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Sasol Khanyisa, the petrochemical company’s new black empowerment scheme, has been approved by shareholders. Valued at R21bn, Sasol Khanyisa will replace the maturing Sasol Inzalo scheme and provide 25% permanent black-equity ownership of the group’s local businesses.

Bongani NqwababaQualifying Sasol employees, existing Sasol Inzalo shareholders and current black Sasol shareholders are eligible for Khanyisa. Eigible existing Sasol Inzalo group and public shareholders will receive bonus Sasol BEE ordinary shares (SOLBE1) that trade on the BEE segment of the JSE, at no additional cost to them. The bonus SOLBE1 and additional SOLBE1 shares will be tradeable from 2 June, 2018.

Unlike Inzalo, Khanyisa will be underpinned by Sasol’s South African assets (synthetic fuels, chemicals and gas), which are mature, cash-generative and less dependent on fluctuations in the oil price than the share price, which underpinned Inzalo. The Sasol Inzalo Foundation will be renamed, and will continue as public benefit organisation focused on promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

To date, the Sasol Inzalo Foundation has developed 118 natural science, technology and mathematics school work books, as well as awarding more than 800 bursaries and fellowships to students at 16 South African universities.

Participants in Sasol Khanyisa will receive a debt-free share grant of Sasol ordinary shares and Sasol shares listed on the empowerment segment of the JSE worth R100 000. These shares will, subject to taxation, become theirs the end of a three-year period. Participating employees will also receive a pro rata portion of dividends received by the Sasol Khanyisa trust during the three-year period.

The scheme is not without its critics, however. The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) Commission has raised issues related to the empowerment scheme, asking questions about the structure of Sasol Khanyisa’s employee share ownership programme as well as whether the Sasol Foundation was an appropriate vehicle for getting ownership credits. Inzalo shareholders also asked Sasol executives to explain how Khanyisa would be less disappointing than Inzalo at a recent meeting.

Fluctuating oil prices have meant that Sasol Inzalo shareholders were unable to realise a cash profit at the end of the 10-year lock-up period because Sasol’s share-price appreciation was inadequate to repay the loans to set up the scheme. “We believe Sasol Khanyisa will realise sustainable and long-term value for black South African shareholders,” Sasol joint CEO and president Bongani Nqwababa said in a statement.

Image credit: http://www.sasol.com/about-sasol/company-profile/leadership/bongani-nqwababa

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