Dis-Chem’s sales have reportedly dropped as a result of the uproar caused by a leaked controversial moratorium. According to the document, white South Africans would be barred from appointments or promotions within the company.
Dis-Chem CEO Rui Morais confirmed that sales dropped following the publication of Saltzman’s letter and the social media storm that ensued, with many calling for the company to be boycotted.
CEO Ivan Saltzman announced the moratorium, which includes external appointments and internal promotions, in a letter to senior management dated September 19.
According to Saltzman, the ratio of white to black is important. So, when no suitable black candidate is found and a white is appointed, the company requires several blacks just to keep the status quo, let alone move forward.
“Dis-Chem is a listed group and these are harsh measures and necessary if we are to remain profitable and to avoid a potential fine of 10% of turnover, which would cripple the business,” she said.
After initially defending the memo, the company later stated that it regretted the memo’s wording and tone, adding that it had been widely distributed incorrectly.
According to Saltzman, the policy would be incorporated into management’s bonus structure in order to achieve set employment equity targets.
Solidarity, a trade union, demanded confirmation from the group that the policy itself was no longer in effect. Dis-Chem was given until Friday, October 21, to confirm this or face legal action.
Morais told Daily Investor that after the memo was leaked, they saw their growth trend reverse from 17 October to 24 October when looking at daily sales numbers.
“That trend has now reversed back to normal following the pay cycle on 25 October. It did have a short-term sales impact, and we are happy that we have clarified our position,” he said.
There are far more interesting questions to ask about #DisChem‘s memo than, “Is it racist?”
1. What are the actual percentages of black people in management positions at DisChem?
I read their BEE scorecard and graphed it. pic.twitter.com/6Tckl3GOQh
— Roger Saner (@rogersaner) October 26, 2022