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University Technology Fund

The SA SME Fund launched the University Technology Fund (UTF) on 31 January 2020, a first of its kind in Africa. UCT and Stellenbosch University are the first two universities that will participate in the fund, which will provide UCT spin-off companies with access to R50m of funding for Series Seed and Series A funding rounds as well as additional seed funding to support innovation projects within the university. UCT is required to co-invest R20m alongside the UTF in the ventures and does this via its Evergreen Fund.

Approaches to the UTF are made through RC&I as UCT approval and support for a project must be confirmed first.  Please contact Kirsten Amsterdam for details.

A unique aspect of the UTF is that the SA SME Fund has provided smaller amounts for very early-stage investment – PreSeed (up to R500k) and Seed (up to R1.5m) – in order to develop the pipeline that may be invested in during either Series Seed (pre-revenue, R5m) or Series A (post-revenue, ~R12.5m)

In terms of the Agreement, UCT is obliged to invest 25% of the PreSeed funding going into a project to match the SA SME Fund’s 75% investment.  With Series investments UCT participates at a ratio of 2:5 with the UTF.  In these investments, the terms and conditions are the same for the UTF and UCT and often a single Share Subscription Agreement is entered into with the company by the investors.