2019 SAB Foundation Social Innovation Award

Deadline: March 28, 2019.

The SAB Foundation’s Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Awards are now open for entry and eligible entrepreneurs and businesses are encouraged to apply. The awards carry total prize money of more than R12 million in grant funding and business support with the winning innovator set to walk away with R1.3 million.



  • The SAB Foundation Social Innovation Awards will be open to any innovation solution that offers a credible prospect of meeting a demonstrable social and/ or economic need evidenced by the SAB Foundation’s target low-income beneficiary groups (with a particular emphasis on innovation that benefits women, youth, people with disability and those in rural areas), as well as demonstrating potential as a sustainable business.
  • Entries are welcomed from South African individuals, innovators, entrepreneurs, social enterprises and university departments. Entrants may enter as individuals on their own, or as members of a team, in which case one individual team leader shall complete the online application form.
  • The innovation entered must be the original work of the applicant and a true innovation and/or a significant improvement on an existing technology, product, service, and production method or business model.
  • Product innovation covers innovations in both goods and services, which can be divided into new or improved products. A new product has different characteristics and intended uses than existing products. It may use new technologies, knowledge and products or a combination of these. An improved product is an existing product whose performance is significantly increased; in terms of either increased output or a reduction in cost.
  • Process innovation is the adaption or creation of improved ways to deliver a product or service. It could come from changes in knowledge, perception and understanding. For poverty reduction, process innovations can increase the level of service delivery to beneficiaries, or enable practitioners to reach previously untouched groups or individuals.
  • The innovation solution must have progressed past the “blue-sky” thinking stage: there must be some evidence of investment by the applicant. This means that applicants must be able to show proof that prior to applying, they have spent time and/or money developing the innovation: planning, developing and testing prototypes, market and industry research, developing a business plan.
  • Applications are open to all South African citizens of 18 years or older. All participants (“Entrants”) must submit a certified copy of their South African Identity Document with their online applications.



1. Online applications open 28 February 2019 and close on 28 March 2019 at
midday (12h00).
2. Read through this brochure to check if your organisation or idea would be a good fit for the Social Innovation Awards as a result of having an impact on at least one of the four focus areas (women, youth, persons with disability or persons living in rural areas).
4. Read through the online application guidance document.
5. Complete the online application form. The link is available on the SAB Foundation website (http://sabfoundation.co.za/social-innovation-awards/) or click here to go through to the application page.
6. Make sure you complete and submit your application before the deadline.
7. Early submissions are strongly encouraged.
8. The SAB Foundation Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Awards seek the best ideas to enhance the lives of previously disadvantaged South Africans. Specific consideration will be given during the judging process to the race, gender, age and disability status of applicants.





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