BT today announced it has entered into an agreement with Sekunjalo Investments, under which Sekunjalo will become a 30% shareholder in BT’s South African business.
The deal demonstrates BT’s commitment to the broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) agenda and will provide opportunities for both parties to accelerate their growth. The agreement is subject to approval by the Reserve Bank of South Africa.
BT has been present in South Africa for more than 16 years and has grown the South African business to serve an impressive list of more than 300 clients, including several locally-based multinationals.
Sekunjalo was established in May 1996 as a black-controlled economic empowerment group to benefit previously disadvantaged individuals through job creation. The company is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.
In 2006 Sekunjalo was recognised as South Africa’s Top Empowerment Company by the authoritative Financial Mail/Empowerdex Survey of Top 200 listed companies. The following year, the company was selected as one of the top 125 New Champions Global Growth Companies by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
Sekunjalo has strong roots amongst historically disadvantaged individuals and community organisations. These groups form over 80% of Sekunjalo’s shareholder base.
Brian Armstrong, BT vice president, Middle East and Africa, said: “We are delighted to be able to partner with such a high-profile empowerment group as Sekunjalo. This clearly represents another milestone in BT’s development in South Africa and opens a whole raft of new business possibilities for BT.”
Mo Kajee, CEO, Sekunjalo Investments, said: “We are extremely excited to partner with BT, one of the world’s leading providers of communications solutions and services. BT has a long track record of success not only in South Africa, but Africa as a whole, and we are excited about the new opportunities this partnership brings to both BT and Sekunjalo.”
Under the terms of the agreement and subject to the approval of the South African Reserve Bank, a Sekunjalo investment vehicle will subscribe for shares equal to 30% of the entire issued share capital of BT’s South African entity. Sekunjalo will appoint two representatives to BT’s South African board. The remaining five members will be BT appointed representatives.