Newsletter 14 of 2019

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           Newsletter No. 14                                                    18 April 2019

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Western Cape province to lift garment-textile sector

The department of economic development and tourism in South Africa’s Western Cape province will allocate R132 million to boost the garment and textile industry, once the employment backbone there. The province, once well known for apparel and textiles, wants to rebuild the industry, said provincial minister for economic opportunities Beverley Schäfer.

South Africa imports too much apparel and textiles and produce too little, and its imports of clothing, textiles and leather goods have rocketed from just over R5 billion in 2000 to almost R60 billion now, Schäfer said.

As South African labour in the clothing and textile sector is 45 per cent cheaper than in China, it makes no sense not to manufacture locally, a South African news portal quoted the minister as saying.

The province needs to position local manufacturers to distribute goods that the Chinese market cannot, Shaun Kirby, senior project manager at the Cape Clothing and Textile Cluster, said. F2F

Foschini Group announced Best SA Employer Brand

The Foschini Group (TFG) announced that it has won presented with the “Best South African Employer Brand” award at the 14th Employer Branding Awards which took place in Sandton last week.

Hosted by the Employer Branding Institute, the award ceremony celebrated and acknowledged top organisations and individuals from various industries across South Africa.

  • Creating a talent management strategy aligned with business vision and mission;
  • Cultivating future-ready leaders within a diversified culture; and
  • Aligning employee benefits and encouraging employee engagement.

TFG delivered exceptional results when assessed against the following criteria:

Jo Blake, TFG’s Senior Manager: Talent Acquisition, accepted the award, saying: “Our unique multi-brand group structure creates career opportunities in an environment of support, collaboration and respect. TFG’s investment in a talent strategy that aligns to our corporate vision and values includes everything from attraction and retention to succession planning and employee development. This employer brand award is proof that our efforts are paying off.

Tribunal approves IDC, Celrose merger with conditions

The Tribunal has approved, with conditions, the proposed transaction whereby the Industrial Development Corporation SOC Ltd (the IDC) seeks to acquire the clothing and footwear manufacturer, Celrose (Pty) Ltd (Celrose).

The IDC is government-owned and gives financial support to businesses. It also provides finance to entrepreneurs through loans and equity. The IDC holds interests in several companies and industries such as textiles, clothing and agriculture.

Edcon Limited (Edcon) is a majority shareholder in Celrose. Celrose owns Eddels Shoes (Pty) Ltd (Eddels) and supplies clothing and footwear to the Edcon group and other retailers in South Africa and Zimbabwe.

To address merger-related employment concerns by trade unions, the Tribunal has approved the transaction subject to the following conditions:

  • Celrose shall not retrench any employees as a result of the merger for a period of five (5) years from the implementation date of the merger;
  • For the sake of clarity, retrenchments do not include (i) voluntary retrenchment and/or voluntary separation agreements; (ii) voluntary early retirement packages; (iii) unreasonable refusals to be redeployed in accordance with the provisions of the Labour Relations Act; (iv) resignations or retirements in the ordinary course of business; (v) retrenchments lawfully effected for operational requirements unrelated to the merger; (vi) terminations in the ordinary course of business, including but not limited to dismissals as a result of misconduct or poor performance; and (vii) any decision not to renew or extend a contract for a contract worker; and
  • Celrose must, during the first five-year period of the Merchandise Supply Agreement, provide reports to the Commission in relation to the Agreement.

Background
In its assessment, the Commission was of the view that the merger is unlikely to substantially prevent or lessen competition in any market. In relation to public

interest concerns, the IDC and Celrose said the merger would not result in job losses or negatively impact employment.

However, NULAW and SACTWU raised employment concerns relating to Edcon’s exit as a controlling shareholder of Celrose. The unions said employment at Celrose and Eddels would likely be negatively impacted, in the absence of commitments that post-merger Edcon would continue to buy the same/similar volumes of footwear and clothing from Celrose and Eddels.

The IDC and Celrose, in turn, said an amended and reinstated merchandise supply agreement will ensure that Edcon continues to procure products from Celrose and Eddels post-merger. The IDC and Celrose also undertook that the merger will not result in any retrenchments.

Despite these submissions, the unions remained concerned about the transaction’s possible effects on employment. In order to address their concerns, the Tribunal has approved the merger subject to the conditions.

Did you know……..

Within the last decade, the average breast size has increased from 34B to 36C due to the rising trend of plastic surgery.

Bra manufacturer Playtex made the spacesuits for Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin when they went to the moon.

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