Vodacom has positioned its enterprise development programme, the Innovator Trust, as a buyer of its black economic empowerment (BEE) shares called Yebo Yethu.
This is reflected in the 2014/15 annual report where Vodacom declares that the Innovator Trust acquired more than 540 000 YeboYethu. This, says Vodacom, has come to advance its BBBEE credentials
The group said “The Innovator Trust utilised the loan funding obtained from Vodacom to acquire YeboYethu shares from the black public. As a
result, the Group reclassified R322 million from equity to liability in terms of IFRS 2: Share-based payments.”
The Vodacom YeboYethu empowewrment scheme was established in 2008 and allowed black people to purchase Vodacom shares at a discount. These shares were listed on an over the counter platform in January last year allowing initial investors to cash out. The Innovation Trust has been a buyer. Initial investors who entered the scheme in 2008 paid in R25 per share. The shares were trading at R69.70 yesterday (16/06/2015) having touched a high of R76.50.
Vodacom said the Trust was supporting 18 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) via a two-year business training programme.
The group explained that “We established the Innovator Trust in 2014 with a loan facility of R750 million over five years at a lower than prime interest rate.
“This funding is used to equip black entrepreneurs in the ICT sector with the necessary business skills to work with the corporate sector.”
Vodacom said the Trust’s mandate is two-fold. Firstly it is positioned to “acquire YeboYethu shares and use the dividend yield to empower black-owned and black women-owned SMEs in the ICT sector.”
Secondly the Trust is positioned to “provide business training to these SMEs.”
This piece was first published in ujuh.co.za whose publishers can be reached at email@example.com