It is financed by a annual government grant rather than a specific capitalised amount. In the 2011 financial year the fund supported 46 projects to the value of R71-million. In the 2011/2012 financial year the focus shifted to assisting smaller organisations or smaller projects within larger organisations.
This fund consists of a number of smaller schemes, each with its own specific focus:
The Product Process Development Scheme provides financial assistance for small, very small and micro enterprises with total assets (excluding fixed property) worth less than R5-million, a turnover of less than R13-million and fewer than 50 employees. If the company is wholly owned or has significant shareholding from a large or medium company, it only qualifies for support under either the Matching or Partnership Schemes.
The scheme is intended to promote innovation and technology development through the provision of financial assistance for the development of new products and/or processes.
The financial assistance is provided as a non-repayable grant of between 50% and 85% (depending on the shareholding by BEE candidates or companies, women and persons with disabilities) with a maximum grant amount of R2-million per project.
The Matching Scheme provides financial assistance in the form of a taxable non-repayable grant of between 50% and 75% of qualifying costs incurred in pre-competitive development activity associated with a specific development project, up to a maximum grant amount of R5-million. Financial assistance under the Matching Scheme is also provided to large companies on a 50% matching basis.
Financial assistance under the Partnership Scheme is provided in the form of a conditionally repayable grant of 50% of the qualifying cost incurred during development activity, with a minimum grant amount of R10-million a project. The funding is repayable on successful commercialisation of the project.
The scheme repayment levy is calculated as a percentage of the projected value of sales, paid biannually, over a specific number of years.