IDC’s R1bn boost for entrepreneurs

first_img1 September 2008The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has launched a R1-billion Transformation and Entrepreneurship Scheme, comprising five different funds as well as an investment and business support grant, to serve the financing and entrepreneurial needs of South Africa’s marginalised groups.The initiative is an umbrella scheme incorporating the Women’s Entrepreneurial Fund (with R400-million being made available for disbursement), the Equity Contribution Fund (with R150-million), the People with Disabilities Fund (with R50-million, as well as the existing IDC Development Fund for Workers (with R250-million) and the IDC Foundation Fund for Communities (with R150-million).“We are committed to creating sustainable economic development opportunities through the funding and promotion of enterprises and industries with a strong job creation element especially in SME and BEE transactions,” IDC chief executive Geoffrey Qhena said in a statement last week.The scheme, which will be managed by the IDC’s Risk Capital Facility unit, has been designed to facilitate the development of targeted marginalised entrepreneurs and enable them to access financing as well as serve as a propeller for new entrants into the formal sector entrepreneurial activity.Each of the five funds has its own qualifying criteria which have been clearly outlined in the information booklet.Investment criteria common to all five funds include a demonstration of economic viability and financial sustainability of the business, and that provisions are made for the employment of people with disabilities.In addition, funding provided will generally not be less than R1-million, while the operations of the applicant must fall within one of the sectors in which IDC investment activity occurs.Qhena said while setting a benchmark for development finance by investing in higher-risk projects, the scheme would complement existing funds provided by the IDC.The ring-fenced scheme also aims to act as a catalyst for the targeted entrepreneurs by providing high-risk and largely concessional capital for start-up businesses, acquisitions and expansions.“The scheme will develop marginalised entrepreneurs – it is also intended to have strong bias towards black women-owned enterprises,” he said.SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img

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