Doing Business in Sandton, February 2018



Welcome to the Megaplex Business Booster Newsletter as advertised in our longstanding Newsletter: "Shopping in Sandton".  This short monthly newsletter will give you quick tips that can make your business more profitable, safer and --possibly-- more fun!  

Online Business Tip: The Importance of Regular Backups

(this tip first appeared in the Software Africa Newsletter - January 2018: subscribe here)

The burglary of a laptop and cell phone from our office in the early hours of 15 December impressed on us yet again the importance of backups, preferably off-site backups!  Last year, an acquaintance had a flood and lost both his data and his on-site backups.

There are a number of cloud backup solutions available at various prices. We use IronTree automatically backing up to the Cloud every night from our server.   Contact us to be put in touch with our service providers. With USB flash drives available in sizes from 128GB to 1TB at affordable prices, it is possible to take a snapshot of your hard drive and lodge it with a friend or relative, or in your FNB safety deposit box (!) as a back-backup.


The VAT Rate Changes on 1 April

Making April Fools of all of us, particularly those who still support our extravagant government, to pay for essential expenditure like Nkandla, a comfortable retirement for our dear* former President, endemic government corruption, bailouts for SAA and Eskom, one of the biggest and least effective cabinets on the planet and (if there is any money left) discretionary items like hospitals, education, social grants, police and the courts, the VAT rate will rise by one percentage point (a 7.1% increase) to 15% on 1 April 2018, the first rise in the democratic era.
If you are an unpaid tax collector collecting VAT for SARS, you will need to adjust the VAT rate in your accounting system.  There are two strategies to do it:

  • In advance, set up a new 15% VAT code for use from April onwards. When all March invoices have been issued (and received invoices have been entered), and before issuing (or receiving) any April invoices, deactivate the old VAT code and activate the new one. If you have to enter or receive invoices for both months for a period, you may have to have both codes active for a while --use carefully!


  • Over the Easter weekend, probably on 29/30/31 March or 2/3 April, when all March invoices have been issued (and received invoices have been entered), and before issuing (or receiving) any April invoices, edit your existing 14% VAT code and change it to 15%. This is easier, but you must finish all the March invoices before starting any April ones.

Next month we will look at how to do this in QuickBooks.
* "Dear" in the sense of "Expensive", Dear.

Helping Small-Business Owners Save on Tax

Small Business guru Peter Carruthers has a new course to help you save on tax, if not in the current personal tax year (which ends in a few hours), then in the next!  His second webinar will run tonight.  He writes:

Tonight at 19:30 we will look at how to use your business to pay many personal costs. Legally.

Money in the business is pre-tax money. Each time you use that pre-tax money to buy anything you're using 100 cents in each Rand.

Money in your hands is post-tax money. Your business (or employer) gives you 100 cents in each Rand. But SARS takes between 18 cents and 45 cents from each Rand before you can use it.
(How much SARS takes from each Rand depends on how much you earn each year.)

This means you can save between 18c and 45c in each Rand by redirecting the flow.

We'll look at some advanced ways to do this. As we do so you will see two which enhance your retirement options. (Without putting money into formal retirement funds.)

If you are registered for the course, you don't have to join us at the live event at 7:30PM tonight. I will post the material online for you tomorrow morning.

But if you do want to join us, click here to reserve your seat (if you haven't already registered).
We'll keep the language light and leave the legalese in the books.

Warm regards
Peter Carruthers

All the best from Rick at,a,

the most helpful website for shops in Sandton.

To view other issues of the newsletter, click these links (same page):
2018: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, Subscribe here or locate another period.