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Barclays Africa commits to progress on the African continent through growth strategy

Barclays Africa - [https://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/BN-MD629_barcla_P_20160118082916.jpg] Barclays Africa - [https://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/BN-MD629_barcla_P_20160118082916.jpg]
  • Education and Skills – spend R1,4bn in education and skills development targeting the youth
  • Enterprise Development – enable access to affordable finance for SMEs by raising R1,3bn through corporate supply and distribution chains using innovative technology
  • Financial Inclusion – enable digital and non-digital access to underserved consumers through real banking and value-add products and services to promote wider convenient access to financial services.

Barclays Africa today reaffirmed its commitment to economic and socio-economic growth on the continent through its Shared Growth Strategy, pledging

(1) R1,4bn to improve skills development and access to quality education;
(2) to raise R1,3bn to help small and medium-sized African businesses succeed and grow;
(3) to ensure that more people have access to digital and non-digital financial services across the continent.

Speaking at a press briefing in Johannesburg, Maria Ramos, Barclays Africa Group Chief Executive says, “Shared Growth for us means having a positive impact on society and delivering shareholder value, the two are not mutually exclusive. We are applying our substantial resources to provide innovative commercial products, services and partnerships to build a more equitable and prosperous Africa for the next generation.”

When our customers and clients do well, so do we. When the communities where we live and work thrive, we do too. And when society prospers, we all do. But only if we work together – private public partnerships are the key to tackling some of society’s biggest challenges – to deliver on growth opportunities. 

“We believe a business can only be successful if it connects positively and creates value with the society in which it operates in,” added Ramos.

Shared Growth is based on creating shared value. It emphasises the connections between societal and economic progress, showing that they are mutually dependent, and when unleashed can stimulate substantial growth. Companies can, and indeed should, develop deep links between their business strategies and approach towards citizenship. Similarly in South Africa there is the Kings III which advocates for ensuring business drive an integrated approach to business growth, ensuring there is the triple bottom line.

We recognise that there is a virtuous link between society’s progress and our own success, and we therefore continually seek opportunities to be a good corporate citizen, and contribute to the societies in which we operate in a meaningful way.

As part of the Shared Growth Strategy, Barclays Africa today announced the appointment of a Shared Growth Advisory Council. “We realise that making a meaningful contribution to economies and society is about shared value and shared opinion. We are proud to partner with industry leaders, civil society and government who will play a role in ensuring our contributions are meaningful and that our impact is sustainable,” added Ramos.

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