5 Facts to remember when starting a business
Article by W van Rooyen
These days it is not uncommon for entrepreneurs to start a business solely for the purpose to respond to tenders or request for proposals. The fact is that in South Africa it has become a fulltime job to respond to tenders, especially if you want to do business with Organs of State or with large Private Sector entities.
It is not a pre-requisite for an entrepreneur to have a registered juristic entity but it surely will be more advantageous. Remember you can respond to a tender in your own name and if you do respond to a tender in your own name the same rules apply as for those of a registered entity.
There are basically five facts to remember when you start your own business. These five facts are even more important if you want to respond to tenders.
Always register with the South African Revenue Service (SARS). Firstly and most importantly you have to register for Income Tax. This is very important. You will need a Tax Clearance Certificate if you want to respond to tenders and without an Income Tax number you won’t be able to receive a Tax Clearance Certificate which in turn will keep you from responding to tenders.
You might be required to register for Value Added Tax (VAT) if your business’ annual turnover exceeds R1.0 million.
You also might be required to register for Pay as You Earn (PAYE) and Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) if your business has any employees.
- Bank account
Unfortunately the days of keeping your money in box under your bed are long gone. You will need to open a bank account for your business. To open a bank account you will need proof of address (point 3) and proof of identity or proof of your business registration details. Remember to take these documents along when opening a bank account.
- Registered address
You will have to have a registered address for your business. Tender Evaluation Committees tend to do site visits and it will be difficult to explain to them that you are doing business from your motorcar. The best is to set up a shop to show your intend of doing business. You will also need proof of address to open a bank account (see point 2).
Experience might be the most important fact of them all. If you do not have experience in what you’re doing failure is imminent. This is even more so when you respond to tenders – the Tender Evaluation Committees are vigilant when it comes to experience – so be sure to tender for something that you have experience in.
You cannot start a business or respond to a tender if you do not have recourses and by recourses we mainly mean financial backing or money! Any start-up business that does not have sufficient financial recourses is set to fail. Ensure that you have the necessary recourses such financial support, infrastructure and human capacity.
Starting your own business is tough. Starting your own business especially to respond to tenders is even tougher. If you follow these five basic facts or rules you will have the necessary tools to start with an advantage over your competitors.
For more on this and other interesting tender news please visit our website at www.howtotender.co.za. You will find our newly revised Tender Manual there – our Tender Manual guides you through the whole process of responding to a Tender or a Request for Proposal.
To learn more about this and many other tender conditions please attend one of our How-to-Tender workshops. For more information on the tender courses please email Estelle at Estelle@howtotender.co.za.
This article was written by Werner van Rooyen, Director of HowToTender (Pty) Ltd. which specializes in tender consulting and tender training.