Chairman’s statement


  • Bidvest people power continued growth
  • Proudly Bidvest profile reinforced by South African restructure
  • Dinatla deal highlights strategic importance attached to empowerment
  • Training investment at record high of R253,2 million
  • Procurement with empowered suppliers tops R23,8 billion

Cyril Ramaphosa
Non-executive chairman

Our solid performance also enables Bidvest to maintain its record as a contributor to
the material wellbeing of families and communities – a critical factor in an increasingly uncertain world.


Recovery strengthened in 2011 and so did Bidvest. Our turnaround was maintained thanks to the efforts of our people, managers and business model. As a result, distributions totalling 480,0 cents a share were made to shareholders, an increase of 11,1%.

Dividends are not the only yardstick. Solid performance also enables Bidvest to maintain its record as a contributor to the material wellbeing of families and communities – a critical factor in an increasingly uncertain world. In 2011, the Group sustained 105 057 jobs.


Successful businesses are not only driven by managers and workers, but values. What you believe shapes what you do and how you do it.

You will not find Bidvest values hanging from an office wall. We display our values by living them.

Bidvest believes in fair dealing and honest effort. We believe that rewards have to be earned; that people create profits while businesses report them; that every individual warrants respect and everyone deserves a chance to grow. We empower people and teams out of principle, not out of policy considerations.

We also believe in being open about what we do. We are straightforward and not afraid to make ourselves accountable.

A core board responsibility is to ensure these values are reflected in everything we do. To this end, we have consistently strengthened board structures and reporting systems.

We have little difficulty adjusting to King III requirements, which we accept. As an entrepreneurial company, risk appreciation and management have always been core considerations. As a Group committed to long-term growth, business sustainability has always been paramount. And as straightforward people we have no difficulty applying integrated, open reporting.

African solutions

Legislation to raise and enforce high standards is necessary, but it is important to challenge the assumption that offshore jurisdictions have a monopoly when it comes to defining quality. On occasion, African solutions have to be developed for African situations. A European or American template cannot always be applied to our market.

For example, European building standards demand costly features to satisfy northern hemisphere standards of insulation and climate control. These add significantly to the cost of materials, the complexity of construction and the speed of building. Are these standards necessary locally? Surely we have to set our own priorities and deliver standards appropriate to our circumstances.

In future, our legislators and regulators should give increased attention to the appropriateness of new standards to ensure they speed up quality delivery without imposing requirements that have little local relevance.