The Fund addresses a significant gap in the funding of early stage businesses and is therefore highly developmental in nature and has set its objectives as the following: a. Increase access to finance to SMMEs with specific emphasis on those in the early stage the business cycle b. Promote and facilitate funding of innovation in key industry segments aligned to government’s industrial policy (priority sectors) c. Enhance financial inclusion by increasing access to finance for enterprises owned by targeted groups (women, youth, township and rural communities) d. Leverage private sector investment to small businesses; and e. Facilitate access to finance to accelerate transformation. The Fund will therefore operate in a risky segment where banks and private equity funds are reluctant to participate. The success of the Fund will be assessed against its mandate and effective delivery of measured outputs and other expected outcomes linked to the above-mentioned objectives.

SBIF will target early stages of the business life cycle:

  • Ideation;

  • Proof of concept;

  • Early stage market entry and

  •  Scale up.

A range of financial instruments will include debt, quasi-equity, mezzanine and conditional grants.


  • Have a minimum of 3 years relevant track record and demonstrate ability to leverage additional funds from elsewhere · Have systems, processes and credible loan administration system in place with a solid pipeline of SMMEs;

  • The funding must meet developmental impact targets; · Compliant with applicable regulations

  • Financially sound and sustainable; SMMEs

  • be a South African citizen;

  • be registered entity with a fixed physical address;

  • be registered within South Africa; 

  • be compliant with applicable legislation;

  • have a business plan that meets the requirements of sefa’s loan application criteria;

  • be the majority shareholder and the owner manager of the business;

  • have a valid Tax Clearance Certificate.


  •  Draft your Common Funding Template/Business Plan or proposal, and

  • Complete the sefa application form which can be downloaded from the sefa website at

  •  Submit this business plan together with the completed sefa application form and supporting documentation to your nearest sefa access point / or email it to sefa

Contact sefa Client Liaison Centre

T: 012 748 9600

F: 012 748 9791



Regional Offices

(+27) 12 394 3919

/   (+27) 860 663 7867

Fax: (+27) 861 843 384

Block G – 2nd Floor
77 Meintjies Street Sunnyside

©2019 by Department Small Business Development.