Past Events

British Chamber of Business Breakfast with Rt. Hon. Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alderman Allan Yarrow

This event provided a forum to discuss the investment environment in the UK for South African companies and the role of the City of London. The British High Commissioner to South Africa, Judith Macgregor, and the Prime Minister's Trade Envoy, the Rt. Hon. Baroness Patricia Scotland of Asthal QC and Andy Henderson, Regional Trade Director - Southern Africa UK Trade & Investment were also present.


September 2015 Members' Business Briefing with Dr Anthony Turton Sponsored by Brandhouse

Dr Anthony Turton delivered a passionate presentation on the future risks posed by South Africa's current water status and the long term effects thereof. He delved deeper into Uranium contamination, Yellow Boy and Cyanobacteria Bloom with ease of explanations for members.

By making reference to and showing figures on South Africa's total national resources of water and the full supply capacity of dam storage, Dr Turton highlighted the relevance of water shortage. He continued to state that geologically South Africa no longer has the capacity to build dams for house water as the effects of climate change and increased temperatures mean water is evaporating at a cumulative speed and alternative plans must be implemented for the contingency of future generations. Many inconvenient facts were placed before chamber members to show a holistic outlook of the situation that will be in effect for the future of South Africa.

South Africa's current water treatment system and sewage works are at a substandard rate thus posing serious water limitations for the future. Covering the negative effects of acid mine drainage, microcystin and saline level build ups, requires interventions to be made to salvage the current situation. The drought in KwaZulu Natal (KZN) and illegal sand minding, available water in the province sights a steady decline and requires effective monitoring. In Closing, Dr Turton stated the solutions to water shortage: Recycling, harvesting of sewage water, technologies and skills will be needed to assist with the contamination of this natural resource to ensure sustainability in generations to come.


Cape Town August 2015 Members' Business Briefing with Tim Harris

Tim Harris's talk on the 27th of August set to prove that The Western Cape is indeed not just a pretty place to do business, but increasingly a first choice for company headquarters, entrepreneurs and business start-ups. The Western Cape truly does have it all: low operational costs, prime locations and excellent skills set with access to students from UCT and Stellenbosch.

Statistics show that young professionals are heading to The Cape attracted by the lifestyle and the opportunities available; which makes for a dynamic place to do business.

Of course there are issues that need resolving: a reliable power supply, the need for more direct flights, a review of the new visa regulations, improvements in education and to address the weakening Rand. Tim shared a few comical Tweets trending from this week's hashtag Stronger than the Rand. Nando's mild chicken, the chances of the Nkandla fire pool actually being a fire pool and Lesotho's Navy are all #stronger than the Rand. Tim's talk was inspiring and left the audience feeling very positive about a company's ability to excel in The Western Cape.


August 2015 Members' Business Briefing Sponsored by Anglo American

This month's Members Business Briefing covered 2 speakers, Boitumelo Ngutshane from KPMG and Lucy Sutcliffe from Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs. Tumi Ngutshane gave a presentation on the revised BEE changes for compliance for domestic and foreign entities. This overview of BEE covered topics such as reviewed codes, equity equivalents, enterprise, supplier development and empowering suppliers. Tumi also made reference to the B-BBEE Management Development Programme offered by UNISA and the benefits this would offer to all South Africans.

Lucy Sutcliffe spoke on the promotion of compliance on a global scale to disrupt and dismantle organised crime. Tobacco smuggling was a major point of her talk and how this goes towards the funding of drug cartels and terrorism. Her presentation also showed the significant harm of money laundering and tax evasion and the impact of "victimless crimes" from an economic standpoint. The solutions focused on preventive and punitive tools and the Amendment of the Crime Act of 2002 along with the continuous efforts of persistent enforcement on this matter.


July 2015 Members' Business Briefing with Mmusi Maimane and Toby Chance from the DA

Topic: "The DA's Vision 2029 and its implications for business"

Chamber members were invited to a talk from Toby Chance, Shadow Minister for Small Business Development and Mmusi Maimane, Leader of the opposition party.

Mmusi Maimane addressed Chamber Members on the subject of Vision 2029 and Toby elaborated on his opinions on the nationalisation of industries. Concern centered around South Africa's entrepreneurial deficit and the similarities of challenges experienced between South Africa and Greece. A description on the plans for Vision 2029 included sustainable energy, tax incentives to businesses that employ youth and a reduction of government departments for efficiency a more streamlined approach. He highlighted the importance of education and the DA's strong need to protect South Africa's constitution. Toby Chance discussed the comparisons of South Africa to Britain during the '70s and the nationalisation of industries. He expressed his views about the political maneuvers between government and the labor relations.This was then followed by a short Q&A.


June 2015 Members' Business Briefing with Robert Brozin sponsored by Jaguar Land Rover

Topic: "Changing the way the world thinks about Chicken, changing the way the world thinks about Africa"

Robbie Brozin provided insight into the vision of Nando's Business approach, "have fun and make money while changing the way the world thinks about Chicken." This event was sponsored by Jaguar Land Rover. He further elaborated on the 28 year history of Nandos from their humble beginning in Rosettenville to becoming a well-known global brand. Robbie delivered a comprehensive demonstration of how this proudly South African brand translated into the UK Market through store designs and TV Advertisements. The focal point of his presentation was Nando's desire to change the way the world thinks about Africa through their world-wide initiative of supplying their restaurants with local art and furniture and their Malaria programmes run throughout Southern Africa.


Cape Town June 2015 Business Briefing UK-South Africa bi-lateral trade

Due to a sudden illness our scheduled speaker Tim Harris was unable to attend and was replaced by Andy Henderson, UK Trade Commissioner. Andy shared some facts and figures about the trade relationship between the UK and South Africa, and gave members some insight into the possible impact of the recent UK general election results. He was realistic in his evaluation of some of the challenges faced by businesses in this country but reaffirmed the UK government's commitment to support South Africa's economic growth, and to support UK companies seeing to enter this market. The Chamber in Cape Town continues to build momentum as evidenced by the lively buzz at this event and the presence of several new members.


Unilever opening of brand new Khanyisa factory

The British High Commissioner joined Minister Rob Davies and Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever at the opening of Unilever's new homecare factory called Waterfall in Boksburg, Johannesburg. This factory forms part of a multi-year, multi billion investment plan by Unilever SA to cater for growth. The factory will enable Unilever to better serve South African consumers with innovation and green technology. The new factory will produce popular brands like Omo, Skip, Handy Andy, Domestos, Comfort and Sunlight amongst others. This homecare factory is one of Unilever's largest investments in the world with an investment of ZAR 1.3 Billion. The factory will enable Unilever to grow its presence in the region and underscores the company's commitment to the long term future of South Africa and the continent as a whole.


Export Week 2020

David Dawson presenting to delegates at the UKTI and West Midlands Chamber Export Week and conducting a round table workshop.

David Dawson, CEO of the Chamber visited regional UK Chambers during Export Week in late May. He addressed Chambers and interested stakeholders in Surrey, London, Hull and Humber, West Midlands and Greater Manchester on the Overseas Business Network generally and South and Southern Africa in particular.


May 2015 Members' Business Briefing with David Ludlow

Topic: "UK Export Finance: Supporting UK Exporters."

This topic covered the advantages of UK Export Finance and how this compliments and provides support to the private sector. He touched on the value added services such as insurance and key products that can be offered to exporters within the UK. David illustrated these with examples of case studies from small and medium-sized enterprises that have previously benefitted from their services.



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