World procurement congress lists SA supply chain collaboration as finalist


WorldProcAwards.jpgSouth African corporations’ ability to collaborate with their SME business partners on supply chain innovation was in the spotlight recently at the Procurement Leader Awards of the Second World Procurement Congress.

Anglo American and Johannesburg-based Aurik Business Incubator were the only SA organisations named as finalists in the categories ‘External Collaboration Award’, ‘CSR Award’ and ‘Innovation Award’.

Anglo American’s Entrepreneur Internship Programme (EIP), facilitated by Aurik Business Incubator, was featured across all three categories.

The EIP satisfied the 37 senior procurement executives serving as judges that it creates real value for a South African mining economy in dire need of sustainable and urgent transformation.

Over 450 senior procurement professionals from 37 countries were present at the London Hilton event.

The EIP aims to transform the supply chain by encouraging innovation from SME suppliers that benefits their big business partners. By enabling SME suppliers to add value, Anglo American and Aurik Business Incubator have been able to innovate the supply chain while achieving the goal of supply chain transformation. This saw the EIP entry rising to the top of the pile at the globe’s premier procurement awards.

Pavlo_Phitidis.jpg“When it comes to procurement in emerging economies like South Africa, engaging the local environment as a source of supply is now a necessity to maintain a license to trade,” explains Pavlo Phitidis, CEO of Aurik Business Incubator.

Big business needs to broaden interaction with the supply chain in order to promote economic inclusivity. “There is now an understanding that governments in emerging economies intend to use the supply chains of big business to create small business sectors,” says Phitidis.

Anglo American and Aurik’s EIP builds on this realisation of the role the supply chain has in transforming big business and the wider economy. “Suppliers can no longer be treated as mere service providers, but must be brought into the decision-making process as full partners. The benefits to the organisation are manifold, with perhaps the primary one being the fact that suppliers are in the best position to help large corporates innovate their products,” Phitidis said.

According to Phitidis, an inclusive economy powered by supply chain innovation is the overriding objective of the EIP. “The programme innovates supply chain transformation, sources and then selects the top SME businesses in the chain, and works with them to create quality, safe and sustainable businesses that can reduce cost while improving output quality.”

The EIP offers early-stage entrepreneurs and established business owners with business development support, industry exposure, mentoring and networking opportunities. Khanyisile Kweyama, Executive Director of Anglo American, commented on the potential of the programme and how it aligns with the company’s strategy to stimulate the local economy.

“Providing great business opportunities to high potential entrepreneurs allows their companies to become large-scale and meaningful enterprises, which creates new and sustainable jobs.

“South Africa has many promising entrepreneurs, but the majority of them do not have access to the skills, industry knowledge, business networks and support they need to succeed. By developing their core competencies, and offering support and advice, the EIP provides entrepreneurs with a critical stepping stone to growing their own business creating real and sustainable value for our local economy,” concluded Kweyama.

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