CDI Capital Growth Fund zooms in on e-commerce, digital services SMMEs

4th August 2021 By: Marleny Arnoldi - Creamer Media Online Writer

The CDI Capital Growth Fund has turned its focus to small businesses involved in e-commerce and digital services, which the impact funder believes is a sector that has proved resilient throughout recent shocks to the economy and can help create jobs going forward.

The funder is encouraging small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) that are experiencing growth or are poised for expansion to apply for grant funding.

Businesses can use the grant funding to unlock growth opportunities and cover needs such as advertising, marketing, communications, building and other fixed structures, equipment, machinery, materials, research and testing and professional services, besides others.

Businesses can apply for an amount between R105 000 and R1-million, depending on how many jobs they commit to creating before March 31, 2023.

The criteria for applying businesses include that it has to be a South African-owned business, operate in South Africa, must have been operational for at least a year, match 20% of the fund’s contribution with their own cash, create one job for every R21 000 grant investment, with a minimum of five jobs, and be tax compliant.

CDI is a nonprofit subsidiary of Craft + Design Institute, and has a two-year record of success in supporting small businesses in South Africa.

Between 2012 and 2015, in its first round of funding, CDI created 464 jobs across 45 businesses, with them growing their yearly revenue by 73% on average.

The latest round of funding, which CDI receives from the National Treasury’s Jobs Fund, aims to support about 60 businesses to create 600 new jobs by the end of March 2023.

Between July and December 2020, CDI distributed R7-million in grants and soft loans, as well as R1-milion worth of technical business and market support grants to 23 small businesses in its portfolio, which were aimed at protecting the businesses and their staff from the impacts of the Covid-19-related lockdown.