Today's Labour News

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sabmillerBL Premium reports that Coca-Cola Beverages SA (CCBSA) has won its urgent application relating to the payout by SABMiller of BEE benefits to its former employees.  

CCBSA, on behalf of its employees, claimed a breach of the conditions of the merger in terms of which the Coca-Cola Company bought SABMiller shares held in Coca-Cola Beverage Africa (CCBA).  The merger joined the bottling operations of Coca-Cola southern and east Africa and SABMiller and its amalgamate beverages unit that makes soft drinks.  It was subject to strict conditions.  At the time, SAB said its then employees would remain beneficiaries of its BEE scheme, Zenzele, as if they had never changed employers to Coca-Cola.  This was made an order of the court by the Competition Tribunal that approved the merger conditions.  With the SAB-Zenzele scheme coming to completion, SABMiller has said its last March top-up benefits would not be paid to former employees, who are now at Coca-Cola.  SAB and AB-InBev do not interpret the merger agreement to apply to the March top-up benefits.  However, CCBSA believes its workers are entitled to the top-up benefits.  In an urgent interim order, the Tribunal sided with CCBSA's interpretation of the merger agreement as it applied to the BEE scheme.  SABMiller has to set aside benefits for its former workers, but they will not be paid out until the Competition Commission makes a final recommendation on the issue.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Katharine Child at BusinessLive (paywall access only)

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