Coca Cola bottling plant opperated by Amalgamated Beverage Industries, the soft drink devision of SAB Miller, Olifantsfontein, Johannesburg, South Africa. Photographer: Henner Frankenfeld / Bloomberg News
Coca Cola bottling plant opperated by Amalgamated Beverage Industries, the soft drink devision of SAB Miller, Olifantsfontein, Johannesburg, South Africa. Photographer: Henner Frankenfeld / Bloomberg News
Coca-Cola Beverages SA, PHOTO: Supplied
Coca-Cola Beverages SA, PHOTO: Supplied

CAPE TOWN - Coca-Cola Beverages SA (CCBSA) on Wednesday announced its commitment to divert R3.9 billion to assist black-owned and black women-owned organisations over the next three years.

“Our new approach breaks down the barriers in the way of business growth and economic development. We’re laying the groundwork for an environment in which opportunities are available equally to all businesses, and where collaboration across businesses builds a thriving and vibrant economy that benefits us all,” said CCBSA managing director Velaphi Ratshefola in a statement.

He was speaking at the company’s annual supplier development conference, which hosted more than 1,000 delegates, including 220 Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) exhibitors at Gallagher Estate in Johannesburg.

The conference targeted specific commodity categories, including fleet maintenance, manufacturing plant spares and machinery, engineering and logistics, and packaging suppliers to maximise opportunities to enter the supply chains of participating corporates.

This comes a day after the company unveiled a R400 million trust that is earmarked to help develop historically-disadvantaged emerging farmers and small suppliers, growing them to become full participants in the commercial agriculture value chain.

Ratshefola on Tuesday said the Mintirho Foundation fund would make a huge difference by providing financial, training and development support for historically disadvantaged farmers and small suppliers of inputs, particularly those who supply inputs into the CCBSA value chain.

“CCBSA's buying power, with that of like-minded corporates and retailers, will help to make a sustainable economic difference in the lives of beneficiaries. The Foundation we are launching is intended to build a new kind of business relationship between us and black emerging farmers and suppliers, in which we don’t just buy their products, but we actively support their development from the earliest stages," Ratshefola said.

- African News Agency (ANA)