22 October 2010
South Africa’s Clicks Group has announced a share ownership scheme which will see 10% of the group’s shares issued to employees. Approximately 70% of the shares will be allocated to black people, with 60% of these being black women.
The transaction is valued at around R1.2-billion, based on the group’s recent market capitalisation. Shares will be issued at market price to all permanent employees, except senior executives currently participating in the group’s long-term incentive scheme.
The scheme is subject to shareholder approval at a general meeting in January 2011.
The Clicks Group comprises store brands such as Clicks, The Body Shop, Music and United Pharmaceutical Distributors.
Retain, attract specialist skills
Clicks Group CEO David Kneale said the scheme would enable the group to retain and attract scarce and specialist skills which are critical to the sustainability of the business.
“Pharmacists, senior black managers and longer serving employees will receive higher share allocations,” Kneale said in a statement this week. “The shortage of pharmacists is one of the biggest challenges facing our business.”
He added that the scheme would enhance the group’s ability to attract pharmacists into Clicks by giving them the opportunity to share in the long-term growth and capital appreciation of the group.
“Extending share ownership to all employees will accelerate transformation and build on the progress we have made across the other areas of black economic empowerment, particularly employment equity, skills development, preferential procurement and socio-economic development,” Kneale said.
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