SAB Pledges Major Boost To Entrepreneurship And To Create 10 000 Jobs By 2021 - This Is How

Brewing giant is banking on entrepreneurship to help drive the economy


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Some of the women that are beneficiaries of the SAB Lerumo Supplier Development Programme. Clockwise: Bolwana Margaret Shivanda, Audrey Thuli Thabethe, Absie Pantshwa, Lerato Nakedi, Nerisha Pramlall, Jacqueline Naidu

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The South African Breweries (SAB) announced today 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.

SAB has pledged its support to entrepreneurs and to create 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 commitment is over and above the Public Interest Commitments (PIC) that SAB agreed to last year with government after the business combination between AB InBev and SABMiller.

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 [with] an entrepreneur itself, we strongly believe that entrepreneurship is the most appropriate response to this issue and will help to galvanise the economy.  

"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.

From rural entrepreneurs to big business, here are 6 programmes that SAB has in place to achieve their entrepreneurship and job creation goal.  

1. SAB KickStart 
The programme focuses on investing in youth entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 35.

It 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. 

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.

2. 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.

3. 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.

4. 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. 

5. 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.

6. SAB Lerumo Supplier Development
The initiative is targeted at black woman owned companies who are struggling to break through the barriers and improve their market access capabilities.

The programme intends to impart core skills to the women to enable them to improve their market access opportunities and to better manoeuvre a large corporate with a complex procurement structure.

Twenty-three entrepreneurs were selected on their capabilities and potential to thrive under a targeted growth focused intervention.

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