Local Manufacturing, for Meaningful Local Change
We are inherently South African. This is embodied in our shareholding team, of which majority (51.25%) are driven black owner-operators.
It is further reflected in our commitment to manufacture locally, as we continue to invest in our new plant, as well as our employees (of which several are otherwise-abled).
But our efforts don’t stop at our own front door.
We proactively establish and/or support several local SMME’s and embody them as part of our value chain. We care about the advancement of small, medium and micro-sized enterprises and consider ourselves a catalyst of economic growth and development in South Africa.
Not forgetting our future leaders – the youth – we extend our physical-, mental-, and financial support to the learners of Sithokozile Secondary School, located in KwaDabeka Township, west of Durban.
Ultimately we consider ourselves a people business, specialising in world-class technical products.
Education for Succession Planning
Meet Zama Khanyile, Beier Envirotec’s Head of Production Design. After awarding Zama a full bursary to study a BSc in Chemical Engineering, we carefully aligned her studies with our succession planning.
In assuming her role, following four years of job shadowing, Zama replaced more than 40 years of product design experience when her predecessor retired, instantly making her a vital member of our team.
Zama is currently working towards earning her Professional Registration as an Engineer (PREng) under the mentorship of Beier Envirotec’s Managing Director, Warren Sachs.
This approach remains firmly in place as our commitment to all beneficiaries of our R3 million study- and skills development programme.
Investing in individuals like Zama is investing in us, so that together we can empower more people.
We Turn Disabilities into Opportunities
We are passionate about people and actively transform disabilities into opportunities.
The Beier Group currently employs several black, otherwise-abled individuals, of which majority are hearing-impaired. Acknowledging that these employees have unique practical- and safety requirements in the workplace, we have invested close to R1.8 million to adapt our factory and to provide reasonable accommodation and training opportunities for them.
Our initiatives to date include:
- An emergency light system to supplement our emergency sirens
- Shop floor sensitisation and awareness sessions
- Reducing communication to writing
- Appointing sign language interpreters for meetings and training workshops
- Engaging a special-needs training provider to facilitate our in-house Accredited Learnership Programmes and amending the assessment criteria for these employees
We will continue to invest in our colleagues, whose contribution to the business remains invaluable.
Local Wool for a World-Class Product
At Beier we believe in both South African people, as well as the quality of home-grown, South African textiles. As such, we source our wool from an Eastern Cape-based SMME, which is 100% black woman owned.
In turn, this small business endeavours to source as much wool from rural farmers in the Eastern Cape as possible and then cleans it.
The Beier Group has supported this initiative with both technical advice and commercial orders since 2015, allowing us to completely replace imported wool with local wool.
This initiative has transformed the lives of hundreds of families in the area and all stakeholders have realised significant benefits, including job creation, localisation, as well as an improved supply chain.
Grooming Future Leaders
Our community development initiatives are results driven, long-term, focused and require dedicated on the ground involvement. In partnering with Sithokozile Secondary School, located in KwaDabeka Township, west of Durban, we understand the magnitude of our responsibility to the learners, parents and the community at large.
The Beier Group, school personnel and the PPR Education Trust work together to encourage academic excellence, balanced with a comprehensive life skills programme that assists learners to cope with their daily challenges, as well as enabling them to recognise future opportunities.
Our support of Sithokozile includes:
- Sponsorship of the Mathematics and Science Improvement Programme, facilitated by the PPR Education Trust
- Sponsorship of the Beier Group Chess Programme
- Payment of the salary of a permanent Senior Program Coordinator and Facilitator
- Providing computer equipment and infrastructure to run the programme
- Progress monitoring through regular interactions with the school Principal and Trust
- Hosting Life Skills- and Work Readiness Programmes
- Sponsoring bursaries to high-performing learners
- Infrastructure expansion
We Encourage Strategic Thinkers
Whilst we appreciate the existence of legislation seeking to build a transformative culture in the business environment, we strongly believe that as our company transforms, we are also contributing holistically to building future leaders – both at the Beier Group and in the communities in which we operate.
Putting our money where our mouths are and to encourage strategic thinking, we have established the Beier Group Chess Programme at Sithokozile Secondary School, located in KwaDabeka Township, west of Durban.
This programme has impressively seen six learners progress through to compete in the National Chess Championships in Gauteng.
Sewing One Wish at a Time
In line with our ethos of establishing and/or supporting black women-owned SMME’s, we are proud to support Silokotho, a black woman-owned SMME, passionate about improving the lives of the members of the Umlazi community in KZN.
Khanyisile Kunene, owner-operator of Silokotho heads up a team of energetic seamstresses, who sew spunbound polypropylene bags in which Beier Envirotec filter bags are packed.
Khanyisile believes in paying it forward and not only uses Silokotho profits to run an orphan care programme, but also to expand her business, thereby employing more women and youth, allowing them to take care of their families and to contribute to the community.
Multiple other components of our day-to-day business are also outsourced to black, (often woman-owned) SMME’s, for example the manufacturing of components and uppers for our branded safety footwear.