Meaningful transformation in SA travel sector

A study conducted by Grant Thornton and commissioned by the Association of Southern African Travel Agents (Asata) has found that the South African travel sector has made significant strides from being a white-owned and managed sector to one that has achieved meaningful B-BBEE transformation across all levels within businesses and across all business sizes.

Meaningful transformation in SA travel sector

“We are extremely encouraged by the report’s findings that indicate that travel enterprises have largely achieved excellent scores on their Tourism B-BBEE scorecards. While the positive results have exceeded our expectations, we recognise that further transformation is still required for the travel industry to be reflective of South Africa’s racial demographics. “Our study has revealed that the travel sector is dominated by EME enterprises, which is indicative of the important role the industry plays in creating and supporting small and micro businesses, many of which are black and/or female-owned,” says Otto de Vries, Asata CEO.

The B-BBEE Report highlighted:

• Irrespective of size, more than 55% of all travel enterprises with a B-BBEE certificate has achieved a B-BBEE Status at Level 1 or 2.
• On average, all travel enterprises have 40% black and 25% black female ownership.
• Large enterprises have achieved the Tourism B-BBEE scorecard target for black women across all levels of management.
• Achieving total black participation, particularly at middle and senior management levels require more focus.
• The proportionately high percentage of black and black female personnel at junior management/ travel consultant level bodes well for the manager pipeline.
• The travel industry should drive skills development for black employees – especially focused on developing the next generation of management for the industry.

The B-BBEE study forms part of a wider investigation into the state and size of South Africa’s travel sector – the results of which will be released in 2018. The industry consists of some 1,780 travel branches or outlets – including travel agencies and independent travel consultants. All enterprises in the sector were invited to participate in the research, with 100% participation from large enterprises and nearly 50% of all Qualifying Small Enterprises (QSE), as defined by the Tourism B-BBEE Codes.


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