Tuesday, 10 May 2016

VW SA committed to growing black-owned supplier base

Volkswagen SA (VW SA) recently held its first black-owned supplier day – a move geared towards heeding the government’s call for the creation of black industrialists.

The automaker recently approved the addition of 45 new manufacturing suppliers to its database in an attempt to comply with amendments made to the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) codes relating to enterprise and supplier development.

“The concept of this pioneering suppliers’ day in our industry originates from Volkswagen’s determination to expand its business to black-owned suppliers. This will ensure that we continue to support the economic transformation in SA,” said VWSA MD and Chairman Thomas Schaefer.
VW SA committed to growing black-owned supplier base
The initiative, which was started six months ago in collaboration with the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, began with the vehicle manufacturer approaching over 100 companies – from industry associations and organised businesses to business support bodies and government agencies – for assistance in creating a list of potential black-owned suppliers’ database.

Schaefer said 430 companies applied to be part of the companies database, but after stringent checks and balances were completed, 45 companies were ultimately approved.

“The compilation of this list motivated us to organise this event in the hope of attracting new black-and-women-owned manufacturing suppliers to help us meet, comply with and earn the relevant BBBEE points,” he said.

Taking the revised BBBEE code into account, VWSA’s content percentage is 70%, meaning the company will need to sign up 500 new black-owned suppliers in order to meet the criteria to earn points.

“Today is the start of a new beginning that will allow us to increase the spread of our own and the industries’ supplier base, as well as grow the number of suppliers that meet the BBBEE criteria for the Enterprise & Supplier Development element,” Schaefer added.

Speaking at an event held on Thursday in Uitenhage, Port Elizabeth, to exhibit the new suppliers, Trade & Industry Minister Rob Davies applauded VWSA for driving transformation in the industry and for its vision and commitment to “transformation through action and for providing insight into the challenges that the automative industry faces in securing relationships with black-owned suppliers”.

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