Vuma sees a B-BBEE deal come to life

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Vuma, a Reputation Management conducted a Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBBE) transaction with three members of the company’s executive team.

The result of the transaction makes the company now 51% black-owned and 30% black female-owned.

The three members acquired the 51% stake through a loan provided by Vuma Reputation Management.

The debt will be repaid from dividends generated by the company.

Tshepo Sefotlhelo, executive director of operations, Palesa Madumo, executive director of strategy, and Kgomotso Moalusi, executive director of client centricity and media, have acquired the 51% stake through a loan provided by Vuma.

The debt will be repaid from dividends generated by the company.

The company is a reputation management, crisis communications, stakeholder management, media relationship management and training agency.

Founded in 2005 by Janine Hills, it has provided advisory and consulting services to at least 50 JSE-listed companies.

Sefotlhelo commented, “As shareholders, our goal is to double the size of the business in the next three years through acquiring long-term clients and growing existing business. We also see huge potential for new opportunities on the rest of the continent, where we have affiliates that we will collaborate with to secure new business.”

Moalusi said she is honoured to be a black female investor in a slow-transforming sector, “As a black African female reputation management and communications professional, I believe the sector requires fast-tracking, from a black ownership perspective; therefore, this deal will certainly assist in the journey to levelling the playing field.”

Hills, as founder and managing director, will continue to provide leadership and expertise to the company.

Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) programme, was officially launched after the first democratic election in South Africa took place in 1994.

As the ANC government ascended to office, it wa s faced with giant challenges of redressing past imbalances caused by centuries of colonial oppression.

BEE became an instrument to empowering the disenfranchised black majority through empowerment deals involving individuals and groups.

The programme continues to receive much criticism as it has mostly enriched a selected politically connected elite, while the masses still languish in poverty.

Fronting is another dilemma facing BEE.
Various projects have been tried and tested, these include company empowerment schemes, partnerships between emerging black enterprises and established white businesses, and at times black entrepreneurs receiving grants from white business, among other projects.

All this led to the South African government to attempt to broaden BEE and instituted Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBBE) in 2007. The jury is still out as to whether B-BBEE is working.

However, when a different initiative comes around it should not be ignored.

That much is true when this recent B-BBEE transaction is concerned.