The Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda) is an agency of the Department of Small Business Development. Seda was established in December 2004, through the National Small Business Amendment Act, Act 29 of 2004.
It is mandated to implement government’s small business strategy; design and implement a standard and common national delivery network for small enterprise development; and integrate government-funded small enterprise support agencies across all tiers of government.
Seda’s mission is to develop, support and promote small enterprises throughout the country, ensuring their growth and sustainability in co–ordination and partnership with various role players, including global partners, who make international best practices available to local entrepreneurs.
Vision: To be the centre of excellence for small enterprise development in South Africa
Mission: To develop, support and promote small enterprises to ensure their growth and sustainability in coordination and partnership with other role players.
Goals: To ensure that the small enterprise sector grows and increases its contribution to sustainable and equitable, social and economic development, employment and wealth creation.
Seda was established in December 2004 through the National Small Business Amendment Act – Act 29 of 2004 – as an agency under the Department of Trade and Industry, the dti. The establishment was done by merging three entities; Ntsika Enterprise Promotion Agency, National Manufacturing Advisory Centre (NAMAC) and the Community Public Private Partnership Programme (CPPP).
As the government agency for small enterprise development, Seda has a huge role to play in the country’s economic development creation.
Seda’s programme focusing on access to local and export markets is a key intervention in supporting small enterprises. The export emphasis is on developing economies. The organisation is also refining its supplier development programme, which seeks to create a relationship between small businesses and large buyers. Seda will scale up its incubation footprint, as it has proven to be a much needed intervention to reduce the early stage mortality rate of small enterprises and foster innovation.
The organisation is further addressing the lack of coordination and existing fragmentation of small enterprise support activities through involvement in a national government initiative to coordinate small enterprise support activities, development of an integrated strategy, and the hosting of summits on small enterprise development.
Seda has entered a new era where as an organisation it is more focused on small and medium enterprise with an emphasis on the manufacturing sector. These businesses are capable of utilising our natural resources and turning them into products for international markets. In this regard the organisation has identified six areas that are aimed to addressing challenges faced by the upper end of the small enterprise sector. These areas, which are internally referred to as high impact programmes are; advocacy and lobbying, supplier development, access to local and foreign markets, mentorship and coaching, technology transfer, and incubation. The plan is to develop these into flagship programmes and to rally partner organisations to work with Seda in these areas.