Youth-owned businesses benefit from R3-billion Partnership

A partnership between three state-owned agencies – the Industrial Development (IDC), the Small Enterprise Finance Agency (sefa) and the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) – has achieved marked successes in providing funding to youth-owned businesses.
Recognising the role that young people can play in the South African economy, particularly in job creation, the three institutions launched a R3-billion partnership in 2013. To date, over R200-million has been disbursed to businesses owned by young people.
The IDC has set aside R1-billion to fund youth-owned businesses. Funding is available at prime less 3% to businesses that will create jobs.
IDC’s Chief Executive Geoffrey Qhena says that it is important that young entrepreneurs take advantage of existing funding opportunities and play an active role in the advancement of the economy and social development.
“This partnership is a clear and firm commitment from the three entities that they will support young people as the youth have a critical role to play in tackling economic and unemployment challenges in South Africa,” says Qhena.
NYDA Chief Executive Khathu Ramukumba, says that obtaining finance from conventional commercial lenders is a very real challenge for young South Africans. 
“Often young aspiring entrepreneurs are rendered ineligible for funding due to their financial history coupled with stringent funding criteria. The NYDA focus as part of the agreement, is to ensure that young people will receive professional coaching and mentoring”. 
Sefa, a subsidiary of the IDC, has budgeted R1.7-billion over the next five years to provide funding to youth-owned businesses Sefa Chief Executive Thakhani Makhuvha says that in the past financial year, approximately R150-million was committed to businesses owned by young people.
Says Makhuvha: “We call upon young people to venture into businesses that will facilitate job creation, particularly those that are in the growing sectors of our economy.”
The three agencies have embarked on a programme of country-wide road shows to encourage entrepreneurship and participation of youth in the South African economy.
For more information contact:
Mandla Mpangase
Tel:  (011) 269 3282
Cell: 082 880 6074
Linda Mbongwa
Tel: (011) 651 7053
Nothemba Gqiba
Tel: (012) 748 9701

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