Infrastructure improvement in communities
where the company operates

Tongaat Hulett has a well-established history of maintaining constructive relationships with a range of stakeholders. The process to improve Tongaat Hulett’s understanding of its stakeholders is ongoing. It includes confirming the identity of stakeholders based on their impact / significance / influence etc. on the business, and documenting the various proactive engagements that are already in place, as the business seeks to further strengthen / build on these existing relationships. The business interfaces regularly, in an open and honest manner with a range of shareholders, governments, private farmers and their representative bodies, communities, employees and people impacted by company operations or expansion activities.

Through meaningful discussion, the business is able to understand and address potential impacts and concerns about operations and create opportunities that are aligned with the interest of all parties. Through a structured and evolving approach to stakeholder engagement, and using internal knowledge and expertise on stakeholder management, the business is able to prioritise the most important issues requiring management attention and focus. The feedback that Tongaat Hulett sought from a range of stakeholders, during 2012/13, followed the release of its 2012 Integrated Annual Report, and has been integrated into this report. A broad overview of key stakeholders and the general approach to interfacing with each of them is briefly presented below.

The expectations of shareholders, investors and analysts are to ensure that sustainable and profitable long-term growth is achieved through ethical and responsible business practices. It is the company’s responsibility to clearly and openly communicate its business strategy and financial results. Communication takes place through meetings with management, telephonic conversations, internet and email. A well-entrenched investor relations team exists, with a focus on communicating with all stakeholders and ensuring adherence to corporate disclosure requirements. Annual and interim results presentations are held in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban plus roadshows are undertaken in the United Kingdom and North America, in order to articulate the company’s performance and prospects.

Private farmers of sugar cane in the various countries of operation who supply the business’s cane requirements want to ensure that, in addition to maximising the price that they receive for the supply of their product, Tongaat Hulett is able to provide the necessary support to ensure their long-term sustainability. Tongaat Hulett works with this grouping to unlock grant funding and facilitate maximum saving in key inputs like fertilizer, good quality seed cane and herbicides. In so doing it contributes to the sustainability, growth and profitability of this stakeholder. In all the countries of operation, private farmers are organised according to their logistical areas of operation, and as the business continues to increase the level and quality of its interactions, further growth and development opportunities for both Tongaat Hulett and these stakeholders are being identified.

Expectations of government authorities and regulators’ are that the business operates in accordance with all local, provincial and national laws and regulations, as well as subscribing to and demonstrating support for articulated government objectives and policies. The company works to establish and maintain constructive relationships with governments of the countries within which it operates. It seeks to identify the impacts of government policy on its growth plans, as well as identifying how the company’s strategy can support the growth strategies of these countries. This approach ensures that there is alignment of community, government and business operations of Tongaat Hulett. Ongoing engagement with government takes place at a provincial level and where necessary a national level.

Local communities are engaged in order to develop a broader understanding of their concerns and to align priorities in areas where there will be maximum impact. Particularly within the context of sugar cane developments in the rural areas of Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe, the business’s ongoing Enterprise Development and Socio-Economic Development initiatives create regular opportunities for stakeholder engagement opportunities with this constituency.

Engagement with the media takes place on a formal and informal basis, with media briefings, press releases, SENS announcements and publishing of relevant information on the Tongaat Hulett website. Shareholders are also encouraged to attend the company’s Annual General Meeting. The company publishes highlights of its annual and interim results in the key South African daily newspapers.

Employees are interested in a stable employment relationship and a good working environment that guarantees health, safety, fairness and equal opportunity. It is the company’s responsibility to ensure that ethical and responsible management procedures are in place to protect employees, support diversity and reward performance. It is therefore important to ensure regular collaboration on these topics. A variety of internal media is used, such as the intranet, internal newsletters and briefings, and the company regularly interacts with employees, striving to achieve a high level of engagement. The bi-annual results presentations are made available to staff by invitation and also through the company intranet and internet. Specifically with regard to sustainability matters, during 2012 a roadshow was conducted in all operating facilities in order to build awareness. The company will report on progress in this regard in its next report.

Expections of customers, suppliers and service providers’ are to grow their business by supplying quality products that are desired by their customers. It is the company’s responsibility to continuously improve the quality, taste and innovative features of its products at a reasonable price. Tongaat Hulett is in regular contact with its largest customers, to ensure exceptional customer service levels. It seeks to work with these stakeholders on areas of mutual concern. We plan to engage with suppliers in responsible sourcing standards through regular procurement processes.

Managers in all company operations interact with trade unions on relevant employment issues, with collective bargaining taking place on a need to have basis. The sugar and starch operations are the most labour intensive businesses and structures are in place to engage with various unions.

It is anticipated that the evolving approach to improving the company’s understanding of its key stakeholders will include Tongaat Hulett being able to communicate matters of importance to the business. This includes its Code of Business Conduct and Ethics and other items of relevance which are specific to each stakeholder. Tongaat Hulett’s approach to ethical behaviour is an important aspect to be understood and communicated, particularly within the context, of the high degree of importance that is placed on this underlying business principle by both management and the Board.

Social innovation makes reference to organisations that are developing innovative practical approaches to transform society and the environment, thereby uplifting communities.