top of page





Amended General B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice

Enterprise & Supplier Development


By: Stella Nolan

Generally, information about B-BBEE on the internet consists

of documents issued by the Government in Gazettes or by

those operating in the B-BBEE space that communicate how

to decipher interpretations. Also represented are media reports,

typically written with a focus on the lack of transformation

and Fronting Practice. Granted, some organisations choose

Fronting Practice as part of their B-BBEE Strategy, but that only

creates an illusion of transformation. However, working in the

B-BBEE space daily and interacting with businesses committed

to transformation, most invest in the process with positive

results. B-BBEE might not be a perfect solution for delivering a

transformed South Africa; however, as things stand today, it is the

only mechanism we have for driving transformation.

I have witnessed the best and worst transformation initiatives

over the past 13 years working in the B-BBEE space. The latter,

as mentioned, creates an illusion of transformation, which, more

often than not, turns Beneficiaries into victims of financial abuse.

The National Development Plan relies on small businesses to take

our economy forward. The Codes of Good Practice recognise

this as the Enterprise Development, Supplier Development and

Socio-Economic Development elements are custom-designed

to increase small businesses’ capacity, infrastructure and

opportunities. A perfect example of this is B&K Solar Pty Ltd, a

future technology renewable energy business specialising in high

quality residential, commercial and industrial solar projects. Since

its establishment in 2019, B&K Solar has successfully grown its

footprint, whereby today, it operates nationally. As a 100% ‘Black’

Woman-owned business, B&K Solar not only provides a reliable

service, but complements the B-BBEE Scorecard of its clients.

The mission and vision of B&K Solar are to provide professional

solar and electrical building solutions, including related services,

to address its clients’ energy needs in a simplified and highly

effective manner.

The back story of B&K Solar

27-year-old Zanele Ngcobo is the owner of B&K Solar, an

Exempted Micro Enterprise. She was born and raised in Adams

Mission, a village in KwaZulu Natal, with no clean water, electricity

or network coverage. However, entrepreneurship and innovation

runs through her veins, as her family earned its livelihood in the

informal sector.

With the support of her family and a determination to succeed,

Zanele obtained a degree in Property Development and an

honours degree in Quantity Surveying. She recently completed

her master’s degree in Commerce and Leadership at the

University of KwaZulu Natal. Her other credentials include being

Alumna for Future Female Business School in Green Tech under

the UK South Africa Tech Hub.

In 2020, Pembani-Remgro selected Zanele as an Enterprise

Development Beneficiary. To begin her journey as a Pembani Remgro Beneficiary, she participated in the WorkApp Induction

Training Programme facilitated by the BEE Chamber. The

programme targets youth development by communicating

the essence of a corporate environment, business ethics,

corporate governance and B-BBEE Fundamentals. Integral

to the programme was developing and structuring a business

plan, identifying a mentor, and engaging with them effectively.

“The programme shaped my way of thinking and provided me

with the ability to create strategies to tackle the challenges of

entrepreneurship,” affirms Zanele.

TFM Magazine engaged with Zanele to grasp how she moved

B&K Solar from an idea to an organisation operating as a Good

Corporate Citizen.

What challenges did you encounter

when you established B&K Solar?

2020 was a challenging year for everyone. When the Covid

restrictions hit, some of our projects were postponed. Others,

where work was scheduled to commence, were cancelled due

to the financial implications of the restrictions. However, we

somehow weathered the storm to the extent that we received

international recognition by winning the East Africa Solar Energy

Leadership Award presented by the international world CRS and

were a finalist at the Business Investment Competition.

More recently, B&K Solar received the ‘South Africa Solar Energy

Leadership Award 2021’ presented by the World CSR. Later

this year, I will be travelling to Paris to receive the ‘World Quality

Commitment Award (WQC)’, an accolade from the BID Group to

recognise quality and excellence.

As an Enterprise Development Beneficiary,

what support did you receive

from Pembani-Remgro?

The timing was perfect when I was chosen as a Pembani Remgro Enterprise Development Beneficiary. Core to the success

of B&K Solar was the funding received to buy specialised tools

that allowed the business to grow. To this day, I have a good

relationship with Pembani-Remgro. The success of B&K Solar

is a testament to the commitment they have to a transforming

South Africa

On reflection, what do you believe is core to

being a successful entrepreneur?

First and foremost, you have to want to succeed and be

prepared to do the leg work to build a good foundation for

yourself. For me, it was education, as I believe it is the most

powerful tool to become knowledgeable and confident. One

must be determined and prepared to dismantle barriers to entry

and create opportunities.

How did the opportunity of entering the

Green Economy come about, especially with

South Africa being so reliant on fossil fuels?

I have always had a passion for research, which drove me to

discover opportunities in the renewable energy sector, particularly

in the solar energy space. It is a niche sector to enter, as South

Africa’s primary focus is on fossil fuels and nuclear energy.

Globally, climate change has been identified as a challenge that

will impact every person’s life in the world. The core is lessening

greenhouse gas emissions and shrinking the carbon footprint

of countries. The result would be a worldwide investment in the

Green Economy. Thus, the renewable energy sector is set to

soar, which will, in turn, impact the pockets of South Africans.

For example, Phambili Contractors was my first client, whereby

the services of B&K Solar took them off the grid.

Can you reflect on your journey to date

from Enterprise Development Beneficiary to

being the recipient of national and

international accolades?

The success of B-BBEE is often brought into question. However,

in my case, it did what it was intended to do. It created an

opportunity, which I grasped with both hands. So far, my journey

has been surreal. B&K Solar is an emerging business that is

gaining traction. Moving forward, we are looking to develop

meaningful partnerships to bring a new dynamic to the business,

thus increasing our footprint. The sky is the limit.

In conclusion, some food for thought: Enterprise Development

targets are based on Net Profit After Tax; thus, this element is

often ignored until an organisation reveals its financial results.

The consequence for organisations opting to address Enterprise

Development with little or no strategy, is the dumping of funds

to tick the scorecard box. Unfortunately, dumping funds more

often than not leads to unethical third-party intervention,

whereby they steer the funds towards a beneficiary in return for

commission payments. Although not an illegal practice, one has

to ponder why organisations are comfortable with a percentage

of Beneficiary funds lining the pockets of a third party. Generally,

it is such actions that lead to adverse media reports. In contrast,

organisations that plan and contribute based on their quarterly

results yield outcomes like B&K Solar.

Download PDF • 1.13MB

bottom of page