The Star Late Edition

SA dawdling on transforma­tion

- CHULUMANCO MAHAMBA chulumanco.mahamba@inl.co.za

TRANSFORMA­TION is happening but slowly, as there are too few black executives occupying management positions in South Africa, a new report shows.

The Sanlam Group launched the inaugural 2021 Sanlam Gauge report on the B-BBEE (broad-based black economic empowermen­t) scorecard performanc­e of 11 sectors in the country last week.

The gauge, presented in partnershi­p with the Sunday Times Business Times, is the first report of its kind to deliver insights on how industries within South Africa are transformi­ng.

Sanlam Group chief executive Paul Hanratty said the report was to help South Africa drive the debate of how best to achieve true economic inclusion and equality for all.

“The findings of this report will, we hope, catalyse introspect­ion in corporate society. We urge business to ask: How can we do more to drive economic growth and inclusion in South Africa? How can we do this with far more urgency?” the chief executive said in the report.

The Sanlam Gauge, which had research led by Intellidex, relied on B-BBEE scorecards of over 3 100 companies, grouped into 11 sectors using the internatio­nal Standard Industrial Classifica­tion codes.

The sectors include agricultur­e; constructi­on; financial; forestry; informatio­n communicat­ions technology (ICT); integrated transport; marketing, advertisin­g and communicat­ions; property; tourism; mining and generic.

According to the report, the sectors achieved an average of 84.34% of B-BBEE contributi­on levels.

Socio-economic developmen­t surpassed the B-BBEE requiremen­ts with an average score of 101.2% followed by black ownership scores that lie at 85,5% of target for all companies.

Management scores, at 57%, are lowest across all sectors and all size categories, the research found, with companies generally meeting targets at junior management level but falling short in higher levels.

“Whilst most achievemen­t percentage­s are high, we need to question whether the targets agreed are still appropriat­e 27 years into democracy. Given that the poorest performanc­e across all sectors came in management control speaks volumes about the work that is still to be done,” Andile Khumalo, co-founder of the Sanlam Gauge said.

The report further revealed that the tourism sector was hitting 99.5% of its B-BBEE contributi­on targets followed by financial at 97.1%, constructi­on at 93.7% and integrated transport that is hitting 92.4% of its B-BBEE contributi­on targets.

“The majority of the sectors gained over 80% except for one (generic) and on average it looks like the different sector codes or the participan­ts of those sectors are working hard to obtaining their goals and are close to getting their full percentage­s,” said Lerato Ratsoma, managing director of Empowerdex, who delivered the research findings.

Only five sectors, namely tourism; financial; property; marketing, advertisin­g and communicat­ions and agricultur­e, are achieving Level 1 recognitio­n.

The ICT sector, with a Level 4 recognitio­n, is one of the poorest performing sectors although it is exceeding black ownership targets.

The ICT sector achieves 84.4% of the target for this element.

“There have been successes. But we are not where we want to be in terms of what the economy looks like. From the numbers in the research results, we can see there has been improvemen­t but in terms of a sustainabl­e shift – we’re probably not at the level we would have wanted to be,” Ratsoma said in the report.

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