The Department of Trade and Industry is hosting the annual South African Premier Business Awards, with the JSE as a partner, to celebrate enterprises that achieve success in their fields


Local businesses across all sectors contribute to the economic growth of the country through their commercial achievements. One of the events aimed at acknowledging SA business excellence and celebrating enterprises that promote job creation, good business ethics, quality and the people behind these companies is the South African Premier Business Awards.

This annual awards ceremony, which takes place on 6 December, is organised by the Department of Trade and Industry (dti), in partnership with Brand South Africa and Proudly South Africa, and sponsored by Tsogo Sun. The JSE is also an affiliate partner to the event.

According to Nyiko Nkuna, director of marketing and stakeholder relations at the dti, the awards were developed to both recognise and honour SA enterprises that invest in human and technical resources across various projects and/or activities.


Any local business that meets the various criteria per category is eligible to enter. Last year, the event received more than 160 entries from companies across different sectors.

‘These awards will not only pay tribute to businesses that have excelled in their field but they will also serve as a yardstick in helping us determine whether we are moving in the right direction in achieving our key strategic priorities,’ says Nkuna.

The priorities include speeding up growth and transformation of the economy to create employment and sustainable livelihoods; strengthening the skills and human resources base; pursuing African advancement in the business sector; encouraging SA businesses to be competitive; and supporting local companies to help the economy grow.

This year, awards will be presented across 11 categories. These include Lifetime Achievement; Manufacturers; Exporters; Enterprise Development Support; Women-Owned Businesses; Young Entrepreneur; Investor of the Year; Proudly South African Enterprise; Play Your Part; SMME; and Black Industrialist.

‘Winning companies and finalists will be chosen and invited to the awards ceremony based on criteria covering aspects such as innovation, local content, creation of job opportunities, environmental responsibility and export opportunities – with emphasis on quality, packaging and branding,’ says Nkuna.

According to Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies, the awards ceremony is also aimed at encouraging and promoting entrepreneurship, public-private partnerships and competitiveness.

‘The objective of the awards is to recognise and honour local businesses that promote the spirit of success, innovation, job creation, quality and good business ethics in South Africa. They will also showcase the best that the country has to offer in terms of businesses, products and services,’ he says.

Palesa Shipalana, Head of the JSE’s Public and International Affairs, says the country’s main stock exchange supports competition between enterprises.

‘The awards encourages competition between entrepreneurs, which enables growth and development for these companies as well as the country’s economy,’ she says.

‘This forms a pivotal part of the JSE’s strategic focus to promote growth for SMEs in the country so that they may thrive and contribute to job creation and further develop their companies on an international scale.’

The winners of each category will receive a recognition signed by the Minister of Trade and Industry and a special trophy, as well as a ‘stamp of approval for a year’, which acknowledges the company as a winner of the 4th South African Premier Business Awards.

JSE CEO Nicky Newton-King will present the JSE-funded category – Investor of the Year Award – which encourages the expansion of foreign direct investment in SA and has benefited the country through development or increased employment focused on the eight key sectors of the Industrial Policy Action Plan.

By Kerry Dimmer
Image: Gallo/Getty Images