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Optimum Coal ESD Strategy

Optimum Coal explores options to realise greatest return on investment.

Edge Growth optimum

Optimum Coal, the largest privately owned colliery in South Africa, prides itself on being a sterling example of real broad based black economic empowerment. It has brought about true broad-based empowerment by the fact that a large proportion of the company’s shares are owned by its employees and the local communities.

Problem Statement:

In 2007, Optimum desired to become a Level 3 BEE contributor. At the time, Optimum had little in the way of a holistic, integrated broad based transformation strategy against which to build an organisation and execute on. Furthermore, many operational challenges were facing Optimum; they needed to rapidly build and scale the business whilst resources were short in supply and capacity was constrained. Any cluster 3 B-BBEE strategy would have needed to take this constraint into account.
Edge Solution:

Edge Growth determined that investing in the ESD and PP elements of the BEE scorecard was the most efficient approach to help Optimum achieve the B-BBEE points required to achieve a Level 3 BEE rating in the shortest possible timeframe.
Basic Methodology/Outcome:

Edge Growth developed a strategy that included a strategic and operational plan and designed organisational structures that would enable execution, selection, design and delivery of the ESD program. This involved developing an integrated strategy where Optimum could use their ESD spend to build capacity in their supply chain, and grow businesses that would benefit the community surrounding the mines.

Edge Growth investigated all the options available to the colliery and prioritized them according to the level of business value that could be created, the level of social impact that would be delivered as a result of the project and the level of BEE points they would accumulate as a result and the cost of accumulating these points Edge Growth then designed the way forward for Optimum; plotting the path to achieve success and gain their ESD and PP points. This outlined the roles and responsibilities for each of the stakeholders, the key buy-in and sign off required to proceed and the strategic plan that would drive the process for the next 3 years.

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