with standard NEF funding.

Majority ownership, control and management by black women;

Must be registered and recognised under South African law (company, close corporation, co-operative, collective investment scheme, NPO’s and community trusts);

Be registered for tax, be in good standing with SARS and have a valid tax clearance certificate;

Be involved in primary, secondary and tertiary sectors of the economy (with the exclusion of purely alcohol businesses, purely tobacco businesses, arms and ammunitions and related sectors);

Be located in rural areas and/or townships;

Sustain and create employment;

Have a viable businesses case, and

Be a start-up, an existing business seeking expansionary or acquisition capital.

R250 000 up to R10 million for
each transaction

Department of Tourism & the National Empowerment Fund (NEF): Tourism Transformation Fund (TTF)

011 305 8000 or 086 184 3633

Facilitate transformation within the tourism sector by providing access to funding support through a combination of debt, equity and grant funding to black investors in the tourism sector;

Develop the tourism sector by providing financial support to eligible projects with preference for projects that
stimulate empowerment, destination development, job creation and tourism skills development;

Reduce the funding gap that may exist between the prospective investor’s own contribution and the conditionally approved financing by the NEF; and

Encourage the development of
innovative, commercially viable and sustainable tourism projects.

Grant funding 

TTF funding applications must adhere to the following: 

Submission of a duly completed and signed NEF application form and TTF checklist together with related supporting documents as per NEF requirements;

Proven commercial viability and sustainability as per the NEF due diligence;

The Enterprise must be at least majority (51%) black-owned;

The enterprise must be black management controlled;

Shareholders must be operationally involved in the business;

Enterprises must be registered as a legal entity in South Africa in terms of South African law;

The enterprise must either be a black-owned Exempted Micro Enterprise (EME) or black-owned Qualifying Small Enterprise (QSE) in terms of the Amended Tourism Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) Sector Code.

Enterprises that provide services to tourists as its direct clients.

The grant funding is applicable to greenfield and brownfield transactions in the tourism sector;

An applicant may be required to contribute a reasonable percentage of the total funding applied for as own contribution10% of the total funding application.

Up to R5 million 

Department of Trade, Industry and Competition & the National Empowerment Fund (NEF): Black Business Manufacturing Fund (BBMF) 

011 305 800 or 0861 843 633

To promote manufacturing among black SMEs;

To assist black-owned SMEs to build optimum capacity that enables them to deliver quality products to their markets;

To stimulate and grow manufacturing capacity by increasing the number of black-owned businesses in the
sector, and

Assist black-owned businesses to participate meaningfully in the manufacturing value chain and
access to the markets through NEF’s non-financial support programmes.

Repayable commercial loans 

Loan duration: maximum of 60 months (5 years)

Moratorium: will not exceed 12 month on both interest and capital. However, extension of the moratorium will be considered where the implementation and commissioning of the
plant is more than 12 months.

The main focus of the Fund will be in the value chain of the manufacturing sector, targeting
black-owned SMEs.

To qualify for BBMF, companies must be: 

Majority owned by black people - minimum of 51% black ownership;

Registered and recognised under the South African laws;

Either private companies (Pty Ltd), close corporations or co-operatives;

Registered for tax and in good standing with SARS, and have a valid tax clearance certificate;

Involved in the manufacturing value chain (including making and processing of goods with some sort of value add to products;

Create sustainable jobs;

Commercially viable, demonstrating their ability to repay the loan.

Looking for funding for the acquisition of plant, equipment and machinery; improvement and upgrading of manufacturing processes; raw materials working capital; costs associated with delivering under export contracts;

Looking for funding for the importation of plant and equipment (provided that the business can demonstrate that such plant and equipment cannot be sourced locally), and

Looking for funding for the importation of raw materials provided such raw materials cannot be sourced locally.

The Fund will not support businesses that are involved in the following areas:

  • Trading of goods (buying and selling) without any value add; 
  • Provision or creation of services;
  • Importation of finished goods, and
  • Manufacturing of tobacco products.
The total fund is valued at R150 million


087 943 2381

Real time access to business funding for Small medium enterprises (SMEs). No paperwork, collateral, or hidden fees.

SME business loans

Minimum 12 months trading history, R500 000 annual turnover

Up to R2 million

CDI Capital

021 461 1488

Business innovation, fast-track growth, and job creation to build a stronger, transformed South African economy through securing investment funds from the public and private sector.

Grants and working capital loans

Early stage Innovation Technology Solutions.
Growth-stage businesses ready to create jobs.

Early stage innovation grants up to R800 000

Growth stage business grants R21 000 - R1 million

R500 000 working capital loans

Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA)

021 487 3640

To assist small enterprises through implementing the government’s business strategy; design and implement a standard and common national delivery network for small enterprise development; and integrate government-funded small enterprise support agencies across all tiers of government.

Non-financial small business development support

SEDA does not do funding

SEDA does not do investment

Business Partners Ltd

021 464 3600

A risk finance company providing customised financial solutions for formal SMEs in South Africa and selected African countries.

An innovative and internationally accepted risk financing model as a financing solution for SMEs in
developing countries. Funding, supporting and mentoring entrepreneurs with in-depth knowledge of the SME sector and insights into challenges facing independent businesses.

Individualised financing solutions using shareholders loans accounts,
equity, revenue sharing and term loans.

Proposals are assessed on the viability of business, which is comprised of the business and the entrepreneur. All sectors of the economy are eligible (excluding lending activities, direct farming operations, underground mining, and non-profit organisations).

R500 000 to R50 million

Old Mutual Masisizane Fund

060 583 9919

SME business finance and Enterprise & Supplier Development mandate across various sectors including but not limited to Agribusiness, Franchising, Manufacturing, Tourism, Supply Chain (Contract based finance) and TMT.

The Fund supports high growth and job multiplying enterprises to promote inclusive economic growth, alleviate poverty and improve food security in South Africa.

Senior Debt (Preferred)


Wholesale funding

The Enterprise must be majority (at least 51%) Black South Africans or  naturalized South African owned

The enterprise must have clearly defined marketable products or services.

The business must primarily operate in South Africa

The enterprise must be a viable enterprise with the ability to meet its ongoing commitments

The business must be registered with the South African Revenue Services (SARS) and be compliant.

Minimum R500 000

Small Enterprise Finance Agency (SEFA)

021 418 0126

Fostering the establishment, development, and growth of SMMEs and co-operatives. Contributing towards poverty alleviation, job creation and economic growth.

Repayable interest-bearing loans

SEFA has various programmes servicing specific mandate. Qualifying criteria differs from programme to programme

Loan facility up to

R15 million (limited)

Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) 

021 421 4794

Finance the growth and expansion of private enterprises, development impact through job-rich industrialisation, contributing to an inclusive economy by funding black-owned and empowered companies, black industrialists, women, and youth-owned and empowered enterprises.

Funding for start-up and existing businesses;
Short-, medium-, and long-term loans,

senior debt, equity, quasi-equity, trade and bridging finance, guarantees and (in some cases) wholesale funding to intermediaries.

We list and foremost assess all applications on financial and economic merit. We assess the soundness of the financial, marketing, technical and management dimensions of a project or transaction. We require a business plan, at least two years of historical financials and latest management accounts. For start- ups a commercial business case with shareholder contribution.

We consider applications in mining, agriculture and agro-processing, manufacturing, energy, infrastructure, media and motion pictures and small businesses across these focus areas.

R1 million - R15 million for small business.

Funding can exceed R1 billion with board approval.

National Empowerment Fund  

021 431 4760

Provision of financial (loan funding) and non-financial support to black empowered businesses as well as the promotion of a culture of savings and investment among black people. 

Development Finance Institution

51% black-owned,
Black women empowerment,
Black managerial and operational involvement,
Commercial viability of the business. Job creation,
Specific product criteria (is provided to entrepreneurs during the engagements),
Location of the business (rural/urban/disadvantaged areas), community involvement,
compliance with all relevant laws and regulations, return on investment, an

R250,000 - R75 million

Retail Trade Funding


Funding SMEs with a different approach to traditional business loans. Retail Trade Funding links loan repayments to turnover that will match with the SME’s cashflow cycles.

SME funding (business loans)

Card machine and daily turnover

Up to R250 000

National Youth Development Agency


The NYDA mandate is derived from legislative frameworks such as the NYDA Act (54 of 2008), the National Youth Policy (2009-2014) and the draft Integrated Youth Development Strategy as adopted by the Youth Convention of 2006.

Grant funding

Youth between 18 35 years
Resident in South Africa.
Business Should Be 100% Youth owned.
Threshold 1 - Registered and unregistered (operational)
Threshold 2 - Registered and operational for <6 months)
Threshold 3 - Registered and operational for <24 months
Threshold 4 - Expansion stage Pty and cooperatives*

*for agriculture and technology related projects the max. threshold is R250,000.00

(Threshold submissions requirements applies)

Threshold 1 R1000 - R10 000

Threshold 2 R10 001 - R50 000

Threshold 3 R50 00 - R100 000 

Threshold 4 R100,001 – R200,000