Frequently Asked Questions 4th Call

Botswana Innovation Fund (BIF) Fourth Call For Proposals Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Botswana Innovation Fund’s Governance structure?

The Accounting Officer (Permanent Secretary – MoTE) has delegated the Botswana Innovation Hub as a government agency to administer the implementation of the Botswana Innovation Fund as provided for under the statutory instrument of 2017.

The Minister (MoTE) has appointed the BIF Committee members to have oversight over the implementation of the Botswana Innovation Fund. The Committee consists of independent members of the public from private sector and the business community.  The Botswana Innovation hub has established a fund administration office and will act as the secretariat for the Botswana Innovation Fund.

2.Who can receive Funding?

The funding is for companies registered as Members of the Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) as per the provision of the funding instrument.

BIF applicants who are recipients are simultaneously accepted as Botswana Innovation Hub Members.

3. How do I submit an application?

Applications are submitted through designated electronic platforms.

The Botswana Innovation Fund accepts applications through electronic platforms in a bid to ensure transparency and an auditable process.

No late applications will be accepted.  If the Fund experiences a collapse of the system, the administrators will consider an extension.  Technical glitches experienced by applicants are expected last minute and will therefore not form consideration for the acceptance of a late application.  Applicants are encouraged to

4. How many applications can an applicant submit?

Only 1 application per company or lead person/s.

Current recipients with ongoing/projects not yet closed are not eligible to apply.

5. What are the BIF requirements in respect of intellectual property?

The applicant should own the intellectual property.  It is expected that the primary ownership of the intellectual property will reside in a Botswana registered company.

6. What is the funding limit per project?

Unless stated in a Call for Proposal, the Botswana Innovation Fund has no floor or upper limits per project.  The limits will be determined in consideration of available funds.

7. What is funded?

The Botswana Innovation Fund provides for costs that are directly related to the development of a new product, process or new technical services which surpass existing products, processes or technical services in terms of their functions, parameters or features.

Please refer to the Botswana Innovation Fund Guidelines .

Specific calls may include Commercial System or Landing (TRL 8) – which will cover costs associated with landing the solution in the market.   Please note that as a result Marketing activities are now included.

TRL 0IdeaUnproven concept, no testing has been performed
TRL 1Basic ResearchPrinciples postulated and observed but no experimental proof available
TRL 2Technology FormulationConcept and application have been formulated
TRL 3Applied ResearchFirst laboratory tests completed.  Proof of Concept
TRL 4Smal Scale PrototypeBuilt in a laboratory Environment (ugly prototype)
TRL 5Large Scale PrototypeTested in intended environment
TRL 6Prototype systemTested in intended environment close to expected performance
TRL 7Demonstration SystemOperating in operation environment in per commercial scale
TRL 8Commercial SystemManufacturing Issues solved, Market establishment. Pre-Commercialisation Demonstration
TRL 9Full Commercial ApplicationTechnology available for consumers, Full Commercial Roll out


8. Are the Youth the target market for the Botswana Innovation Fund?

The target market is any enterprise/organisation involved in the development of Innovative solutions.

9. How does the funding work?

The Botswana Innovation Fund only covers costs that are related to the development of the product or process.  The Funding Guidelines therefore provide more details on eligible and non-eligible costs.  The disbursement of funds will be milestone related.

10. What is the Complaints Process for the Botswana Innovation Fund?

The Complaints Process for the Botswana Innovation Fund is available on the BIH Website.

11. When is the next call?

The Botswana Innovation Fund (BIF) will conduct an annual call. If there are any unallocated funds on first call, there will be consideration for a second call. There is provision under the open innovation framework for multiple calls. Complimentary funding to the BIF may augment different approach to call implementation.

Application Tips:

  1. Do Not leave submission of Application until last minute
  2. Answer all Questions on the application Platform (do not keep on referring that evaluators go and look for your answers elsewhere)
  3. Attachments that Support the application are welcome. You may also provide links.  But please ensure that the link works as the evaluators cannot call you in terms of the Fund’s process if the link doesn’t work.
  4. As requested, please attach the budget in the format required and provided by the Fund.
  5. Ensure that the Budget is detailed enough (clearly showing activities, and responsible persons)
  6. Be clear on what exactly the innovation is and provide comparisons with what is available in the market so that you clearly show what is unique about your solution.

The Budget Link which is also on the application form: