Online shopping. PHOTO: Supplied
Online shopping. PHOTO: Supplied

Online business registrations surge due to lockdown

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Oct 21, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - There has been a surge of new business registrations in South Africa since the harsh lockdown measures were implemented in the country, to stem the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

Entrepreneurs changed their strategies and business plans in order to survive.

Lauren Deva, Head of Sales for Transactional Product House at FNB Business said, "We have seen an increase in the number of businesses starting to use BizPortal, a government initiative where entrepreneurs use the BizPortal.gov.za website to register their new businesses at the CIPC (Companies and Intellectual Property Commission). Once registered, they are prompted to open a business bank account, followed by a listing of the different banks."

FNB data shows that Gauteng led with 44% of applications followed by KwaZulu-Natal at 13%, Mpumalanga at 10% and the Western Cape at 9%.

“We are seeing a strong uptake through this portal as well as an increase in applications through our normal CIPC interactions, where clients can register a company on FNB’s website. This indicates that more and more entrepreneurs want to formalise their businesses in order take advantage of new opportunities presented as a result of COVID and further benefit from financial support provided by both private and public sector,” said Deva.

“When the BizPortal started, we initially had an average of 700 registrations a month. However, this significantly increased to 14 000 registrations during the lockdown period, between April and end of August. On average 2 800 businesses were registered per month via the portal,” adds Deva.

Many businesses have used the lockdown period to either open their own personal services business, or to formalise their existing business for relief funding and operating permits.

BUSINESS REPORT

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