Issue Date: 
Monday, January 5, 2015

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.

  1. SARS
    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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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).
  4. Experience
    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.
  5. Resources
    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 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

This article was written by Werner van Rooyen, Director of HowToTender (Pty) Ltd. which specializes in tender consulting and tender training.

Title Closing Date Tender No.
Provision of Public Passenger Transport Service 2019-05-24 11:00 Q46752893
Mothibistad Traffic Station: Rendering of Security services for a period of 36 months. 2019-05-24 11:00 Q46752893
Supply, installation and support services for ten (10) years of a nitrogen liquefier for iThemba Labs, Faure, Cape Town 2019-05-22 11:00 NRF/ iThemba LABS/ 2018 - 19: 06
Appointment of a Service Provider to Assist The Department Of Rural Development and Land Reform with a National Advertisement and Response Handling Services for a period of two (2) years. 2019-05-02 11:00 5/ 2/ 2/ 1- RDLR 0002(2019/ 2020)
Consulting Engineers to provide professional engineering services for (Design,Review,Contract Documentation and site supervision) of road K15 (558)Adcock road between road K102 at Lufhereng (KM 8,46) and wild Chestnut Street (KM 12,8) 2019-05-20 11:00 DRT 05/ 05/ 2018
The enlistment of Additional Service Providers on the Panel of Accredited Training Service Providers valid until 31 January 2021 2019-05-13 11:00 E 1511
Appointment of additional members to the National Lotteries Commission Research panel 2019-05-24 11:00 NLC/ 2019 - 8
Appointment of a Service Provider to Render Security Guarding Services at the Department of Public Service and Administration for a period of two (2) years. 2019-05-10 11:00 DPSA001/ 2019
The Financial Intelligence Centre request proposals from service providers that will provide pure san storage array components for the Financial Intelligence Centre. 2019-05-08 11:00 FIC/ RFB/ SANSTORAGE/ 002/ 2019/ 20
Upington Statistics South Africa: Alternative office accommodation: 454.55m² and 15 parking bays for a period of 5 years 2019-05-22 11:00 LS09/ 2018
Upington SASSA: Alternative office accommodation: 928.41m² and 19 parking bays for a period of 5 years. 2019-05-15 11:00 LS04/ 2019
Betterment and Re-graveling of P216 within Buhlebamakhosi Rural Road Transport Forum. 2019-05-24 11:00 C252/ 1920/ BR/ 401
Betterment and Re-graveling of P207 within Buhlebamakhosi Rural Road Transport Forum 2019-05-24 11:00 C254/ 1920/ BR/ 404
Betterment and Re-graveling of D90 within Buhlebamakhosi Rural Road Transport Forum 2019-05-24 11:00 C252/ 1920/ BR/ 807
Appointment of service providers for financial modeling and projects packaging for the delivery of social and rental housing opportunities for the Ekurhuleni Housing Company (EHC) on an as and when required basis for a period of 24 months 2019-05-20 11:00 EHCRSFP/ 03/ 19
Appointment of a Contractor for the Construction a of Tractor Shed Dundonald in Chief Albert Luthuli Local Municipality in Gert Sibande District Municipality In Mpumalanga Province. 2019-05-15 11:00 CONMP 0002 (2019/ 2020)
Upington Dept of Home Affairs: Alternative office accommodation: 1202.77m² and 17 parking bays for a period 5 years. 2019-05-22 11:00 LS08/ 2019
Appointment of contractor for provide Basic Water and Sanitation Infrastructure for Evicted Farm Dwellers from Paardeplaas Farm, eMakhazeni Local Municipality 2019-05-15 11:00 CONMP 0004 (2019/ 2020)
Appointment of a Service Provider for the Design and Construction of Houses With Basic Services in Portion 3 (Portion of Portion 1) of Farm Elandshoek 358 Rd 2019-05-15 11:00 CONMP 0003 (2019/ 2020)
Request to enter into three (03) year agreement for maintenance on ASGSmartTest Software. 2019-04-29 11:00 RFB 1923/ 2019


Tender Site Visits

By Werner van Rooyen

31 January 2019

If you are so fortunate to have reached the stage where Organs of State or Private Sector Companies want to do a site visit, you must know that you are in the final stage in winning that tender that you have responded to.

But what must you do to prepare for a site visit?

The first thing is to ensure that your place of business is in excellent order. Be sure everything is clean and neat. A clean workshop or office is a pre-... Read More

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