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Business Investment Competition

Overview | Prizes | Sectors | Application



In an effort to boost enterprise development, the Eskom Development Foundation has been running the annual Eskom Business Investment Competition (BIC) since 2008. The BIC provides a great platform for South African owners of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to become part of a community of like-minded entrepreneurs as they look to build on their businesses’ solid foundation and realise their true potential.
Black-owned, registered small and medium enterprises in the engineering/construction, manufacturing, agriculture/agri-processing as well as trade/services sectors that have been in operation for at least 24 months are eligible to enter.
Business Investment Competition Toolkit


All the BIC’s winners, runners-up and finalists get to enjoy the awesome prizes on offer along with other benefits, which include increased awareness through media coverage and exhibiting of their businesses at an exclusive expo for small businesses, where they can network and share valuable experiences with other entrepreneurs as well as connect with some 7000 potential investors and visitors.
With R1.3 million worth of prizes up for grabs in the competition, finalists get to compete to win their share, which they must use to improve their businesses. The overall winner takes away a R150 000 cash prize. Winners of each sector receive R100 000; the first runners-up in each of the sectors receive R50 000 while the second runners-up each receive R25 000. All other finalists each receive R5 000.



Operating successfully in the engineering or construction sector is a challenging task and the BIC adjudicators are on the hunt for small black-owned businesses that are providing quality services to the South African market. If engineering or construction is your forte then enter the BIC and you could walk away with R100 000 to improve your business.



If you operate a business in the manufacturing sector and have shown determination and dedication to build a sustainable business, enter the BIC. The adjudicator’s are looking for outstanding entrepreneurs that run efficient and effective manufacturing companies producing high quality goods that cater to the consumer or industrial markets.



The BIC adjudicators are looking for candidates in agriculture or agri-processing, who show not only perseverance and bravery by starting their own businesses, but also a keen understanding of farming systems and the agricultural environment. If you have been operating in this sector for at least two years and are a registered business, enter and you could win.


The BIC adjudicators look out for successful South African companies operating in the trade or services sector. If you have a firm grasp on the South African trade or services landscape and have built a robust business, enter the Business Investment Competition and you could win R100 000 to take your business to the next level   

Application and adjudication process

Applicants must submit an online application. This is followed by two rounds of adjudication to select the winners and runners-up.

First round adjudication: Following the submission of all entries our panel of adjudicators reviews the businesses entered and draw up a shortlist of successful entrants.
Second round adjudication: All shortlisted business owners are invited to Johannesburg to make a presentation to a panel of adjudicators about their business and showcase why they are deserving of the prize. At this second round of adjudication all applicants (business owners) are interviewed by a team of writers.
Awards: All finalists are invited to Johannesburg to the BIC Awards on 30 August 2017, where the overall winner and category winners are announced, after which they all exhibit as part of their prizes, at the annual Small Business Expo (SBE) at the Ticket Pro Dome from 31 August to 2 September 2017.
Small Business Expo (SBE): Following the BIC Awards, all finalists remain in Johannesburg for three days to attend and exhibit at the SBE as well as attended several business training workshops.
To enter online visit: or enter by email or fax: Call Nqobile Dlamini on 011 544 1900 or email
Entries for the competition open in May and close in July.

Who may enter?

·         Registered, South African, black-owned small or medium enterprises that:

  • Have been in operation for 24 months or longer
  • Operate in any of the nine provinces, and
  • Operate in one of the following sectors:
    • Engineering/Construction
    • Manufacturing
    • Agriculture/Agri-processing
    • Trade/services


What documents are needed?
  • Business Plan for this year and next two years
  • Marketing Plan for this year and next two years
  • Copies of partner/joint venture agreement
  • Copy of latest audited financial statement, if (Pty) Ltd
  • Copy of business registration certificate
  • Copy of VAT certificate (if applicable)
  • Copy of SARS tax clearance certificate
  • opy of employee tax registration opy of employee tax registration
  • Copy of UIF registration certificate
  • Copy of COID registration
  • Copy of latest bank statements for each bank account
  • Latest copy of water account
  • Latest copy of electricity account
  • Latest copy of taxes and rates account
  • Copy of owners and shareholders’ identity documents
  • Copy of BEE certificate