On 25 October 2011, the top four category winners of the Sunday Times Business Times Top 100 Companies were announced at a gala dinner in Sandton. The top company for 2011 is mining holding company Assore Limited, Business Leader of the Year is Whitey Basson, CEO of Shoprite Holdings, the 2011 Lifetime Achiever Award went to Brian Joffe, CEO of Bidvest and Impala Platinum won the 2011 Corporate Social Investment Leadership Award. The full survey will be published in the Sunday Times on Sunday 29 October 2011.
Assore was awarded top honours, as it had achieved the best growth in shareholder returns over a five-year period, ending in September this year. Chris Cory, CEO of Assore said, “I think that the key to the company’s success is the focus that family control brings to the business and the Sacco family has successfully kept the business intact for the last 70 years. Being honoured as the top company in South Africa is a corporate milestone that we’ve wanted to achieve for a very long time.”
The chief executives of the 2010 Top 100 Companies voted for Basson. “To be selected by your peers as one of the most important figures in business is the ultimate accolade,” says Ray Hartley, editor of the Sunday Times. “Winners who have previously been awarded in this category include Johann Rupert, Maria Ramos, Phuthuma Nhleko and Adrian Gore, to name but a few.”
Previous winners of the Lifetime Achiever Award included Allan Gray, Anton Rupert, Bill Venter, Donald Gordon, Koos Bekker, Nelson Mandela, Nthato Motlana, Raymond Ackerman, Richard Maponya, Sam Motsuenyane and Stephen Koseff.
Marcia Klein, editor of Business Times, said, “It is a confirmation of Impala Platinum’s firm commitment to corporate social investment that this is the second year that it has won this prestigious award.
“It reflects the group’s commitment to the Makgomo Chrome project; run together with communities, the group helps renovate schools and to bring water and electricity to 1500 households in South Africa. It has proven itself as a good corporate citizen to the communities in which the company lives and works.”
A special mention was made about South Africa’s Royal Companies, which have been placed in the Top 20 company list for three consecutive years. These included Assore, Capitec Bank, Kumba Iron Ore, Howden Africa, Shoprite Holdings and Pinnacle Technology.