24 Nov 2023 Author:

Entrepreneurship is a key proof point of inclusivity. We meet entrepreneurs where they are today and work with them to get to where they want to be tomorrow Innovation and entrepreneurship part of the DNA at the South African Breweries (SAB), and its latest venture to empower just above 4500 retailers with business skills, is one such example. Launched during entrepreneurship month, the Retail Academy aims to empower retailers with skills, knowledge and tools to help their businesses thrive and operate as sustainable ventures.

The Academy is a digital platform where retailers will be completing business development training, including lessons in strategy, sales, operations, and finance among others. These skills are set to empower them and sustain their businesses for the long run. An additional feature of the academy is to train retailers on the importance of growing their businesses responsibly. This academy will further support retailers with material that will assist the operational areas of their businesses.

Barbara Copelovici, Director: Entrepreneurship and ESG at SAB said, “In recognition of entrepreneurship month, SAB reiterates its commitment to driving inclusive growth across our communities. We do so by focusing on upskilling women and youth entrepreneurs who are then equipped to make a meaningful contribution to the communities they operate in”

Although this academy is facilitated through the use of the BEES platform, it will be powered by SAB Sharp. This forms part of the ongoing Responsible Retailer Programme (RTP) where outlets are trained and audited in accordance with legal requirements and global principles based on responsible trading.

The pilot programme of the academy is currently being rolled out to over 4 500 retailers and this offering will be available to more retailers in 2024. To participate you need to be a licensed retailer currently trading with SAB and need to fall within the BEES regulatory standards set out for retailers.

Copelovici adds, “Through various programmes, SAB established entrepreneurship as a key priority that seeks to support social innovators, farmers, retailers and SMEs by driving growth through several empowerment interventions. The Retailer Academy is one such initiative that we are certain will make a huge difference in the lives of the entrepreneurs we partner with. In a country with an unfathomable unemployment rate, we have to do all we can to assist entrepreneurs to build successful and sustainable businesses.”

The overall goal of SAB’s entrepreneurship programmes is to support 35 000 small businesses and entrepreneurs by 2025, this includes support provided to women-owned businesses in townships and rural areas, farmers, retailers, and entrepreneurs.



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