Use your ESD budget to bring about real change and improve your B-BBEE scorecard


Make a difference to SA's economy and your scorecard by supporting SMEs through Black Umbrellas.

SMEs are vital to the South African economy as a large potential source of employment and positive contributors to the GDP. However, these SMEs face a number of constrains, resulting in stagnation of both turnover and generation of employment. This is a cause for concern, as SMEs account for approximately 60 percent of employment and 91 percent of formal businesses. 

For this reason, it is crucial to design enterprise development programmes that will have a wider reach and bring about real, systematic change. 

Black Umbrellas’ incubation programme has this directive at the heart of its existence. It collaborates with partners in the private sector, government and civil society to address the low levels of entrepreneurship and high failure rate of 100 percent black-owned emerging businesses in South Africa.

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By providing a structured and highly subsidised programme, using a national footprint of business incubation offices, these SME clients are afforded the expertise, office infrastructure and resources required for them to take the next step in growing a successful business.

Nyasha Madavo, the CFO of Black Umbrellas, said:

“As Black Umbrellas, we are passionate about the socio-economic impact we make to our clients and partners. We believe that every rand invested by our partners and donors must yield positive result and tangible impact."

The SMEs that Black Umbrellas supports continue to make a significant positive contribution to the outlook of South Africa. Since its inception in 2009, Black Umbrellas has put 1,458 businesses through incubation, created and preserved 11,827 jobs, and helped these SMEs generate R2.87 billion in turnover.

“It has been inspiring to witness remarkable growth by our SME clients and their businesses even within the challenging economic climate,” says Nyasha. 

It’s clear that the work of each Black Umbrellas incubator directly addresses the low levels of employment and breaks the cycle of poverty in society and communities. The programme plays an active role in the economy of South Africa and creates sustainable opportunities for youth and South Africans that are desperately seeking jobs, supporting the government's National Development Plan, which calls on all social partners to work together to create fertile conditions to grow small enterprises. 

Nyasha says:

“When you choose to partner with Black Umbrellas, your impact goes far beyond the B-BBEE scorecard as you are contributing to a credible ESD programme that is supporting a new generation of successful black-owned SMEs in a meaningful way, thus contributing to economic development and transformation.” 

Some of the Black Umbrellas Top Funding Partners 

- Cyril Ramaphosa Foundation Trust
- Allan Gray Orbis Foundation Endowment
- Transnet SOC Ltd
- Macsteel Service Centres SA (Pty) Ltd
- Exxaro Grootegeluk Coal
- JPMorgan Chase Bank
- Western Platinum Limited
- Mabindu Business Development Trust
- Jobs Fund
- Total South Africa (Pty) Ltd


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