Savca graduation ceremony marks new milestone for venture capital in South Africa

by MMC
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The Southern African Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (Savca), the SA SME Fund and the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) – an entity of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI), are delighted to celebrate the graduation of the first Savca Venture. Investment Fund Management Program (VCFMP) cohort.

Source: Supplied.  Ketso Gordhan, Managing Director of the SA SME Fund;  Rekha Govender, Investment Finance Portfolio Manager, TIA;  Ismail Abdoola, financial director of TIA;  Thiru Pather, investment director of the SA SME Fund;  Patrick Krappie, interim CEO of TIA;  Vuyisile Phehane, director of Bio-Economy ToA;  and Tshepiso Kobile, Managing Director of Savca.

Source: Supplied. Ketso Gordhan, Managing Director of the SA SME Fund; Rekha Govender, Investment Finance Portfolio Manager, TIA; Ismail Abdoola, financial director of TIA; Thiru Pather, investment director of the SA SME Fund; Patrick Krappie, interim CEO of TIA; Vuyisile Phehane, director of Bio-Economy ToA; and Tshepiso Kobile, Managing Director of Savca.

The VCFMP is sponsored by the SA SME Fund and TIA, with Savca acting as the implementing partner.

Ketso Gordhan, Managing Director of the SA SME Fund, shares his sentiments: “The SA SME Fund is proud to be part of this transformational initiative and would like to congratulate the VCFMP cohort as they embark on their venture capital journey.

Thiru Pather, Director of the SA SME Fund, adds: “The objective of the SA SME Fund in supporting the VCFMP, providing technical assistance and ensuring capacity building, is to expand the universe of capital fund managers -risk transformed and investable, and in doing so, attract more institutional capital to the asset class.

The program had eight fund directorates comprising 29 individual representatives. These companies, namely Anza Capital, CapaciTech, Equate Advisory, IsimoVest VC Partners, Midzi Growth Fund, Seed South Capital, Strat Tech Capital and WZ Capital, have all, after an intense but rewarding six months of commitment and determination, completed the program – drawing the inaugural edition of the Savca VCFMP ended successfully.

An engine of economic growth

Tshepiso Kobile, Managing Director of Savca, remarks: “The need for a program of this nature is unquestionable, given firstly the crucial role that entrepreneurship plays as an engine of growth and innovation in our economy; and second, the role that the venture capital industry plays as a channel to channel funds to these entrepreneurs in a scalable way.

“We therefore see Savca’s role as enabling venture capital managers to be in a better position to attract capital, both commercial and development, with a better appreciation of the considerations that influence decision-making of these capital providers.”

Source: Supplied.  VCFMP cohort members and sponsor representatives at the graduation ceremony.

Source: Supplied. VCFMP cohort members and sponsor representatives at the graduation ceremony.

This mentoring and incubation program is part of a deliberate, strategic and forward-looking plan to help realize and sustain venture capital potential in the South African landscape. Specifically, the program is an opportunity to highlight the industry’s ambitious transformation initiatives, which include empowering black-owned and managed fund managers – particularly women managers – to thrive and contribute to create inclusiveness and gender equality within the sector.

Vuyisile Phehane, Head of Bioeconomy at TIA, shares his views: “Diversity, equity and inclusion in the venture capital sector in South Africa are essential to its promotion. The transformation of the venture capital industry, to include a diverse selection of candidates, with a particular focus on female representation in limited partner investments, is an outcome that TIA hopes to help achieve.

Diverse representation, the key to better returns

“The potential for greater returns from diverse representation must be realized within the South African economy, so that we can close the gap compared to more progressive economies.”

Sybil Kekana, a graduate of the VCFMP cohort, says this about her experience in the program: “The VCFMP has offered us a wealth of industry knowledge and growth opportunities. In particular, assistance with strategy formulation was invaluable.

“We also appreciate the opportunity we had to attend the Savca VC 2022 conference as panelists, where we were able to contribute to gaining knowledge and ideas that will help shape the industry going forward. future.

Kobile adds: “While members of the inaugural VCFMP cohort have their work cut out for them in the years to come, the program offers rigorous skills development, in the form of workshops, masterclasses, one-on-one mentoring and access to accredited subjects. Subject matter experts and service providers have already initiated these managers to impressive standards, thereby placing them in a strong position to make an impact from an economic growth perspective.

“By encouraging our entrepreneurs, we are empowering the South African economy. We are proud of how the VCFMP has brought these fund managers even closer to this goal.”

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