Frequently Asked Questions

The Black Umbrellas Virtual Incubator is an online platform that is designed to offer training, mentoring support and business coaching from anywhere with an internet connection. No matter where you are in your entrepreneurial journey, we’ll help you build a resilient, compliant and sustainable business.

Black Umbrellas Application Process

How long has the programme been operational?

Black Umbrellas was established in August 2006 to provide funding, resources, training and support to emerging black-owned small, medium and micro enterprises.

Do I Have to be in a particular industry?

No, Black Umbrellas is a generalist incubator. All sectors welcome.

Do I have to be a 100% black-owned business?

No, any business can apply to join the virtual incubation programmes. You have to be a 100% black-owned business or black person and unable to afford the virtual incubation fees in order to apply for a bursary.

What will I learn?

How to formalise my business to ensure it is compliant with all applicable legislation as well as developing a business model canvas using the lean start up methodology together with a business plan and business pitch.

Do I need to participate in the full programme?

If you complete the Business Foundation Programme, you can choose to continue with the Business Readiness Programme. Entrepreneurs who are assessed as qualifying for the Business Readiness Programme without having to complete the Business Foundation Programme can be fast-tracked to join the Business Readiness Programme.

What does a typical week/month look like?

One-on-one session with Business Coach, one-on-one sessions with Mentor (Minimum 1 hr per month), complete online training, participate in incubation activities (Virtual workshops, peer learning activities, sharing experiences, etc.)

What tools will be available to me?

E-Learning platform, dynamic Incubation stages to complement business lifecycle stage, professional Business Coaching, Mentor Programme, Business Lounges that can be accessed on an ad-hoc basis and can also be used as an alternative to WFH (work from home) These spaces provide printing, meeting room, access to high speed fibre internet and audio-visual facilities. Co-working spaces that provide ad-hoc or short to medium term office space and bookkeeping services

What support can i get?

2 hours of coaching with a business coach and 1 hour with a professional mentor per month. Bookkeeping services are provided at an extra charge.

What are the products available to entrepreneurs?

E-Learning zone Dynamic Incubation stages to complement business lifecycle stage Professional Business Coaching Mentor Programme Business Lounges that can be accessed on an ad-hoc basis and can also be used as an alternative to WFH (work from home). These spaces provide printing, meeting room, access to high speed fibre internet and audio-visual facilities. Co-working spaces that provide ad-hoc or short to medium term office space Bookkeeping services

How much does it cost?

Business Foundation Programme has a once-off fee to be paid upfront of R17,250-00 (R15,000.00 plus VAT) Business Readiness Phase has an initial upfront fee of R10,350-00 paid by Credit Card/Debit Card/Instant EFT via NetCash and then 9 equal payments of R4,600-00 per month. Total is R51,750-00 (R45,000 ex VAT)

Does Black Umbrellas take equity?

The Black Umbrellas Program takes no equity, and there are no restrictions on participating in other incubator/accelerator programs.