Fawu threatens to strike over SABMiller scheme | Fin24
  • Covid-19 Money Hub

    The hub will help answer your business and money questions during the coronavirus crisis.

  • The R450bn Question

    The Covid-19 crisis has delayed finding a solution for Eskom's debt, says Pravin Gordhan.

  • Public Investment Corp.

    The asset manager's new head Abel Sithole faces a long to-do list from workers and business.


Fawu threatens to strike over SABMiller scheme

Jun 24 2016 08:43

Pretoria – The Food and Allied Workers Union (Fawu) said on Thursday it will strike and may take legal action if no agreement is reached with brewer Anheuser-Busch (AB) InBev [JSE:ANB] on SABMiller's [JSE:SAB] plan to give blacks a larger role in the business.

AB InBev, the world's largest brewer, last month gained conditional approval for its R1.5trn-plus acquisition of SABMiller from the Competition Commission, but with some strings attached.

One of these is to offer the 42 000 black beneficiaries of the SAB Zenzele empowerment scheme a new deal.

"We're going to negotiate with the merging parties once more. If we don't reach an agreement we gonna exercise our right to fight and I can guarantee you that it's likely to happen because our members are agitated as we speak," Fawu general secretary Katishi Masemola told reporters.

The Competition Tribunal, AB InBev, Fawu, SABMiller and representatives of the department of economic development agreed to remove almost all of the conditions attached to the Zenzele scheme and discuss them outside of the tribunal.

"That has left us with a lot of avenues such as to strike if we think that this issue is an issue of mutual interest. So we wanted to have an opportunity not to be handcuffed by the ruling of the tribunal, that's why we took the position," said Masemola.

The tribunal began three days of hearings on Wednesday, but Fawu can still approach the courts if their demands are not heard by the merging parties.

Conditions to the tie-up include a requirement that the merged entity continue the Zenzele Scheme in its current form until its maturity in 2020, or as agreed otherwise by the parties to the scheme.

In early June, Fawu expressed deep concerns about the conditions proposed by the Competition Commission to the tribunal, saying their submission was downplayed, and threatened to take the matter to an antitrust appeal court.

In a bid to fast track the deal, AB InBev proposed enhancing the Zenzele scheme, proposing an upfront advance cash payment for Zenzele participants to be paid shortly after the deal is approved.

But Fawu wants the scheme wound up immediately, not when it matures in 2020, and replaced with a new plan that was more relevant to the enlarged company, Masemola said.

ab inbev  |  fawu  |  sabmiller  |  mergers and acquisitions  |  unions  |  beer


Company Snapshot

Voting Booth

How has Covid-19 impacted your financial position?

Previous results · Suggest a vote