NEWS & ANALYSIS

AfriBusiness becomes Sakeliga - Piet le Roux

CEO says with 12 500 members his organisation is today the largest Afrikaans business organisation ever

Announcement: AfriBusiness becomes Sakeliga

The business organisation, AfriBusiness, today announced that it will be changing its name to Sakeliga. The decision forms part of a next phase for the organisation, in which it expands it strategy from business rights watchdog to business community.

In its next phase Sakeliga will, among other things, be characterised by a network of local chambers of commerce and other affiliations, as well as initiatives for self-regulation and for limiting the exposure of its members to harmful state intervention.

Piet le Roux, CEO of Sakeliga, formerly known as AfriBusiness, says the name change heralds a new phase: “From small beginnings with senior business persons in 2011 AfriBusiness grew to become the primary business rights watchdog in South Africa. With 12 500 members it is today the largest Afrikaans business organisation ever. At the same time problems in South Africa has increased to such an extent that the state is apparently either unwilling or simply incapable to maintain business rights, free markets and a constitutional order. Thanks to the seed capital of our supporters we can now expand our strategy: AfriBusiness, the business rights watchdog, becomes Sakeliga, the independent business community.”

Le Roux continues: “Sakeliga promotes prosperity, free markets and a constitutional order in the interests of its members and in the common interest wherever its members do business. Where, in the past, we did it as business rights watchdog encouraging and lobbying for a better business environment, we shall now mobilise the capital of our members for additional objectives.”

Sakeliga’s strategy for an independent business community is three-fold:

Anticipate political risks and help members to be as state-proof as possible, in order that business persons may continue to add value despite state interference;

Lobby government for a favourable business environment, free markets and a constitutional order; and

Create an independent business environment, in which a network of businesses continues to operate and create prosperity with the aid of self-regulation and private infrastructure, regardless of the business environment of the state.

Le Roux says the name, Sakeliga, is derived from the name of the greatest business organisation the world has known, the Hanseatic League: “The Hanseatic League was a business community with the same three objectives we have and who for several centuries played a key role in the economic development of Europe. It brought prosperity and beauty not only for its members, but also for all communities wherever its members did business. It did not stand alone, but it did stand independently and was thereby able to add value regardless of the external political environment. Visit today the cities and regions of the Hanseatic League and observe its lasting effect: From churches to universities, from roads to harbours, from art to trade. It serves to inspire us.”

Le Roux expressed a special word of thanks to AfriForum: “After AfriBusiness’s founding in 2011, we concluded in 2013 a five-year agreement with AfriForum under which AfriForum, as part of the Solidarity Movement, assisted AfriBusiness with expertise and operational support in the development of a supporter-financed non-profit organisation. I wish to extend my heartfelt appreciation to AfriForum for their assistance during this period. The problems in South Africa run deep and will only be overcome if organisations in civil society support and cooperate with each other – so in the past and so in future.”

Application and transition

The change of the name to Sakeliga, as well as changes in logo and other visual elements on communication platforms take effect on 24 July 2018 at 10:00. Some electronic platforms will for a transition period still display the names AfriSake or AfriBusiness, but will be changed in the near future as well.

The name, Sakeliga, will in all languages be applied as a trade mark, with translation of the tagline “selfstandige sakegemeenskap” as applicable. For example, in an English text it would be used as “Sakeliga, an independent business community …”

Hiqh quality versions of the logo and other visual elements are available from diens@sakeliga.co.za.

Statement issued by Piet le Roux, CEO: Sakeliga, 29 July 2018