Nedbank is offering business registrations together with black economic empowerment (BEE) affidavits or certificates, endorsed by the Department of Trade and Industry (dti), in one seamless process for new businesses with an annual turnover of less than R10-million.
For the past four years the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) has been working with the four major banks in South Africa to simplify the company registration process and other related services, enabling small businesses to succeed. The latest addition to the suite of services through this collaboration will enable bank clients to also apply for BEE affidavits or certificates valid for 12 months from the date of issue. This service is aimed at exempted microenterprises (EMEs).
In partnership with CIPC, Nedbank has become the first bank to offer BEE affidavits or certificates to its clients when they incorporate a company using the Nedbank portal. It is envisaged that this service will be expanded in future and will enable clients to renew their annual returns through the bank’s online platform.
BEE legislation exempts small enterprises with an annual turnover of less than R10-million from needing a BEE certificate. Instead, such enterprises need to have only an affidavit that includes ownership and turnover information. However, because EMEs prefer to have a formally issued document confirming their BEE status, the dti and CIPC agreed to offer an integrated service for company registration and issuing of BEE affidavits or certificates at no extra cost for EMEs.
During the past year the dti and CIPC reviewed their memorandum of agreement to allow bank partners to offer BEE affidavits or certificates. Nedbank employs stringent authentication measures and therefore the process is robust and in line with CIPC’s biometric verification requirements.
To date more than 500 BEE certificates have been issued to EMEs through the Nedbank portal.
Nedbank head of relationship banking sales, Alan Shannon, says Nedbank is always looking at innovating and providing practical solutions for small businesses, particularly startups, aimed at alleviating red tape and other obstacles in their quest to start a new business.
“Through our ongoing client engagements, we are cognisant that it has become increasingly difficult for startups to take off. Through initiatives such as these, which form part of our Banking and Beyond offering, we hope to make it easier for entrepreneurs and startups,” says Shannon.
He says that, as a bank for business, Nedbank has successfully partnered with the government and business to help grow the economy and create jobs.