It costs less than R200 to start a business in SA – cheaper than most of the world – study says


Honorary Master
Jul 30, 2008
Lets see.... cipc, payroll, sars monthly, sars bi-annualy x2, sars annually, arguing with sars, vat, compensation fund, ccma, X number of extra pain in the arse monthly compliances that most people don't even know exist, ufiling, trying to actually gain entry into any of the monthly compliance websites that are the biggest collective trainwreck I have ever seen...... annual financial statements that cost an arm and a leg, bothering to have a separate bank account just for the business which most people don't bother with, etc.... paying some poor bastid to actually do all of this.

Yes, real cheap.

D tj

Expert Member
Jul 8, 2012
And fools believe this study??
For less than R100 it can be looted.
So the stock in a Spaza Shop costs less or slightly more than R200, same for roadside hawkers.


Honorary Master
Nov 11, 2008
Why would you register it anyway. You have to pay to keep the name and then you are in SARS radar.
Africa pappie

[XC] Oj101

Jun 4, 2010
... and then the red tape if you want to bring in anything electronic :cautious:

'Oh this product is safe for use in UK, Germany and USA? Well, let's see if passed our stringent African safety tests ... after you pay your R7,000 of course ... and in 6 months ... and if we reckon not safe ... please do it all again. Thanks'

Suppliers abroad have said the most difficult countries to get their stuff into appear to be developing countries,. South America is also quite tough to get into. On top this, we have our NRCS that are often a few years behind on what reports they'll accept. Government need to sort out the ease of doing business in this country, as that's our backbone.
You forgot about the bit about having to pay that money whether it passes their standards or not.

All the acts you need to follow also make it feel like a piece of theater. WITHOUT staff, I need to comply with the following:

Companies Act
Consumer Protection Act
Electronic Communication and Transactions Act
Promotion of Access of Information Act
Protection of Personal Information Act

Once there are staff involved, add the following:

Basic Conditions of Employment Act
Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Health Diseases Act
Income Tax Act
Labour Relations Act
Occupational and Safety Act
Unemployment Insurance Act

And then there are others to consider as well:

Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment Act (if you want to deal with large companies, BBEEE is a requirement)
National Credit Act (if you want to provide credit)
Skills Development Act
Skills Development Levies Act

I'm sure I'm missing half a dozen from my list.

If you don't know these and how to implement them, be prepared to hand over a five digit (or larger) figure for an attorney to help you out. They will take your money and tell you "do this", "don't do that" - probably worthwhile considering the possible fines/prison sentences for breaking the acts.

Think you can do your own corporate taxes even though you're not an accountant? HAHAHAHAHAHA. Think again. It's much more complex than personal income tax. That's another five digit (or larger) figure you're handing over - although this one is possibly worthwhile. A decent accountant knows all the tax avoidance (NOT tax evasion!! - that'll get you in some very hot water when (not if) you get caught) loopholes to bring down the amount you're handing over to SARS.

My first year in business has cost me over R 100,000. Under R 200? Please. Even if you register the company and leave it completely dormant, you still need to file annual returns, which also costs. Filing null returns isn't free even if you do it yourself.