Groundwater brings much needed support to KZN Community

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Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa’s Coke Ville Groundwater Project seeks to alleviate water demand in communities around South Africa

South Africa, 13 April 2021 – As KwaZulu-Natal anticipates a drop in dam levels during winter, Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) seeks to deliver millions of litres of groundwater a year to residents of Ekhusane Village in the Mzinyathi Area, eThekwini.

In the latest Coke Ville Groundwater Harvesting project, CCBSA has partnered with eThekwini Municipality to build a modern, groundwater harvesting system in the community. A borehole accessing a plentiful natural reservoir of water is connected to an electric water treatment unit and is expected to deliver a maximum capacity of 108 000 litres of water per day to community members.

“South Africa faces a long-term water shortage crisis, which will affect all citizens and industries,” says Nozicelo Ngcobo, Public Affairs, Communication and Sustainability Director at CCBSA. “Water quality issues, aging infrastructure, increasing water scarcity, climate volatility, drought, and rising water pollution all pose significant risks, particularly to poorer, remote communities.

“Despite recent rains, there remain concerns about the ongoing drought in the Eastern Cape, parts of Limpopo and the North West. In KZN, infrastructure maintenance issues have also affected both urban and rural communities,” she says.

To date, Coke Ville has already handed over four solar-powered self-sustaining community-based groundwater projects in Limpopo and Eastern Cape.

These include:

  • Bholotwa in Queenstown, Chris Hani District, Eastern Cape,
  • Dala and Daberha in Ngcobo, Chris Hani District, Eastern Cape,
  • Makhushaneng in the Capricorn District, Limpopo, and 
  • Tshikota Village, Vhembe Municipality, Limpopo.

This project will be the fifth one to be handed over and due to the security concerns established during feasibility, will not be utilising solar power. These will be powered through the municipality electricity grid.

eThekwini Mayor, Mxolisi Kaunda praised Coca-Cola for their efforts in addressing water security. He said, “With South Africa being a water scarce country, immense effort is being challenged to seeking other sources of water. One of the challenges we are facing as a Municipality is rapid urbanization and the ongoing influx of people in traditional communities. This continues to put a huge strain on our water infrastructure. However, we are happy to report that the city has already invested R2 billion to improve water provision in the Western aqueduct which will significantly improve water supply in this area.

As the leadership of eThekwini Municipality, we are proud that we have increased to 82.71% the number of households with access to basic level of water. More importantly about 80.19% of indigent households have access to free basic water. Our goal is to achieve 100% coverage by 2030, the year in which we want to have achieved the goal of becoming a caring and liveable city.

Kaunda continued, “This initiative by Coca-Cola demonstrates that if we work together as business and government, we can be able to address a number of developmental challenges facing the country. We strongly believe that your action will encourage other companies to contribute to good causes that seek to improve the lives of poor communities. As eThekwini Municipality, we will continue to partner with Coca-Cola to make clean drinking water accessible to all, particularly in the rural communities.”

Two more projects are currently under initiation in Polokwane and Butterworth, which will add to the five already in operation. Collectively this will have the potential to produce over 90 million litres of water annually by the end of 2022.

South Africa still relies heavily on surface water for its water needs, a resource that is overstretched and prone to pollution, drought and system failure. The country is expected to reach physical water scarcity by 2025, accelerating to 17% water scarcity by 2030, based on current usage.

Government’s long-term water resource plan currently underway involves moving the country to alternative sources, including reusing and recycling grey water, rainwater harvesting and groundwater. Desalination remains extremely expensive and complex, with relatively low yields.

According to the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS), only 64% of households in the country have access to a reliable water supply service. Approximately 11% of wastewater treatment and water treatment works are completely dysfunctional, while 56% of wastewater treatment works and 44% of water treatment works are in poor condition.

Of the available resources, groundwater has the best potential to support a fast-growing population. It is estimated that South Africa has the same amount of groundwater as surface water. While groundwater use has increased by an average of 0,6% per year during the past four years, only about 40% (or 3 billion cubic metres per year) of available groundwater is used.

Also, groundwater is not exposed to the elements and is cleaner due to the natural filtration effects of overlying soil and rock layers. This means it can be safely used for general purposes, as well as potable uses like cleaning, taps, toilets, showers and gardens. Resources can be developed fairly quickly and cheaply at a local level.

END

About CCBSA

Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) is a proudly South African company which began operating as a legal entity in July 2016, after the merger of six non-alcoholic ready to drink bottling operations. We employ over 7000 people at 13 manufacturing facilities across the country. As a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA) and a bottler for The Coca-Cola Company, our vision is to refresh Africa every day and make our continent a better place for all. We manufacture and distribute Coca-Cola beverages that make life’s everyday moments more enjoyable, while doing business the right way. The result is shared opportunity for our customers, our employees, our communities, and our shareholders. We conduct our business ethically, transparently and conscientiously. We espouse an inclusive business culture to reflect our African identity. We accelerate sustainable, profitable revenue growth across all categories and offer an innovative portfolio of products that respond to customer needs and consumer preferences. Profitability is important, but not at any cost. People matter. Our planet matters. We do business the right way by following our values and partnering for solutions that benefit us all.

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Rakesh Rajbally

Managing Director: South Africa

Rakesh is C-Suite leader with 26 years of experience in General Management, Sales, Marketing, Logistics and Finance within the FMCG space. He currently leads the South African business for Coca-Cola Beverages Africa. He has a strong growth mindset and has successfully led CCBSA’s Commercial business unit. He is a sought after thought leader in developing & implementing revenue growth and route to market strategies in both modern and emerging markets. Under his leadership CCBSA recently completed a R6bn/ $400m investment in an Affordability growth strategy. He has also led CCBSA’s strategic and operational Customer management and recently achieved the #1 ranking across FMCG in the Advantage survey for 2 consecutive years.

Rakesh leads the CCBSA executive team that has been instrumental in successfully leading a large organization across major transformation changes including the merger of six entities to form CCBSA, the Sugar Tax introduction, Talent diversity strategy and other major productivity initiatives. He is a trusted partner and builds trust-based relations with business partners, stakeholders, and authorities.

His purpose statement “We have 2 hands, one to help yourself, one to help others” reflects in the many young leaders he has successfully coached and mentored.

Janett Forbes

Commercial Excellence Director

Janett is a seasoned financial, logistics, and commercial executive who joins us from Vector Logistics previously a division of RCL Foods where she held position of Finance Director.

Prior to this, Janett was part of the Coca-Cola family, having occupied various senior roles of Finance Manager, Category Manager, Revenue Growth Manager and Channel Development Manager within ABI in 2002 and 2016.

Janett is a qualified Chartered Accountant (CA(SA), has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Rhodes University in Grahamstown and a higher diploma in Accounting from University of Natal in Durban.

Desilan Pillay

Logistics Director

He joined the Coke system as a Unit Manager Designate at ABI Midrand in 2008. Desilan encompasses 20 years of management experience from companies including Afrox (Linde Group), the South African Breweries (ABI soft drinks and SABMiller – now ABInbev), and Unilever.  

He has a wealth of experience and a vast skillset within South Africa and across the African continent – all at executive levels. This includes, but is not limited to, project management, engineering, production (gases), packaging (FMCG), as well as operations management, financial management, sales and distribution, procurement, and planning (demand, supply, and production). Desilan has managed portfolios across end-to-end Supply Chain (Sourcing, Demand, and Supply Planning), Warehouse Management, Production, and Distribution, including Customer Care, After-sales and reverse logistics. He was also accountable for the delivery of service excellence in order fulfilment, cost of goods sold enhancement via strategic sourcing, and the overall cash optimisation (inventory) across the business. His most recent role before re-joining the CCBSA family is as the Chief Operations Officer at Anchor Holdings, one of the largest privately-owned warehousing companies in South Africa.

Desilan is a qualified Mechanical Engineer and has completed a Management Development Programme from UCT. His areas of expertise include building high performance teams and E2E supply chain and commercial acumen.

Desilan has been happily married for the past 16 years and has a 12-year-old daughter and 18-month-old twins – a boy and a girl. In his spare time, he enjoys seeing new sights locally and abroad. He is always planning his next trip to an exciting destination together with his family.

Nozicelo Ngcobo

Public Affairs, Communications & Sustainability Director

Nozicelo started her corporate career in 1994 when she was recruited by Sasol into their Management Trainee Programme of the top 16 academic graduates in South Africa – class of 1993. In addition to Sasol, Nozicelo has since worked for listed companies such as Telkom SA, South African Breweries (SAB) as well as multi-national organisations such as Philip Morris International (PMI). In 2020, Nozicelo joined Coca Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) as Director for PACS.

Nozicelo has a demonstrable track record in successfully developing and managing corporate affairs and regulatory strategies for complex industries such as alcohol, tobacco and recently the beverages industry. Nozicelo has strong professional networks spanning more than 25 years in both public and private sectors. Her strategic insights, value creation, solutions orientation, strong business/political acumen, solid networks and ability to mobilise teams to successfully execute towards a common vision are just some of the many attributes she brings into any organisation.

Nozicelo is an advocate of human rights, animal rights and has a passion for youth/women empowerment.

Michael John Wilson

Finance Director

Michael started his working career at KPMG as a Manager and Trainee Accountant from 2002 until 2006. After completing his articles, his highest position held at KPMG was Audit Manager and Office Administration Manager. In 2006 to 2009, he worked at BASF South Africa (previously known as Engelhard South Africa), where he was appointed as Site Controller – Mobile Emissions Catalysts Division. He also served as a Team Leader for Finance when the company changed its ERP from JD Edwards to SAP. In 2009, Michael joined Coca-Cola Fortune (CCF) as Finance Manager – Business Support.

In 2015, he was assigned to the CCBA integration team as a Finance work stream member and later that year, Michael was appointed Finance Manager for Marketing, Sales and Distribution. Michael relocated to Windhoek, Namibia in January 2016 as Financial Director for Coca-Cola Beverages Namibia. In October 2017, Michael returned to Port Elizabeth as Group Financial Controller for CCBA, a position he currently holds. He serves on a number of boards and audit committees within the CCBA Group.

In 2000, Michael graduated with a B.Com (Accountancy) Degree from the University of Port Elizabeth and a year later, he completed his B. Com Honours (Accountancy) at the same university. He was admitted as a Chartered Accountant (CA) in 2005. In 2010, he completed his Executive Development Programme at the University of Stellenbosch Business School.

Moses Lubisi

Manufacturing & Technical Director

Moses has over 20 years of extensive experience spanning various industries such as Sugar, Food and Beverages, and Mineral processing, including 15 years within the Coca-Cola system, Moses brings a wealth of knowledge to this role.

His journey within CCBSA has seen him excel in positions ranging from Plant Manager, Regional Manufacturing Manager (Coastal) in CCBSA to Executive Director for Appletiser (Pty) Ltd. Before returning to CCBA within Group Office, Moses served as an Operations Director at Illovo Sugar (Pty) Ltd. His expertise lies in strategy formulation, governance and execution, with a focus on end-to-end value chain orchestration across manufacturing, warehousing, logistics and supply chain management.

Moses has held senior and executive management roles for over six years, overseeing regional and enterprise-level strategies, assets and resource allocation.

Agatha Masemola

Strategy and Performance Director

Agatha joined CCBSA in April 2020 from Absa Corporate and Investment Bank Africa, where she held various roles in the past nine years, including as Managing Principal for Strategy & Business Transformation and Chief of Staff to the Chief Executive of Barclays Africa Corporate Bank. She was a key figure in the build-out and integration of the Corporate Bank across 13 African markets.

Prior to joining Absa, Agatha was a Senior Management Consultant in Strategy and Innovation at Deloitte Consulting, South Africa. At Deloitte, Agatha worked on several executive-sponsored strategy and innovation projects across various sectors, as well as driving new business development. Prior to Deloitte, she worked in Life Sciences R&D for over ten years, both as a full-time researcher with publications in peer reviewed journals, and as a Portfolio Manager & COO for a biotechnology fund management, focusing on investment in early-stage biotech ventures and commercialisation.

Agatha holds a PhD in Medical Biochemistry from the University of Cape Town and has completed post-Doctoral research in South Africa and the USA. She obtained her BSc (Biochemistry and Physiology) and MSc (Biochemistry) from the University of the North. She completed a Management Advancement Programme at Wits Business School to help her transition from laboratory to business.

Agatha loves to travel and enjoys experiencing different cultures and sampling local cuisine.

Hannes Prinsloo

Country Sales Director

Hannes comes with a wealth of experience and strong commercial operations expertise stretching over 30 years within the Bottling system; truly an example of “home grown timber”.

In his most recent role, of General Manager Commercial, he managed the Revenue Growth, Route to Market, Category management, Channel Development and Knowledge and Insights. His previous experiences include that of General Manager Operations, District Manager and National Account Manager.

Among his career achievements, he counts being inducted as a Grand Master in 2021, which is a true testament to his passion for people, strong work ethic, and unwavering commitment to performance. The Masters are seasoned professionals in our core functions (Commercial, Logistics & Manufacturing) who have consistently delivered exceptional results in their 20-plus years of service in the organisation. CCBSA bestows its highest honour these professionals who have shown exemplary commitment, fortitude, passion, loyalty and most importantly, value-adding leadership.

In May 2023, at the annual Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA) General Management Meeting (GMM) Awards, he was honoured to receive the CEO Award, which honours exceptional leadership that sets a clear example of consistently living our values. In his leisure time, Hannes follows a wide variety of debate platforms and sports.

Mkuseli Dlikilili

Human Resources Director

Prior to Mkuseli’s appointment to CCBSA, Mkuseli was Group Executive: Human Resources at Pioneer Foods, he  worked for leading South African organisations, including Eskom, SAB, Dulux and Portnet.

Mkuseli’s extensive experience in the FMCG environment includes playing a leading role in Pioneer Foods’ successful listing on the JSE and the integration of SA Dried Fruit and Ceres Fruit Juices. Mkuseli is passionate about empowering and developing people to realise their full potential, as well as contributing positively to all the spheres of their lives, and the accentuation of human dignity. He describes himself as an authentic, resilient, reliable, courageous, humble, principled and value-based person, and a committed Human Resources professional.