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Economic empowerment of Black people remains critical, and it must be pursued aggressively and unapologetically.

Top Empowerment is South Africa's primary directory of Black-owned and operated businesses, first produced in 2000 at the request of President Cyril Ramaphosa. Top Empowerment has become one of the most well-known transformation brands, recognising the significant progress made by the commitment to growing Black business and businesspeople, and features these titans of industry on its pages.

This month, the highly anticipated 21st edition of Top Empowerment will be released. Theo Baloyi, the founder and CEO of Bathu Shoes and recipient of the 2021 Top Empowered Company: Job Creation Award, graces our cover. Bathu's purpose – to rekindle optimism and create long-term jobs – was exemplified by this award. The company today employs 300 people, and its business model assures that it is stable and scalable regardless of global economic conditions.

“I’m just grateful for the man I’ve come to be, throughout the journey and the things I’ve generally achieved. And I’m just humbled by the opportunities that I’ve gotten and how I’ve maximised them,” says Baloyi. “I am so humbled by what our business has managed to do over the last couple of years, with the people that we employ, and the impact that I’ve seen in people’s lives.”

Bonang Mohale, Chancellor of the University of the Free State, continues to inspire with his article "Developing a High Velocity Delivery Machine," and the interview with Kershini Govender, Executive Head of Transformation and Strategy at Nedbank Group, are among the must-reads in this edition. Up front we have Zodwa Ntuli, the B-BBEE Commissioner, who gives us an update on South Africa's transformation trajectory.

Reimagine Africa Together

We interview Shirley Machaba, the first woman CEO of PwC Southern Africa, after 15 years at the company. “I believe that the future is bright, therefore there are many opportunities for young people aspiring to leadership roles. We all have aspirations; however, you cannot be in a leadership role without depth – people won’t take you seriously. You need to accumulate experience in order to be confident. Don’t accept mediocre appointments – they will affect your wellbeing.”

Lifetime Achiever: Top Empowerment Awards 2021

Trevor Manuel, philanthropist, business leader, and believer in active citizenship, was named the prestigious winner of the Top Empowerment Lifetime Achiever Award this year. Trevor's faith in South Africa's future, as well as his dedication to the country and its people, is unwavering. The cynical checkbox method that masquerades as empowerment, he says, is the greatest threat to empowerment. In this episode of Top Empowerment, Trevor reflects on his own journey, accomplishments, and offers advice to South Africans.

In these pages, you'll learn about the country's Top 5 ESD companies, the wealthiest Black people in South Africa, and the Top 10 South African Companies in terms of diversity and inclusion. You'll also find a plethora of information, such as tips, recommendations, and industry overviews.

Organisations appearing on the pages of the edition are recognised as those at the cutting edge of transformation and are the vanguard of fast-tracking transformation in South Africa.

For more information on how you can be a part of SA's top empowered brands please email az.oc.ocpot@gnitekram.

Read here.



Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER

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