About us

a little about what makes Spartan different

do I qualify?
what do I need to apply?

what makes Spartan different …

This is a little about what makes Spartan different and what this difference means to you and your business …

  • Spartan has been financing businesses for over 40 years – since 1981
  • we’re all about backing entrepreneurs and building our country
  • we only have eyes for Small & Mid-sized businesses
  • we’re an independent alternative financier
  • what’s special: our customised financing approach for SMEs
  • we’ve designed entrepreneur-centric processes – like our Credit Committee interviewing the entrepreneur
  • our vision is … backing every growing SME in SA


Our Culture …

At Spartan we’re all about backing entrepreneurs and building our country.

  • our style is more entrepreneurial than corporate – why, because we’re in the business of financing entrepreneurs
  • we are candid, curious and conscientious
  • we run on collaboration & teamwork
  • we’re adaptable in our approach – yet begin with the end in mind [always]
  • we believe in personal growth, based on continuous learning – that’s more than just academic
  • but the paradox is we’re also structured in our thinking & process orientated – because we’re a finance business

our fintech tools …

Given that Spartan is exclusively focused on financing SMEs and entrepreneurs – means that we’re serving a target market with expectations of fast turnaround time, convenient engagement and aversion to documentary compliance.

So to meet those expectations – we think technology in all we do. We have created and adopted technology smartly in key aspects of the financing process for SMEs.

We pioneered Software Finance for SMEs in South Africa – and this afforded us the opportunity to be plugged into the forefront of the software ecosystem. These insights and networks have been used to develop and adopt the right technology to aid our financing of SMEs.

Here’s some of the fintech tools we have developed or adopted:

  • Mobile App for our Spartner distribution network [for phone & tablet devices]
  • Comprehensive online finance application widget: online-application
  • Online FICA processing tool – currently under assessment
  • E-signing of all contracting & agreements on smart phones
  • For credit assessment we digitally source approximately 75 data points from 14 digital data sources
  • More to come …

our team …

Kumaran Padayachee
Kumaran PadayacheeCEO


  • B.Comm [Acc] Rhodes
  • Entrepreneurial Masters Program [MIT, USA]
  • Certified Expert in SME Finance [Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Germany]


  • Involved with financing SMEs for past 22 years
  • Fellow of Aspen Global Leadership Network. Member of Entrepreneur’s Organization [EO]
  • Co-Hosts 2 TV shows on Business Day TV: “Big Small Business Show” and “SME Funding”
Alun Frost
Alun Frost Commercial Director


  • B.Comm & Dip Acc [UCT]
  • Post Grad Tax [UNISA]
  • CA (SA)


  • Over 25 years commercial experience, including private equity, venture capital, development finance & working with owner-managed businesses
  • Former CIO of National Empowerment Fund [NEF], managed Women Private Equity Fund
  • Managed private equity & VC funds focused on owner-managed businesses
  • Involved in 6 IPOs on the JSE executive director of 2 JSE listed companies
Yusuf Baker
Yusuf BakerCIO


  • B.Comm [Economics & Info Systems] [UKZN]
  • MBA [GIBS], MA [Applied Ethics], MCOM [IS Management] [WITS]
  • Certified in the Governance of Enterprise IT [CGEIT]
  • Certified Expert in Risk Management [Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Germany]


  • Previously Co-Founder and Director at Xiriuz Systems – developed Banking Back-Office & Finance software
  • Heads up the architecture, development & management of Spartan systems & processes
Claire Busetti
Claire Busetti Non-Executive Director


  • BSc [Chemistry]
  • MBA


  • Serves on several advisory panels in non-executive roles, including: IDC Senior Experts Panel, NEF Investment Committee, WDB’s PE advisory panel, Gauteng Enterprise Propeller, National Advisory Council on Innovation & Special Economic Zones Board, SiMODiSA Executive Advisory Board of
  • Former CIO at Isibaya Fund at Public Investment Corporation [PIC]
  • Former CIO at National Empowerment Fund [NEF]
Sawa Nakagawa
Sawa NakagawaNon-Executive Director


  • BA
  • Masters in International Affairs
  • MBA [Columbia]
  • CFA


  • Former CEO of E2 Investments [impact investor to early stage South African SMEs, formed by Allan Gray]
  • Served on the Investment Committee of the NEF
  • Experience in development finance, investment banking & private equity, having worked at IFC, UBS, ABSA Bank & Barclays Africa

our purpose, values & vision …

Spartan operates in a “vision-led and values driven” environment with a focused strategy and growing discipline of execution. This is a place where passionate people are empowered to contribute and encouraged to challenge themselves and their colleagues.

what our customers say …

“When I approached Spartan for bridging finance I was out of time. They sat with me and asked me questions, where needed they asked for documents – and I was paid the day after. I definitely feel like I am being backed…  I’m not afraid of anything, if there are any new contracts I know they are a phone call away.”

Chithwa Samuel Ndwandwe, MD Sinqobile Equestrian Security

“Such amazing support… I needed project funding and within 16 hours I already had my finance – there are no words that can explain what this did for us – Spartan was like an angel to my company. They understand entrepreneurs… I’ve never seen such from any banks in South Africa. When you know you have Spartan to back you up on projects it’s such an amazing experience.”

Matcom Technologies

Stella Manaka, MD Matcom Technologies

“They were more like a big brother, I mean just knowing that you are doing this project and you got a big brother literally backing you – they say ‘financing that backs entrepreneurs’ and they really do. In terms of the process – they supported us right through, the banks were not able to give us what we wanted but still Spartan was flexible enough to say let’s look at other ways of doing this. To this day I’m proud to be associated as a partner because Spartan literally treated us as a partner, its not just a transaction – a once-off transaction – its more partnership and enabling you to deliver whatever it is you need to.”

Tshidi Mndzebele, CEO AvenirHoldings

“We are building contractors that specialise in high end residential, small commercial and tenant fit-out. Our challenge was that the faster we grew – we couldn’t keep up with the needed cashflow in our pocket. We asked for a type of a bridging finance just to fill in the gap between interim draws that need to be paid out, to the point where we actually receive the money – we need that cashflow in between. The experience was quite straightforward – its very human friendly lets put it that way … the guys get involved immediately and they make it more personal in the sense that they have affection for what’s happening in the business and what’s happening outside – that experience you don’t get with a bank.”

Theuns Vogel, CEO Raven Construction

Promotion of Access to Information

Please download and review our complete Promotion of Access to Information Manual here: download PoAI pdf

corporate social responsibility

Under our social responsibility umbrella, we have proudly supported:

  • Mandela Day River Clean Ups
  • The Johannesburg Library Adult Literacy Program
  • The UN Children’s Fund
  • National Business Initiative
  • Business Against Crime
  • Lerato Love Homes
  • Nelson Mandela Foundation
  • Dr Knak School
  • The National Computer Literacy Programme

We don’t just believe in helping the bigger guys – we believe in uplifting and growing the South African economy from grassroots. That’s why when we can’t help a micro business that doesn’t qualify for finance we assist them with leasing Refurbished IT. These are laptops, desktops and printers that have come off-lease, have been fully refurbished – and are now affordable and accessible to micro’s and start-up businesses.


  • We have a Level-3 B-BBEE rating … download our certificate
  • Audited and accredited independently by Sizwe Ntsaluba Gobodo as per the DTI’s Codes of Good Practice
  • Spartan is 100% black-owned and 33.3% black women-owned
  • We have the outstanding BEE Procurement Recognition level of 125%, meaning that for every 1 Rand our customers spend, they are credited with R1.25 of spending on affirmative procurement

an authorised financial service provider …

Spartan is an Authorised Financial Services Provider. Our licence number is 47631. Spartan is licensed as a financial services provider in terms of Section 8 of the Financial Advisory And Intermediary Services Act, 2002 (Act No. 37 of 2002).

Spartan is a Registered Credit Provider NCRCP8669. Spartan is registered as a Credit Provider in terms of Section 40 of the National Credit Act 34 of 2005, as amended.

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