How does the SA Future Trust (SAFT) work?

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Published: April 1, 2020

The South African Future Trust (SAFT) is an independent trust set up by Nicky and Jonathan Oppenheimer, in partnership with the South African government and private sector. The SAFT extends direct financial support to South African Small, Medium and Micro-sized businesses (SMMEs) employees who are at risk of losing their jobs or will suffer a loss of income because of COVID-19. Specifically, SAFT will transfer funds directly to employees of participating SMMEs, via interest-free loans where employees themselves carry no liability.

How does SAFT support works?

SAFT will transfer funds directly to employees of participating SMMEs, via interest-free loans where employees themselves carry no liability.

  1. SAFT Provides Funding
    1. SAFT makes available R1bn in loan funding for SMME employees that meet pre-defined eligibility criteria and conditions. Loans will be extended to eligible SMMEs on a first-come-first-served basis.
  2. SMME Application
    1. SMMEs submit any supporting documentation on behalf of their staff as required.
  3. Bank Disburses Funds to Employees
    1. Qualifying employees receive funds directly from the partner bank.
  4. SMME Repays Loan to SAFT
    1. The company pays back principal loan to SAFT within 5 years interest-free.

 

Partners

The SAFT has partnered with four of South Africa’s leading banks in administering this scheme: ABSA, FirstRand Bank, Nedbank and Standard Bank. The SAFT scheme is now live.

The scheme is currently available to clients of these four banks whose businesses were financially sustainable prior to the COVID-19 crisis. SMMEs should register their interest directly via one of the banks. We are working hard to extend this partnership to other banking institutions and invite their participation.

Our partner banks have waived their normal fees in relation to managing the SAFT scheme during this period of national disaster, to maximise the funds available to recipients.

Beyond the immediate crisis, SAFT will have an ongoing role in accelerating economic growth. Any further funds donated, and any loans repaid by participating SMMEs, to SAFT will remain within this non-profit structure. They will be used to support initiatives with a focus on employment creation until all funds are ultimately disbursed.

How to apply

Please contact your bank to apply for the scheme.

Standard Bank

To apply through Standard Bank, please click HERE.

Alternatively, you can email COVID-19saftfund@standardbank.co.za or visit the Standard Bank Business Banking COVID-19 landing page: COVID-19 Business Banking

FNB

To apply please log in to FNB App or FNB Online Banking HERE and:

  • Click the “COVID-19” icon
  • Click “For My Business”
  • Complete and submit the SME Assessment

ABSA

To apply please visit our dedicated SAFT website: www.absa.co.za/personal/covid-19/south-african-future-trust

Nedbank

To view application process and access application forms visit nedbank.co.za  and navigate to Business, COVID-19 Relief and select SAFT. Alternatively, please search our website for ‘SAFT’.

To apply email forms to saft@nedbank.co.za

Eligibility Criteria

SMMEs need to meet the following criteria to qualify for the scheme:

  1. Annual Turnover below R25m
  2. Trading for at Least 24 Months
  3. Sustainable Business on 29th February 2020
  4. Business Adversely Impacted by COVID-19.

 

Required Documentation

  1. Company Identification
    1. Registration number (if a company or a close corporation)
    2. Master’s reference number (if it is a trust)
    3. ID number and business address (if a sole proprietor)
  2. PAYE Number
    1. A valid PAYE Number registered with SARS (if applicable)
  3. Income Tax Number
    1. A valid income tax number registered with SARS
  4. Employment Status
    1. Confirmation of permanent employment status of employee

 

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