Words of warning for small businesses
Small businesses should be wary of broad-based BEE advisory companies that have not addressed the new simplified codes announced last month, say industry advisors.
Rienzo Colpo, chief executive of business advisory company Caird Group, warned that there were some advisory companies out there that might be taking advantage of exempt companies that were unaware of BEE changes.
"An Exempt Micro Enterprises is any enterprise that has a yearly turnover of less than R5million a year. Qualifying Small Enterprises fall between R5million and R35million," he said.
Sandile Hlophe, director of BEE advisory services at KPMG, said though qualifying companies should get their exemption certificate as soon as possible, they should not lose track of BEE code updates because they were exempt.
"In my view, every businessman in South Africa needs to understand what BEE is and how it affects your company," Hlophe said.
"After all, everybody who gets into business does so in order to grow their business, so the time will eventually come when smaller companies will become qualifying businesses [and have to adhere to BEE practises]."
Hlophe said smaller qualifying businesses earning more than R5million should use the tools the Trade and Industry Department provided before calling in a costly consultant.
The codes are expected to be gazetted early this year.