Yesterday, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube shared more details regarding the $500 million National Venture Capital fund announced as part of the 2020 National Budget.
During the budget presentation, not much was given in detail regarding the fund but Mthuli expanded on the little we knew so far:
The venture fund will be availed starting in February next year and we are also inviting private sector, as it is a worth spend for us as government.
SMEs have several challenges, which continue to negatively affect their growth, the major one being limitted patient capital raising options.Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube
The point the finance minister raised regarding patient capital is pretty important once you take into consideration that SMEs and startups have always had a hard time accessing funding. They don’t have the collateral banks need for loans and the microfinance institutions made specifically to target SMEs have steep interest rates which makes them extremely unattractive.
Mthuli Ncube also shared that the National VC won’t target a specific industry:
The fund will not be sector specific, we just want to see new companies, new investments and jobs – those are critical pressure points.