Group Five BEE plan receives high rating

South African construction and building materials company Group Five on Wednesday announced that economic empowerment rating agency Empowerdex has given its proposed black economic empowerment (BEE) transaction a score of more than 80%.

Group Five said in a statement that the score relates to the ownership component as defined in the score card in the Codes of Good Practice on Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment from the Department of Trade and Industry.

The ownership component of the scorecard measures voting rights, economic interest and net equity.

Under the proposed BEE transaction, Group Five will have direct black ownership of 26,1% with immediate voting and economic rights.

The consortium is made up of two broad-based empowerment entities, the iLima Consortium and Mvelaphanda Group Limited—iLima Mvela.

The consortium will hold 21,6% of Group Five and current and future black management and broad-based employees will hold 4,5%.

In its report, Empowerdex said: “The proposed deal includes new entrants in the form of iLima Group—a 100% black-owned firm with several years’ experience in the construction industry.

“Other new entrants include broad-based participants in a broad-based scheme, which includes black employees at lower job-grade levels.

“In addition, beneficiaries include black beneficiaries of a management trust within Group Five. Further evidence of Group Five’s commitment to empowerment is their proposed intention to grow and develop iLima Projects through enterprise-development initiatives.”

Group Five shareholders will vote on the transaction on September 29.

Group Five CEO Mike Lomas said: “We are very pleased with the rating we received, as it was important to us to do a transaction that empowers a broad base of people. The transaction has been designed to complement our overall strategic objectives towards implementing broad-based empowerment in our business. It includes employees, entrepreneurs, women and communities.

“We are also particularly pleased with our enterprise-development agreement with iLima, who will be working with us to accelerate the transformation of Group Five to the right skills base at the right levels in the company.”

He added that the long-term aim is to consolidate this business eventually into Group Five, leading to further transformation of the group.

“Mvelaphanda has been brought in as a strategic partner due to its involvement with Nepad [the New Partnership for Africa’s Development] and its comprehensive network in Africa, particularly in the oil, gas and mining fields, which are our stated areas of ambition in Africa. We are excited about this important step for Group Five.”—I-Net Bridge

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