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SAB Launches Entrepreneurship Campaign To Create 10 000 Jobs In SA

The South African Breweries (SAB) announced yesterday it will help create thousands of jobs in South Africa and increase opportunities for entrepreneurs to become part of its supply chain through its key entrepreneurship programmes.

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South African Breweries
South African Breweries

South African Breweries

The South African Breweries (SAB) announced yesterday it will help create thousands of jobs in South Africa and increase opportunities for entrepreneurs to become part of its supply chain through its key entrepreneurship programmes.

From rural entrepreneurs to big business, SAB has laid the foundation to support entrepreneurs and create a total of 10 000 jobs in South Africa by 2021 using its entrepreneurship programmes – SAB KickStart, SAB Foundation, SAB Thrive and SAB Accelerator, as well as its agriculture programmes to grow emerging farmers.

The company offers a comprehensive and holistic package of entrepreneurship support to develop small businesses from ideation to growth, transforming the supply chain, as well as investing in the potential of entrepreneurs in the broader community. Applicants to the programmes will go through a selection process.

Ricardo Tadeu, Zone President for AB InBev Africa and SAB, says: “We are committed to making a substantial contribution towards South Africa’s national agenda of growing the economy through creating jobs and reducing unemployment, particularly amongst our youth. As a business that started out as an entrepreneur itself, we strongly believe that entrepreneurship is the most appropriate response to this issue and will help to galvanise the economy.

Related: Cash Flow Tips For Small Businesses To Survive Rocky Times

“We recognise that job creation is top of mind amongst South Africans. As one of the country’s leading corporates with a deep sense of pride, and a belief in the future of our country, we have not only a responsibility to help, but a duty to improve the lives of people in communities. We will do this through a range of initiatives, including providing real, authentic and sustainable jobs that we can measure going forward,” says Tadeu.

The commitment to create 10 000 jobs is over and above the Public Interest Commitments (PIC) that SAB’s agreed last year with government after the business combination between AB InBev and SABMiller. Job creation is embedded in the company’s business strategy which focuses on fostering a better world where everyone has an opportunity to improve their livelihoods. The three key priorities of this strategy are job creation; promoting nutrition and health; and reducing harm caused by the misuse of alcohol.

“This is an important vote of confidence in South Africa and a commitment to improve the lives of its people, as well as to invest and participate in expanding the country’s economy,” says Tadeu.

Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) CEO Tanya Cohen says BUSA congratulates SAB on this welcome initiative. “Systemically supporting entrepreneurship opportunities within SAB’s supply chain will make a meaningful contribution to enterprise development and job creation – both of which are critical to transformation for inclusive economic growth,” she says.

Cyril Ramaphosa

Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, in a message, commended SAB’s efforts in bring change to communities. “Your commitment as a corporate citizen to job creation, the empowerment of people and reduction of harm. Business and government can work together to create the better life that we seek to secure for all South Africans.

In the face of poverty, unemployment and inequality, your ambition to create 10 000 sustainable jobs is an important investment in our economy and society.

SAB’s focus on entrepreneurship is a commendable step towards inclusivity and sustainability in our economy and is one that will be rewarded with the unearthing of the energy and talents of those who will benefit from this programme.”

Edith Vries

Edith Vries, Director General for the National Department of Small Business thanked SAB for the role it is playing in supporting entrepreneurs. “Small businesses are at the heart of economies that grow. Our young people need the experience and they need someone to give them an opportunity. I want to thank and salute SAB for providing that opportunity and helping them with that first step.

“I also want to commend SAB for the commitment to create 10 000 jobs over the next 5 years and of your entrepreneurship programmes that you are using to drive this objective. Through SAB’s leadership we can build a new cadre of entrepreneurs into the future.”

Barbara Creecy, Gauteng MEC for Finance

Barbara Creecy, Gauteng MEC for Finance, acknowledged SAB’s contribution to developing entrepreneurship and creating jobs in the province. “We recognise the role that SAB is playing in the economic development of the Gauteng province. The organisation’s entrepreneurship programmes are contributing to entrepreneurship development in the province. It is exciting to participate in launching an initiative that integrates all of these programmes across the value chain.

“SAB stands together with us in acknowledging that unemployment, poverty and job creation are the most important challenges facing our country today. Whether we are in government or civil society, we need to create meaningful opportunities to increase economic participation amongst young people.”

Related: Why Small Business Deserves To Be A Bigger Priority

Driving the ambition to create 10 000 jobs is a call to action to all entrepreneurs through a mass media Entrepreneurship Campaign, beginning with a television commercial launched  this past weekend. The commercial centres on the concept of how ‘One Idea’ can ignite and spark a nation to heed the call to try its hand at entrepreneurship in order to build a better South Africa for all.

“We believe in the power of one idea which is sparked within each entrepreneur and we are committed to supporting these businesses and the potential they hold to bring positive change in people’s lives. We back entrepreneurs 100%,” says Doreen Kosi, Vice President of Legal and Corporate Affairs at AB InBev Africa and SAB.

SAB also hopes in the future to call to action other corporates in South Africa to expand opportunities for real job creation.

‘We hope that our campaign and efforts in the entrepreneurship space will inspire others to support the creation of more jobs in South Africa,” says Kosi.

The SAB Entrepreneurship Programmes will visit six cities across South Africa during a roadshow in the month of October. Details will be available on SAB’s social media platforms. 

SAB Entrepreneurship Programmes:

SAB KickStart

The programme has been running since 1995 and focuses on youth owned businesses. It is focused on investing in youth entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 35.

The programme backs black entrepreneurs with existing, emerging businesses in key industries that are aligned to supply chains.

There are two programmes within the SAB KickStart offering – SAB KickStart Boost and SAB KickStart Ignite.

SAB KickStart Boost is a supply chain readiness programme that’s built around a key objective: Enabling high potential youth owned business to become suppliers of various organisations in the private and public sector, thereby fast-tracking the transformation of the economy. We back entrepreneurs with existing, emerging businesses in key industries to be ready for and to access supply chains, and as a result grow into sustainable businesses that create jobs.

SAB KickStart Ignite supports disruptive innovators that have innovative businesses and products that have high potential to grow into viable businesses that can solve our business challenges and can grow to be future creators of employment. Eligible entrepreneurs receive technical product and business development support which includes one on one mentoring, prototyping, commercialisation, and financial support where required. SAB KickStart Ignite acts as a pipeline of entrepreneurs for more advanced programmes such as SAB KickStart Boost. 

Related: 8 Smart Tips for Small Businesses Seeking Investment

SAB Foundation

The SAB Foundation is an independent trust founded to benefit historically disadvantaged individuals and communities, primarily but not exclusively, through entrepreneurial development in South Africa. It is one of three beneficiaries of SAB’s BBBEE transaction, SAB Zenzele, established in 2010. Key beneficiary groups include women, youth, people in rural areas and people with disabilities.

The long term vision underpinning the SAB Foundation is to ignite a culture of entrepreneurship and social innovation in South Africa as a source of economic growth and a primary source of innovation and job creation.

The focus is on investing in entrepreneurs outside of the value chain and across the country with a particular emphasis on businesses outside major metropolitan areas.

There are two offerings for entrepreneurs within the SAB Foundation – the Social Innovation Awards and Tholoana Enterprise Programme.

The Social Innovation Awards invest in innovative business ideas that can solve social problems. This includes, but is not limited to energy, water, health, education, housing and food security. The Disability Empowerment Awards is a special category for innovation that benefits people with disabilities.

The Tholoana Enterprise Programme is a two year business support and capital grant programme to assist micro and small enterprises to grow and create jobs. 

SAB Thrive

The SAB Thrive Fund is an Enterprise & Supplier Development (E&SD) Fund set up and funded by SAB to transform the company’s supplier base. The Fund has been established in partnership with the Awethu Project, a Black Private Equity Fund Manager and SMME investment company. The SAB Thrive Fund’s mandate is to invest in and transform SAB suppliers such that they become more representative of our country’s demographics. SAB Thrive Fund Investees benefit from 100% Black equity capital and business support. 

SAB Accelerator

The key objective of SAB Accelerator is to grow SAB’s supply chain to be inclusive of black-owned, especially black women-owned businesses. To achieve this an incubator consisting of 10 business coaches and 10 engineers, who are dedicated to growing these suppliers, has been created.  SAB Accelerator will partner with the company’s suppliers and provide coaching and technical expertise, which in turn will help them understand the SAB landscape, its value chain and integrate them into our business. Simply put, SAB Accelerator is a team of people who are dedicated to help black-owned suppliers improve and grow their businesses and in doing so, create much needed jobs.

SAB’s agriculture initiatives

SAB and AB InBev Africa have committed to establishing thriving barley, hops, maize and malt industries in South Africa that strengthen rural employment and job creation, accelerate the development of emerging farmers and enable SA to become a net exporter of hops and malt by 2021. In addition, SA’s technological and innovation base will be strengthened to improve the productivity of emerging and commercial farmers and create new business opportunities. The company will invest R610-million during this period in developing the capacity of new emerging and commercial farmers and increase the amount of local barley that is malted. The strategic intent is to create at least 2 600 new farming jobs in SA.

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The Workspace And MiWay Announce Entrepreneur Competition

To celebrate their collaboration at Village Road, The Workspace and MiWay are launching a competition for South Africa’s entrepreneurs that will see the winner/s given a major advantage to further grow their business.

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Space solutions and coworking specialist, The Workspace, and insurance company, MiWay, recently joined forces at The Workspace’s premises in Village Road, Selby where they have launched an entrepreneurial hub and business development programme in the Johannesburg CBD.

The competition is open to entrepreneurs based in South Africa who have valid identification documents, who run a business with four or less employees and are making an impact in their industry.

“We have always believed in assisting entrepreneurs and small business owners who are members of The Workspace community in whatever way we can. This entrepreneur competition takes it to the next level, giving a voice to our belief in entrepreneurship and its ability to create jobs,” says Mari Schourie, CEO of The Workspace.

Related: 6 Resources For Start-ups Looking For Funding

Morné Stoltz, head of Business Insurance at MiWay, says both companies are committed to upliftment initiatives and economic development. “The entrepreneur competition is a call to action to those vibrant entrepreneurs out there. Start-ups always need a bit of a hand-up and the winner of this one will have a serious advantage once the competition has gone through its paces,” he said.

Schourie and Stoltz agree they’re looking for an entrepreneur who has reinvented the way business is done in his/her industry. “Someone who has been innovative in the product or service being offered to the market,” says Schourie.

“We are looking for an entrepreneur who has or is busy creating a special environment where employees can flourish, and in the process, potentially creating more jobs,” Stoltz adds. “An entrepreneur who makes an impression on the judges due to aspects such as the business’ social impact, attitude, positive entrepreneurial outlook and a good business mind”.

Related: 4 Tips To Secure Funding For Your Start-up

The prize on offer – worth over R230 000 – will help set-up the winning entrepreneur for a period of 12 months, giving them a boost to help build their business.

All information on the Entrepreneur Competition is available on The Workspace website, including criteria, terms and conditions, and of course, the prizes.

For queries, please email events@theworkspace.co.za

Download the competition criteria here.

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Budget 2018/9: 3 Key Tax Areas To Look Out For In The Speech

High political drama in the opening weeks of Parliament aside, most South African business and personal taxpayers are expecting tax hikes across the board from the Finance Minister’s Budget Speech on 21 February.

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As we approach #Budget2018 day, Rob Cooper (tax expert and Director of Legislation at Sage, and chairman of the Payroll Authors Group of South Africa)has a few thoughts about what the Minister could clarify in his statement.

Government already faces a yawning budget deficit, aggravated by the need to find billions of rand to fund a new and unbudgeted-for commitment to free tertiary education.

While some spending cuts could help to release funds, we can expect a one to two percentage point increase in VAT, steep hikes to fuel levies and sin taxes, higher capital gains taxes, and perhaps even personal income tax hikes for high income earners.  We’re also likely to get more info on new taxes such as the carbon tax.

Personal taxpayers, with the exception of low-income earners, should probably not expect the Finance Minister to adjust personal income tax brackets and rebates to fully cater for the effect of inflation. In other words, even if your salary is worth less as a result of inflation, you should probably not be hoping for your effective tax rate to come down to compensate.

Here are three other things I’m looking out for in this year’s budget, each of which will have a major effect for employees and employers alike:

1. National Health Insurance

One of the big will-he-or-won’t-he questions the Finance Minister faces this year is whether to do away with the modest tax credit taxpayers receive for their medical aid payments. Government is eyeing an estimated R25 billion in funds from scrapping these tax credits, to be used to fund the incoming National Health Insurance scheme.

Many of us expected Minister Malusi Gigaba to announce this move in his Mid-Term Budget Speech in October 2017, but he held back. The move is likely to be contentious since a National Treasury analysis shows that 56% of the total credits claimed in 2014-2015 accrued to around 1.9 million taxpayers with a taxable income below R300,000.

In other words, the medical aid credit makes decent healthcare affordable to millions of people who might not otherwise be able to afford it. Taking it away could have dire consequences for the health of millions of lower income South Africans and put even more strain on an already pressurised public healthcare system.

Related: Budget Speech: The Impact on SMEs

2. Travel reimbursements and allowances

Travel reimbursements have long been a pain point for many employers and employees. Up to 28 February 2018, a portion of an employee’s travel costs was treated as remuneration when:

  • The per-kilometre rate used to calculate the travel reimbursement was greater than the SARS-prescribed rate per kilometre.
  • An employee is reimbursed for more than 12,000 business kilometres are reimbursed during the tax year.
  • The reimbursement value was greater than the prescribed maximum number of business km (12 000 km for 2018) multiplied by the prescribed rate per kilometre (R3,55 for 2018).

The result was that skills development levies and UIF contributions were added to something that should be considered as an operational cost rather than a payroll cost. This in turn increased the employer’s cost of employment. These levies and contributions were not assessed at the end of the tax year, so employers could not claim a refund.

We have long argued this regulation should be changed to be fairer to employers and employees alike. As a first step in the right direction, SARS has announced a simplification of the travel allowance and the travel reimbursement provisions, with effect from 1 March 2018.

Under this change, only the portion of the value of the travel expenses reimbursed at a rate above the ‘prescribed’ rate per kilometre will be treated as remuneration.  However, in future, we would like to see SARS handle travel reimbursements in the same way as it treats subsistence allowances for employees when they travel.

The excess portion of the subsistence allowance will be taxed on assessment, but it is not remuneration for the purposes of Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE), skills development levies and UIF.

3. Employment Tax Incentive

I’m a fan of the Employment Tax Incentive (ETI) as an innovation geared towards addressing South Africa’s youth unemployment crisis, and the decision to extend the programme until the end of the 2019 tax year is welcome. However, administration of the scheme has always been complex for SARS and employers alike, a factor that has made some companies hesitate to take advantage of it.

Though SARS and the National Treasury have tweaked the ETI over the years, I would welcome further simplification of the definitions and calculations. That said, I don’t expect much news about the ETI this year, apart from alignment with the National Minimum Wage expected to be introduced from 1 May 2018.

Follow us on @SageGroupZA on 21 Feb for LIVE expert insights from the annual Budget Speech.

For more information about Sage’s annual tax seminars, please visit: http://go.sage.com/NPS_18Q1_C4L_ZA_EVCU_HR0310_20thAnnualPayrollTaxSeminarLP

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Pregnancy: What Are Employee’s Rights?

From the 12-16 is Pregnancy Awareness Week and a labour law expert talks about rights around pregnancy for employees and employers.

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Anticipating the birth of a baby is an exciting time for soon-to-be parents, but it can be stressful for couples as they negotiate companies’ leave policies and a possible reduction of income.

Jennifer Da Mata, Managing Director of Strata-G Labour Solutions, says employees need to familiarise themselves with their employers’ policies to ensure they understand what their rights are. “According to South Africa’s Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA), female employees have the right to four consecutive months’ unpaid maternity leave.

“An employee may commence maternity leave any time from four weeks prior to the expected date of birth, or on a date determined by a medical practitioner or midwife as necessary for the protection of the employee or unborn baby’s health.

“The balance of leave needs to be taken after the baby is born, bearing in mind that no employee may work for six weeks after the birth of the baby, unless a medical practitioner or midwife certifies the employee is fit to resume her duties,” adds Da Mata.

There is no provision in South Africa’s legislation that stipulates when employees need to inform employers that they are pregnant. Employees must, however, notify their employers in writing on when they intend to commence maternity leave and when they expect to return to work.

Da Mata notes that some companies offer paid maternity leave, but this is at their own discretion. “Companies may offer employees full pay or a portion of their salary, as they see fit, but they are not legally obliged to do so. Employees who are not remunerated while on maternity leave are entitled to claim maternity benefits through the Department of Labour.”

Related: Maternity Leave – The Rights of Your Employees

And what about paternity leave?

According to Da Mata, employees are not entitled to paternity leave in terms of the BCEA, although one of the major amendments proposed to this Act includes making provision for paternity leave. “It is proposed that 10 consecutive days’ paternity leave be granted to a father following the birth of a child.

“Some companies have already adopted paternity leave as part of their human resource policies. We urge companies that haven’t done so yet, to keep the proposed amendments in mind when reviewing their internal company policies,” he says.

Currently, fathers are entitled to three days paid family responsibility leave during each annual leave cycle for the birth of a child. However, it is likely that this leave entitlement will be replaced by the proposed paternity leave amendments. “While the 10 days leave is great news for fathers, it will take a huge chunk out of their salary if paternity leave is ultimately promulgated as unpaid leave,” says Da Mata.

As a matter of precaution employees need to ensure that their employers have registered them for Unemployment Insurance benefits.  This will allow them to receive some benefit while on maternity or paternity leave. “Sections 34 and 37 of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1966 (Act 30 of 1966), provide for the payment of maternity leave and legislative amendments will be proposed to Cabinet to improve these benefits,” explains Da Mata.

It is important for employers to note that in terms of section 187 (1) (e) of the Labour Relations Act, 1995, the dismissal of an employee on account of her pregnancy, intended pregnancy, or any reason related to her pregnancy, is automatically unfair. The definition of dismissal in section 186 of the Labour Relations Act, 1995, includes the refusal to allow an employee to resume work after she has taken maternity leave in terms of any law, collective agreement or her contract.

Related: Unlegislated ‘Other’ Leave Not A Right Says CRS Technologies

Da Mata says employers cannot unfairly discriminate against employees based on their pregnancy status. “If someone is dismissed for being pregnant, the dismissal may be held to be automatically unfair and the employee will be able to claim reinstatement or up to 24 months’ compensation in the labour court.

“Our advice to clients is to adhere to South Africa’s Labour legislation, be clear on their policies about maternity and paternity leave and consider the benefits of being on the right side of the law. This will ultimately cultivate a happy and productive workforce,” concludes Da Mata.

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