This research aimed to explore the influence of the institutional context on the growth-potential of new businesses in South Africa. The purpose of this study is to highlight the major responsibility of bureaucracy to enable high-growth entrepreneurship in emerging economies by building a favourable economic, social and legal environment, known as the institutional context.An adapted research model was defined through an extensive literature review of prior studies in the fields of both institutional theory and entrepreneurship theory. An online survey was administered to many South African entrepreneurs via a number of databases across the country. The responses were then collected and analysed by means of a multiple regression analysis to test the six hypotheses of the research model.The results revealed that all the identified institutional factors were found to have significant influences on high-growth entrepreneurship in the intended directions, while access to technology was found to have the largest influence, and the regulatory framework also contributed substantially. This implies that the bureaucracy of the country has to consider all the identified factors when attempting to design a supportive institutional environment to stimulate high-growth entrepreneurship. However, the greatest results will be achieved by focusing specifically on the access to an extensive technological infrastructure and an effective regulatory framework.