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Engagement platforms

Stakeholders are engaged in a variety of ways. The specific engagement platform used and the frequency of the engagement depends on the stakeholder group and the issues being addressed.

The table below provides a high-level summary of the key engagement platforms used with each stakeholder group (with further detail provided in the narrative that follows).

  Stakeholder Written communication As required(telephonic and face - to - face) On - going dialgue Monthly meetings Quarterly meetings Annual meetings  
  Shareholders X         X  
  Investment community X X X     X  
  Employees X X X        
  Contractors X X X X X    
  Unions X X   X      
  Government (local, regional and national) X X          
  Industry associations and industry bodies X X     X    
  Business partners X X   X      
  Suppliers X X          
  Customers X X          
  Communities and civil society X   X        
  Media X X          


Our shareholders have the opportunity to communicate with the board at the company’s annual general meeting or to make use of shareholder resolutions.

The group provides information to its shareholders based on the guidelines of promptness, relevance, openness and substance over form. We strive for balance by reporting both the positive and negative aspects of group performance. Presentations and meetings with investors and analysts are held to communicate group strategy and performance.

Investment community

We meet with analysts throughout the year – bi-annually after half-year and annual financial results, at an annual formal investor day, through ongoing ad-hoc meetings and at various local and international conferences. A list of our primary investors appears in the integrated report.


We value our people and recognise that successful businesses are built on loyal, motivated and fulfilled employees. There are a variety of mechanisms available for employees to communicate with and provide feedback or recommendations to the group. These include bi-annual group CEO and divisional CEO stakeholder feedback forums, shop floor briefings, direct communication with line managers, formal grievance procedures, career performance reviews, and an independently managed and anonymous ethics line. Poster campaigns, a staff intranet portal and internal staff magazines and newsletters are further communication media used by the group. Various businesses within the group also conduct employee satisfaction and climate surveys.


Contractors are chiefly used in our logistics and car rental and tourism divisions. We engage with them on a day-to-day basis during the course of ordinary business, and they are required to meet the company’s safety, health, environmental, governance and human rights standards.


A large number of employees in the group are represented by trade unions and covered by collective bargaining agreements. However, the diverse nature of our business and the industries in which we are involved means that this coverage differs greatly between divisions and even within operating businesses.

Most of the larger industry-representative unions have membership in the operating divisions as outlined in the “Employee engagement” section of this report.

Government (local, regional and national)

Imperial engages with a number of government departments and government bodies on a broad range of issues including skills development, employment equity, environmental management,health and safety, and industry-specific matters. They include the Department of Labour, Department of Water Affairs, Department of Environmental Affairs, Department of Tourism, Department of Social Development, Department of Trade and Industry; the Department of Public Works, the South African Revenue Service, the Department of Transport, Department of Education, the National Treasury, the Unemployment Insurance Fund, the Workman’s Compensation Fund, Statistics South Africa, The Companies and Intellectual Property Commission, the JSE and various SETAs. In most instances engagement is formal.

Industry associations and industry bodies

Group companies are members of a number of industry-specific bodies and general associations, through which they are engaged in dialogue on industry- and business-related issues. In many instances businesses within the group leverage these associations to inform and influence debate and public policy. The associations and memberships include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • National Business Initiative (NBI)
  • Business Against Crime
  • The Southern African Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (SAVRALA)
  • Life Offices Association (LOA)
  • South African Intermediaries Association
  • National Automobile Dealers Association (NAAMSA)
  • The Road Freight Association (RFA)
  • National Business Foundation (NBF)
  • Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI)
  • Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA)
  • South African Tourism Services Association (SATSA)
  • South African Bus Operators Association (SABOA)
  • South African Motor Body Repairers Association (SAMBRA)
  • Franchise Association of South Africa (FASA)
  • Business Unity South Africa (BUSA)
  • Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • The Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport
  • Supply Chain Council
  • South African Institute for Industrial Engineering
  • NEPAD Business Foundation
  • Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)
  • Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP)
  • MCLI (Maputo Corridor Logistics Initiative)
  • Rail Road Association of South Africa
  • South African Alternative Energy Association
  • Consumer Goods Council of South Africa
  • Ethics Institute of South Africa

Business partners

Imperial’s business partnerships include its relationship with franchisees, original equipment manufacturers and dealer principals. These relationships form a vital ingredient in the group’s success and the group engages with its partners on an on-going and regular basis through a variety of channels.


The diverse nature of our business means Imperial engages with a wide range of suppliers, whose products and services are critical to our ability to service our own customers. Management within each division is responsible for engaging with suppliers in line with the business’s needs. Service level agreements are in place with key suppliers.


Imperial’s customers span virtually every facet of society and include central, provincial and local government, large, medium and small business, various industries and individual consumers. Our approach to stakeholder engagement favours personal interaction but where this is not possible, particularly in divisions with large individual customer bases such as car rental, insurance and automotive retail, other methods such as surveys and call centres are used to determine and ensure customer satisfaction.

Communities and civil society

While Imperial’s business does not, by its nature, have a significant impact on communities, we recognise and embrace the opportunity to make a positive contribution to the lives of those living in underresourced communities, and to civil society as a whole, recognising that communities are also home to our employees and customers. Together with its empowerment partner, Ukhamba Holdings, the Imperial group invests in the upliftment of under-resourced schools in poverty-stricken communities in the greater Gauteng area. This is done through the Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust, representatives of which engage with the Department of Education, community leaders, schools, principals, learners and parents on an on-going basis. The company has also spearheaded the national I-Pledge road safety campaign, which promotes safer roads for all South Africans. Various businesses within the group invest in a range of corporate social investment initiatives, which are aligned with their business and the communities with whom they interact.


The media is an important stakeholder and has the ability to influence public and investor perceptions of our brand and the value of our business. Media is engaged throughout the year, at bi-annual results presentations, one-on-one interviews with key group officers, usually the group CEO or relevant divisional CEO. The group also meets with the media on an ad hoc basis and issues press releases through its media communications partner. The group also makes extensive use of print, outdoor, radio, television and social media platforms for advertising, marketing and brand-building campaigns.


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