Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) has crowned five black-owned component supplier companies as the winners in its Ntinga Project.
The Ntinga Project was launched on October 19, with the announcement of ten finalists. These finalists were each provided mentorship by an existing VWSA supplier, with the aim to develop new black-owned component suppliers for the VWSA supply chain.
Ntinga is an isiXhosa word which means ‘to soar’.
VWSA’s Uitenhage plant, in the Eastern Cape, produces the new Polo and Polo Vivo for local and export markets.
The five suppliers named as the winners were handed a supply contract that will come into effect once they complete an 18-month training and mentorship programme.
This programme will be run by the VWSA Learning Academy, the VWSA Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) Trust, the Automotive Supply Chain Competitiveness Initiative and other VWSA divisions to ensure that the companies receive the wide range of skills required to make them successful at the end of the mentorship journey.
In selecting the winners, each of the ten finalists was given 25 minutes to present themselves, their company and their products to a panel of expert judges.
This panel included VWSA chairperson and MD Thomas Schaefer; Department of Trade and Industry Black Industrialist Programme head Takalani Tambani; VWSA B-BBEE Trust’s Siphamandla Ndawonde; VWSA purchasing manager Ndulela Canca and VWSA Quality Manager Junior Lechaba.
The five winners are Bona Once Bona Twice; Jamsco Automotive Assemblies; KPL Die Casting; Production Logix and Thekwini Wire and Fasteners.
“The caliber of presentations today showed us that there is a lot of potential in the market. All these suppliers need is guidance, training and a helping hand,” says Schaefer.
“Volkswagen is committed to developing and supporting these five up-and-coming black-owned suppliers.
“We have the resources, skills and know-how in-house and, together with our partners, we can ensure that they will succeed.
“It’s only five, but it’s a start and we aim to continue to develop B-BBEE suppliers in the automotive sector,” notes Schaefer.