I’m seeing a lot of companies advertising they are a “BEE company”. The press in particular describe certain companies as “BEE companies”.

Clients tell me some of their purchases are from “BEE companies”
I find this quite irritating – or else it is useless information!

I presume that if a company calls itself a BEE company, they are more than 50% black owned.
From a narrow based viewpoint the codes themselves define companies as follows:
“black enterprise” – a company that is 50,1% owned by black persons with substantial black management control.
“black empowered enterprise” one that is at least 25,1% owned by black persons with substantial black management control.
“black engendered enterprise” (black women owned enterprise) one with at least 25,1% representation by black women within the black equity and management portion.

These definitions do not help with regards to the BEE scorecard. I do not want to know that my supplier is a BEE Company – I want his BEE compliancy level. It certainly helps their scorecard if a company is 50.1% black owned, but we need more information in order to work out their true score.

My irritation stems from the fact that many companies who say they are a BEE company feel they need not give a scorecard, and simply expect me, and my clients to accept this claim. When we calculate our procurement score, we need to know the BEE level of the supplier.

On a positive note I’ve begun noticing that some companies are saying “We are a level 5 contributorcompany, which qualifies us for a BEE procurement recognition level of 80%. We hope to reach a level 4 (100% procurement recognition level) by the end of 2006.”
This is the right way to describe the BEE credentials of your company – not “we are a BEE company!”