Annual Report for the year ended 30 June 2009
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Transformation report  
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Aspen recognises the importance of transformation, not only within the Group but also within the broader South African business environment. BBBEE is a framework that contributes towards rectifying the exclusions and imbalances of the past and enables South Africa’s sustainable growth into the future.


Aspen's objective is to achieve and maintain a "Level 4" contributor status in terms of the Department of Trade & Industry’s Codes of Good Practice (“DTI Codes”).

In an audit conducted by independent BBBEE accreditor, Empowerdex, in September 2009, Aspen attained a Level 4 contributor rating in terms of the DTI Codes with an overall score of 69,2% or an "A" rating. An overview of the Group’s progress towards compliance is outlined below:

  DTI Code   Progress   Verified  
September 2009  
August 2008  
  Ownership   Full ownership points were achieved due to BBBEE equity holding   22,0   23,0  
  Management control   Score has improved due to both promotion and recruitment of black managers   5,2   4,9  
  Employment equity   Score was improved due to increased employment of black candidates for appropriate positions   10,5   8,6  
  Skills development   R11,4 million spent on skills training and specific projects implemented to upgrade employees’ skills levels 8,6   3,7  
  Preferential procurement   Significant progress made in procurement from BBBEE-compliant companies   15,3   10,3  
  Enterprise development   Qualifying contribution terminated prematurely. Specific opportunities are being evaluated within the pharmaceutical industry as well as broader services   4,2   6,4  
  Socio-economic development   Aspen increased spend on CSI projects which focus on upgrading of clinics and improving access to healthcare in rural areas   3,4   1,5  
  Overall score       69,2   58,4  



The Transformation Committee was established in 2006 to assist the Board in driving Aspen’s transformation, BBBEE statutory compliance and adherence to transformation best practice. It is chaired by Group Chief Executive, Stephen Saad, and further comprises the Deputy Group Chief Executive, Gus Attridge, the Chairman of the Board, Judy Dlamini, and two independent non-executive directors.

In 2009 Aspen was ranked 28th out of 110 companies, in the Financial Mail/Empowerdex Survey of Top Empowerment Companies. This recognised the credibility of the Group’s BBBEE platform. Of the ranked companies, 63 were verified.

A formal Charter governs the Committee, setting out its responsibility for developing transformation strategy, reviewing the transformation policies, monitoring the BBBEE scorecard and providing guidance on management’s approach to pursuing BBBEE initiatives. In fulfilling its responsibilities, the Committee has upheld the principles of good corporate governance, sustainability of the Group and employment equity.

The Committee met four times during the year. Details of attendance are set out in the Corporate Governance Review.


At year-end, Aspen’s direct BBBEE shareholders owned 22,8 million shares with CEPPWAWU holding 9,2 million shares and Imithi Investments (Pty) Ltd holding 13,6 million shares. Imithi Investments (Pty) Ltd also held 17,6 million preference shares, which carry a right of conversion into Aspen ordinary shares on a one-for-one basis in June 2012. In the interim, the preference shares enjoy full voting rights on a pari passu basis with ordinary shares in Aspen.

Imithi Investments (Pty) Ltd exercised a call option it had over a further 6,1 million ordinary shares which were held by the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa. These shares were then sold and the proceeds reinvested in the Imithi Investments (Pty) Ltd funding structure. CEPPWAWU also disposed of 11,8 million shares. The net proceeds from disposal (after settling all amounts owing in respect of the purchase of these shares) of R456,1 million are held in the CEPPWAWU Development Trust, the benefits of which will accrue to union members, almost all of whom are previously disadvantaged employees. Through this process, the Group's BBBEE initiatives have reached a further stage of maturity as the proceeds realised from the shareholding are used to pursue broad-based upliftment.

Total voting rights held by BBBEE shareholders in Aspen’s South African operations at year-end, as measured under the principles of the DTI Codes, amount to 26,4%.

In accordance with the DTI guidelines, the BBBEE ownership points awarded to a company at any point in time continue to accrue to the company even after the disposal of some or all of the qualifying equity holding by BBBEE shareholders. The duration of this entitlement is matched to the period for which the qualifying shares were held by the BBBEE owner.

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