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.
Assessments and Coaching Services for Coachlab Programme Participants for a Period of Twelve (12) Months 2019-08-12 11:00 TIHMC/ 2019/ 01
Refurbishment of a Building-Springs Hostel 2019-08-20 11:00 EEC/ T06/ 2019
Canteen Management System for SITA Catering Units at Centurion and Erasmuskloof Buildings, Including Maintenance and Support for a Period of Thirty-Six (36) Months 2019-08-08 11:00 RFB 1974/ 2019
The Supply and fitting of Steel Cabinets for five Hospitality Kitchens 2019-08-20 11:00 EEC/ T07/ 2019
Rendering of a cleaning service at the Western Cape College of Nursing: Metro West Campus in Athlone & Metro East Campus in Stikland, Department of Health, Western Cape Government for a three (3) year period 2019-08-16 11:00 WCGHSC0211/ 2019
Appointment of a service provider for Integrated Marketing Agency: Creative, digital and media agency - 5 year contracting period 2019-08-12 12:00 SAT North Europe 001/ 19
Invitation to service providers for the supply and delivery of clean drinking water to schools in Gauteng for a specific fixed term period of three (3) years 2019-08-12 11:00 GT/ GDE/ 044/ 2019
Appointment of a service provider for TGCSA Mystery Guest Shopping for South African Tourism. 2019-08-12 12:00 SAT150/ 19
Appointment of a service provider for Public Relations and Events Agency 2019-08-12 12:00 SAT Netherlands and Belgium 002/ 19
Appointment of a service provider for the erecting of a security fence at the outside perimeter of the Buffelspoort Plant Quarantine Station In Northwest for the Department of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries 2019-08-12 11:00 12/ 19
Appointment of a service provider for aerial spraying of red-billed quelea birds to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries for a period of two years of two years. 2019-08-08 11:00 8/ 19
The Provision of an Employee Health and Wellness Service to the Western Cape Government for a period of 36 months 2019-08-16 11:00 FMA 0003- 2019/ 20
Appointment of a service provider for the purchasing, delivery, commissioning of laboratory workbenches and fumehoods for the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. 2019-08-08 11:00 19/ 19
Appointment of a Service Provider To Offer Training On Enterpreneurship Skills To Graduates for a period of 36 months 2019-08-09 11:00 NRF/ SAASTA/ 03/ 2019- 2020
Appointment of a Service Provider to Offer Training on Life Skills to Graduates for a Period of 36 Months. 2019-08-09 11:00 NRF/ SAASTA/ 02/ 2019- 2020
Provision of security services for Amathole Health District facilities for a period of 36 months 2019-08-26 11:00 SCMU3- 19/ 20- 0170- AM
Appointment of a suitable service provider to provide an Integrated Facilities Management Services (IFMS) for a period of two years. 2019-08-08 11:00 NERSA/ 1920/ FAD/ IFMS/ BID005
Placement of Flow Cytometer analyser for Tshwane Academic Division for a period of five years with service and maintenance 2019-08-12 11:00 RFB046/ 19/ 20
Outright purchase of Automated DNA extractor system for NICD for a period of five years. 2019-08-13 11:00 RFB206/ 18/ 19
Placement of Flow Cytometer analyser for Doctor George Mukhari for a period of five years with service and maintenance 2019-08-12 11:00 RFB046/ 19/ 20


Tender Training

By Werner van Rooyen

31 January 2019

People often ask me how I know so much about tenders and the completing of tender documents. The answer is easy; training. I believe that we must always try to train as much as possible. The more training you will do the better you will get at responding to a tender. Gary Player, one of South Africa’s best golfers of all time, used to say: “The more I practice, the luckier I get.”

That is the whole point of training. The... Read More

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