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The 2023 Eighth Series Banknotes of South Africa

The 2023 eighth series of South African Rand banknotes are available in the same denominations as the current series: R10, R20, R50, R100, and R200. All five banknotes continue to feature Nelson Mandela on the obverse side. One notable feature is the rings behind Mandela's head, which consist of the South African flag and text from parts of the South African constitution. On the lower right-hand corner we find SPARK®Live Truspin color-changing animals. As with previous issues, the banknotes maintain the design featuring 'Africa's Big 5' animals. The green R10 note features 2 rhinos, the brown R20 note features 3 elephants, the purple R50 note features 2 lions, the blue R100 note displays an image of 2 Cape buffaloes, and the orange R200 note features a leopard and her cub.

The following languages appear on the back of the banknotes:

  • 10 Rand: Afrikaans and Siswati.

  • 20 Rand: Setswana and isiNdebele.

  • 50 Rand: isiXhosa and Tshivenda.

  • 100 Rand: Sesotho sa Leboa/Sepedi and Xitsonga.

  • 200 Rand: isiZulu and Sesotho.

The denominations, sizes and paper (cotton substrate) remain unchanged. However, the following enhancements have been made with the theme of Look, Feel & Tilt:

Look features:

  • The colors have been subtly enhanced to improve visual differentiation between the denominations, catering to the partially sighted communities.

  • The watermark depicts the shadow image of the 'Big 5' animal unique to each denomination, along with its denomination numeral.

  • The preamble to South Africa's Constitution is featured in micro-lettering on the left and right sides of the main portrait.

  • Large denomination numerals have been incorporated on the front and back of the banknotes, printed in positive and negative text to assist the partially sighted community.

  • To further assist the partially sighted, each denomination now has a shape that encapsulates the see-through perfect print registration of the animal unique to that denomination. These shapes are a diamond on the R10, a rectangle on the R20, a circle on the R50, a hexagon on the R100, and an oval on the R200. When held up to the light, a complete image of the 'Big 5' animal can be seen.

Feel features:

The tactile marks have been enhanced to support the blind and partially blind communities in differentiating between the denominations. The tactile marks are located on the short edge of the R10 and R20 denominations, and on the long edge of the R50, R100, and R200 denominations. The gaps between the sets of tactile marks are counted to determine the denomination of the banknote: R10 – one gap, R20 – two gaps (on the short edge); R50 – one gap, R100 – two gaps, and R200 – three gaps (on the long edge).

  • The Coat of Arms, the words 'South African Reserve Bank,' the Governor's name and signature, the main portrait, and the denomination numeral are in raised print on the front of the banknotes.

  • The words 'South African Reserve Bank' in two of the 11 official languages, the denomination numeral, and the 'Big 5' animals are in raised print on the back of the banknotes.

Tilt features:

  • SPARK®Live Truspin, a color-changing ink with a spinning circle feature, is incorporated within the 'Big 5' animal on the bottom right of the banknote. The circle spins and changes color when the banknote is tilted.

  • The security thread shows dynamic movement and matches the color change on the SPARK®Live Truspin when the banknote is tilted. The abbreviation 'SARB,' the denomination numeral, and the 'Big 5' animal unique to each denomination are visible on the security thread. When the banknote is held up to the light, the security thread appears as a continuous solid dark line.

  • The denomination numeral appears as a latent image or hidden image on each banknote. The latent image can be seen by tilting the banknote almost horizontally to your eye.

The dimensions of the upgraded Mandela banknotes are the same as the previous banknotes in circulation.

Height Width

R10: 70mm 128mm

R20: 70mm 134mm

R50: 70mm 140mm

R100: 70mm 146mm

R200: 70mm 152mm

Ten Rand

Twenty Rand

Fifty Rand

One Hundred Rand

Two Hundred Rand

Security Features

The SARB has made it easier to authenticate a genuine banknote and reject a counterfeit note. There are multiple security features on each banknote. All you need to do is Look, Feel and Tilt.

Images & information courtesy of the South African Reserve Bank & Banknoteworld

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