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The next decade requires bold commitment and accountable action
Registration to attend the South African Supplier Diversity Council’s 10th anniversary webinar, taking place on 28 January 2021, via an online meeting platform, is open to all business suppliers and organisations wanting to effect real business transformation in South Africa.
Founded in 2011, the South African Supplier Diversity Council (SASDC), believes that Black Suppliers Matter.
“For the past decade, we have been actively addressing racial injustice and inequality in South Africa, through supplier diversity programs that promote an inclusive approach to procurement,” says Gary Joseph, CEO of the SASDC.
The organisation, which operates as a non-profit company, serves as a conduit for corporate South Africa to reach black owned enterprises who in turn are able to offer valuable delivery of products and services.
As much as the event serves to celebrate this milestone moment for the SASDC, the webinar will focus on reflecting on the past decade and addressing some of the most persistent challenges which are still preventing rapid and sustainable business transformation in the country.
“A black supplier’s perceived readiness to be incorporated into a large organisation’s supply chain is one such example,” explains Joseph.
He goes on to say, “Many black suppliers are seen as being ‘risky’ because they are unable to prove quality, working capital, operational excellence, and capacity to deliver at large scale and low cost to partner organisations. We work with black suppliers to overcome such challenges - ensure their readiness. We then connect them with our member organisations where they are able to realise sustainable business opportunities and actively participate in the economy. We essentially help organisations do business better with black suppliers.”
The event promises to encourage a robust discussion that aims to raise awareness of many issues that affect black-owned businesses and highlight why #BlackSuppliersMatter in particular.
We will hear from panellists from both sides: black supplier businesses as well as large organisations, who would like to share perspectives on what the next decade could look like for business in South Africa and propose solutions for delivering on a more inclusive economic outcome.
The need for supplier diversity in South Africa stems from inequalities and economic marginalisation facing Blacks in South Africa, as a result of Apartheid. What is unique to South Africa, is its robust political legislation supporting Black economic advancement by way of the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) laws; creating a national business environment most relative and most conducive for the successful implementation of supplier diversity in corporate procurement practices.
However, this policy framework also creates a challenge because supplier diversity is viewed as a compliance mandate rather than a business imperative. In other words, short-term wins of compliance-driven behaviour detracts from recognising real value of a long-term investment in supplier diversity as a strategy that increases global supply chain competitiveness.
The SASDC acknowledges that investing in Black businesses makes economic sense because it:
“It would be remiss of me not to also acknowledge that COVID-19 has changed our lives, from the way we live and interact, to the way we offer our services and participate in the economy. With these changes, we believe comes opportunity to reflect on the lessons we have learned and share insights on how we can navigate new prospects. In 2020, we started thinking about the way forward and, in 2021, we want to use this platform to ignite action towards a more inclusive economy.
“This combined commitment and effort will be critically important to effect real change in the South African economy by promoting participation of black business, driving inclusive procurement in line with sustainable supply chain practices that support real transformation and economic growth in South Africa,” concludes Joseph.
We encourage all suppliers and organisations to attend this agenda setting event taking place on 28 January @14:00-16:00. To register please click on the Registration link