The Corporation establishes partnerships of mutual benefit in education, skills development and community development to assist impoverished communities in South Africa. The objectives of our SED partners are aligned with those of the Corporation.

The Corporation’s SED programme is management by an external service provider. The 2020 spend of R10 million (2019: R4 million) represented 1% of Net Profit After Tax (NPAT). The focus of the programme is on skills development and education, including bursaries and after-school support, to contribute to community wellbeing and wealth creation. During the reporting period, SED initiatives included:

Bursary support programme

The SED Policy supports the financial, development finance and export sectors. The bursary programme targets post-school level students from historically disadvantaged communities who are developing their skills to work in the export, manufacturing, insurance or development finance fields in Africa. These tertiary education brusaries aim to shorten timelines and enhance access to employment opportunities as well as transform the industry talent pipeline.

The Corporation relies on service providers to engage and interact with bursary holders, screen and shortlist suitable candidates and disburse funding that covers tuition, accommodation, study materials and stipends. Students enrolled in the SAADP programme also receive ongoing academic and psychosocial support to foster a healthy learning environment.
During 2019/20, the SED programme supported 10 Actuarial Science and nine National Certificate bursaries in the amount of R2,416,504.

R5 million was spent on bursaries to support:

  • 9 Actuarial Science students – Universities of Pretoria and Witwatersrand
  • 18 Yacht and Boat-Building students – False Bay TVET College
    13 Accounting students – Universities of Witwatersrand, North West, Free State, Cape Town, Pretoria and Nelson Mandela.
  • 10 MPhil Development Finance students – University of Stellenbosch

R4 million was spent on Consumer Education initiatives which included a financial literacy programme for students at TVET colleges and universities.


  • A four-year partnership with the Maths and Science Leadership Academy (MSLA) in the Northern Cape that saw 71 of the 74 learners who completed the MSLA programme register at universities and other tertiary education institutions for the 2018 academic year, 43 of whom are the first in their families to enrol for tertiary education.
  • A partnership with the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre that provided after-school lessons in mathematics, physical science, accounting and life sciences to 740 Grade 12 learners from five schools in Tshwane, which improved the pass rates in those subjects at the schools from approximately 39% in 2016 to almost 70% in 2017.
  • Financial support for the Axium Education Ekurhuleni Maths and Science Centre in Mqanduli in the Eastern Cape to provide after-school tutorials to ±200 Grade 8 to Grade 12 learners
  • Handed over a computer laboratory to the Sea View Senior Secondary School in Mqanduli in March 2018
  • Bursaries for 16 students to study actuarial science, accounting and engineering science at various institutions through partnerships with the Thuthuka Educational Upliftment Fund, Central University of Technology and South African Actuarial Development Programme. Three of these students graduated in 2017 and were employed at reputable South African companies, while the rest are expected to graduate in 2018
  • Employee participation in an ECIC-volunteerism programme in under-privileged communities on Nelson Mandela Day
  • A partnership with the Tshwane Leadership Foundation (TLF) and Unisa Community Outreach and Engagement Chance-2-Advance (C2A) Project for Nelson Mandela Day with a donation to provide fittings for the TLF Youth Centre and assist communities under TLF care
  • Employment at reputable boat building companies in the export industry for three of the six ECIC-funded students who completed their three-year NQF-4 Yacht and Boatbuilding Programme at the False Bay Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) College in Cape Town. The 10 students who enrolled for the programme in July 2017 are expected to complete their studies in 2019.


The key outputs of the Enterprise and Supplier Development (ESD) programme aligns the Corporation with the country’s B-BBEE legislation and scorecard and supports supplier diversity through strategically sourcing and developing Black-owned SMMEs into export competitive entities within their respective industries/ sectors.

The ESD spend for 2019/20 was 3% (2018: 3%) of net profit after tax, of which 2% and 1% (2018: 1% and 2%) of net profit after tax were allocated to supplier development and enterprise development, respectively. The ESD initiatives are aligned with the Corporation’s CSR-ESD policy framework and ESD Implementation Plan. Key highlights during 2019/20 included engagements with the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), Telkom and Sasol to explore collaboration in enterprise and supplier development.

The Board visited Delberg Engineering and Portia-M to look at the impact of the ESD programme.

The Corporation invited 28 enterprises from its supply chain database to attend the Supplier Development induction workshop in October 2019. Only eight of those were approved for overall support of R4,2 million for the reporting period. Supplier development support also included non-financial support of which only four of six invited entities completed the non-financial training (entrepreneurial, business and technology training) due to challenges experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

SMME access to export development support

The Corporation entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA) in 2018/19 to provide small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) with access to enterprise export development support. This includes technology transfer, market facilitation, production equipment and quality standards to improve productivity and the export readiness of products. R5,6 million was committed to support nine qualifying export-orientated entities through this scheme in 2019/20.

Contribution to fight against COVID-19

Following a call by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition to corporate South Africa to join the government in the fight to contain the spread of the Coronavirus and contribute financial assistance to fund relief measures or activities to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Corporation contributed R20 million. The contribution did not affect the Corporation’s operational capabilities or its own COVID-19-related support initiatives.

The key outputs of the Enterprise and Supplier Development (ESD) programme ensure ECIC compliance with B-BBEE legislation and scorecard, supplier diversity through strategic sourcing and the development of Black-owned SMMEs. ESD received a budget allocation of 3% of net profit after tax for the 2017/18 financial year. 1% of net profit after tax and 2% of net profit after tax were allocated to supplier development and enterprise development, respectively, to enhance supplier diversity, empower Black-owned SMMEs, develop export orientated SMMEs into competitive entities in their respective sectors in line with ECIC’s CSI-ESD policy framework and ESD Implementation Plan.

During the review period, the ESD representative participated in a number of events, meetings and visits. These included the Seda Tshwane Annual Stakeholder event and Entrepreneur Day as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week. ECIC also resumed pre- and post-disbursement visits to ED and SD beneficiaries during the past year and look forward to an ESD profile scheduled to appear in the sector’s esteemed ESD Handbook 2018/19 in the year ahead.

As at financial year end March 2018, the ESD programme had supported 28 ED entities with machinery (production capacity) and quality management system interventions.

The ESD programme has assisted 23 SD entities through business development and equipment support. Our impact has seen a notable increase in employees at Tier 1 and Tier 2 entities. ECIC also approved funding support for 18 Tier 3 entities during the 2017/18 financial year.