The Seed Capital Grant Scheme was first introduced in 2016 to provide seed capital of up to SCR 50,000 to fund small start-up businesses to assist them in their early stages of development.
A start up is defined as a business not older than 36 months from the date of its registration with the Registration Division and at the time of submitting the application.
For the purpose of this Scheme:
- “Eligible Businesses” means businesses satisfying the Scheme’s requirements;
- “Common Eligible Businesses” means eligible businesses which the Committee deems to be popular in Seychelles; and,
- “Innovative Eligible businesses” means eligible businesses which involves the creation, development and implementation of a new product, process or service, with the aim of improving efficiency, effectiveness or competitive advantage.
Given the Coronavirus pandemic priority consideration shall be given to businesses that can demonstrate:
- How ‘COVID-19 friendly’ their start-up is to ensure their viability in both the short and long run given the ‘new normal’; and
- How they will contribute in a COVID-19 economy especially where it addresses import substitution and exportation.
The following businesses shall NOT be considered for the grant:
- retail and/or wholesale;
- car hiring;
- tobacco and alcohol production;
- dealing in shares, securities and, or other financial instruments;
- dealing in goods other than in the normal course of business;
- carrying on banking, insurance or any other similar activities;
- providing legal, accounting or other professional services as listed under the Seychelles Licenses Act;
- activities relating to the development and leasing of immovable property;
- receiving royalties or license fees;
- operating or managing hotels, hostels, guest houses or residential care homes;
- the holding of shares, whether directly or indirectly, in any company which carries out any of the aforementioned activities.
- The applicant(s) business should NOT be older than 36 months old from the date it was registered with the Registration Division and at the time of submitting the application.
- The applicant(s) business should have a turnover or balance sheet total that does NOT exceed SCR 2 million. Where the business is yet to generate a turnover, the cash flow projection of the 1st year’s annual turnover shall be considered.
- The applicants must NOT have received any similar funding for the proposed business idea from another Government organization. Applicants shall be directed to their respective grants before they can apply for the Seed Capital Grant and they must show proof that they have not been considered under the other grant before they can benefit under this one.
- The applicant’s funding request(s) does not consist of the following:
- Refinancing or existing loans;
- Refunding of previous expenses relating to the business for which the grant is being applied for;
- Payment of airfares;
- Acquisition of bonds;
- Payment for the construction or extension of business premises located at the applicants’ residence (walls, kitchen etc…);
- Purchase of vehicle;
- Purchase of household furniture; the Seed Capital Grant Committee reserves the right to decide what kind of furniture is acceptable for funding; and
- Any other payments or funding which the Committee deems irrelevant to the business.
- If the applicant is applying under the “Common businesses” section of the Scheme, he/she:
- must not have registered or incorporated any business entity previously; and
- The business should be fully owned by Seychellois (e).
The applicant shall benefit only once under this category.
- If the applicant is applying under the “Business Innovation” section of the Scheme he/she:
- Can own another business(es); and
- Should be fully owned by Seychellois (e).
The applicant shall benefit up to two times under this category.
- A copy of the Business Owner(s) NIN(s);
- A copy of the Business’ Registration certificate from the office of the Registrar General;
- A copy of the Business’ Tax Identification Number (TIN) registration letter from the Seychelles Revenue Commission (SRC);
- Where the business is licensable, a copy of the business’ license from the relevant licencing Authority;
- Proof of bank account details relating to the applicant(s) business;
- Certified quotation(s) or proforma(s) or document(s) relating to the grant request;
- A letter from the Bank if the request relates to personal contribution for which the grant is being applied for.
- It will take the Seed Capital Grant Scheme Committee 6 weeks to go through the applications before a response can be issued.
- Some applicants MAY be called for an interview whereby he/she shall be evaluated by a panel of at least 3 Seed Capital Committee members.
- Applications will be evaluated against the committee’s established criteria based on the schemes’ objectives.
- Successful applicants will be notified in writing of the outcome of their application and shall be called in to sign their agreements prior to agreeing to the terms and conditions of the scheme.
- The Committee reserves the right to determine whether payments shall be paid in lump sums or by instalments depending on the purpose of the requested amount.
- Successful applicants’ names shall be published on the Designated Authority’s website or other chosen media sources.
Payment shall be effected within 10 working days after the signed agreements have been submitted to the Ministry responsible for Finance. The amount shall be decided based on the documents provided by the applicants and which have been approved by the Committee.
After 6 months of the disbursement of the Grant, the beneficiary will be subject to monitoring to ensure that the project is being or was implemented according to the Seed Capital Grant guideline. Monitoring will be done by the Committee or through various relevant Agencies such as ESA, District Administrators and Department responsible for Industry and Entrepreneurship Development, just to name a few.
An unsuccessful applicant shall be entitled to apply to an Appeal Panel for –
(a) a review of a decision made by the Committee with regard to that applicant’s application where the applicant is not satisfied with the decision; or
(b) an order where the Committee does not issue a decision within the required time limit.
- An application for review under subsection (1) shall –
(a) be in writing;
(b) specify the reasons for making the appeal; and
(c) be made within 10 working days of the decision.
- Where an application for review is made in accordance with the above, the decision of the Committee shall be suspended until the appeal is heard and determined by the Appeal Panel.
- The Appeal Panel shall make a decision under this section within 30 days of the date of submission of an application for review under (2) above.
- The Appeal Panel may dismiss an application for review or may, if it determines that there is merit in it, order one or more of the following remedies –
(a) recommend the annulment in whole or in part of any unauthorized act or decision;
(b) or remedying of any omission, of the Seed Capital Grant Committee;
(c) recommend a re-evaluation of an application, specifying the grounds for such recommendation.
Further information on the scheme, as well as, information and guidance on the filling in of the application form may be obtained by contacting an ESA officer on + 248 28 90 50.