South African Breweries, part of Anheuser-Busch InBev, cancelled R2.5 billion of investments earmarked for 2021.Due to the significant impact of bans on alcohol sales and Covid-19 trading restrictions, the company is forced to cut 70 jobs and put new investments on hold in the country.
South Africa has recently banned alcohol sales for the third time as part of efforts to free up space for Covid-19 patients in hospitals burdened with alcohol-related injuries.
About 30 percent of local breweries have been forced to shut their doors permanently and some, including Heineken, have abandoned new investments.
Heineken employs just under 1,000 full time employees in South Africa where more than 165,000 people in the industry have lost their jobs since lockdowns started at the end of March.
The company said in a statement in light of the continued market pressure and in line with a global review by its Dutch parent company, it now finds it necessary to restructure its operations to build a business fit for the future.
According to Yvonne Mosadi, The Director of Human Resource for the company:
“Unfortunately, given the ongoing challenging situation the company finds itself in, these measures are no longer adequate to manage and sustain the operating costs of the business.”
Credit: Mr Charles Ankomah Darko. ( Dip.F.M, CGIA, BA, MBA)