JOHANNESBURG, 8 November 2021 – Accenture (NYSE: ACN) has, for the fourth year in a row, maintained a Level 1 B-BBEE status in FY21. This follows the company’s successful completion of a rigorous annual B-BBEE verification process, based on the amended Generic B-BBEE Codes by EmpowerBEE – an accredited B-BBEE verification agency.
“It is with great pleasure that I announce that we have maintained our B-BBEE Level 1 recognition for four consecutive years. This is a significant achievement, and we are proud of the substantial value we have added to both our clients and South Africa through our B-BBEE contribution,” states Khethiwe Nkuna, Corporate Citizenship and Responsible Business Lead for Accenture in Africa.
The firm believes that all South Africans must be able to participate meaningfully in the mainstream economy. Now more than ever, the private sector must work together with the government to maximise the potential of the citizens and enterprises. “It starts from within the company – our achievement is built on the consistent efforts of all our employees and leaders who keep the B-BBEE vision alive,” states Nkuna.
“We all act on this commitment as reflected in the tireless efforts of the various teams and stakeholders such as Inclusion & Diversity, Accenture Board and Exco, Akha Trustees, Human Resources, Procurement, Enterprise Supplier Development, Finance, Payroll, and Corporate Citizenship.”
Accenture upholds its status through its broad impact empowerment approach, preferential procurement and talent hiring, but also by supporting numerous initiatives for both individuals and small businesses. Accenture equips SME business owners with executive training and mentoring, creates opportunities for qualified enterprises to grow and actively participate in the economy, and helps prepare vulnerable youth for the future of work.
“Our Enterprise Supplier Development Programme class of 2021 graduated with numerous accolades, including a Henley accredited Business Management qualification. The programme had a total of 36 candidates, including 19 business owners,” states Nkuna. “We are also proud of the number of STEM students we are supporting via the Accenture Education Trust that targets households that form part of the missing middle-income group. These bright students now have the opportunity to gain future skills through a fully-funded scholarship and ongoing mentorship to build their careers,” she adds.
“The biggest opportunity for our next B-BBEE verification for FY22 rests in our ability to continue improving on the overall ethnic representation of our staff complement. This strategy aligns with our published ethnicity goals and the work we are doing with Cohesion Collective (Coco),” Nkuna says, adding that they are looking at finding new ways of diversifying our preferential procurement spend. “Through this journey, we aim to incorporate designated groups into our supply chain, primarily youth-owned businesses, companies located in rural areas, and people with disabilities,” she states.
Accenture states that empowerment is not simply a compliance exercise but proof of responsible corporate citizenship and can act as a catalyst for change in the South African business community at large. “Building a sustainable economy is critical to South Africa’s growth and supports Accenture’s success in this country. We will continue to work hard to meet and exceed South Africa’s B-BBEE and diversity goals and build on the successes of our empowerment and skills development programmes,” concludes Nkuna.