Vodacom becomes the first South African Telco to make it to the Fortune’s 2019 Change the World List of companies


Vodacom is humbled to become the first South African Telco to make it to the Top 25 list of Fortunes  2019 “Change the World” list, which showcases the top 52 global companies that have made an important social or environmental impact through their profit-making strategy and operations.

Fortune’s Change the World list recognises innovative business strategies that positively impact the world and focuses on companies that are addressing social challenges through their core business activities. Most of the companies on that list are relatively large, with $1 billion or more in annual revenue. Vodacom is rated number 25 in the Change the World list – a clear demonstration that the telco’s commitment to provide societal value through its core business activities is yielding positive fruits.

Takalani Netshitenzhe, Chief Officer: Corporate Affairs for Vodacom Group commented:

“We are delighted to make it into Fortunes 2019 Change the World list at our first attempt. This is a phenomenal global achievement. The Change the World list recognises companies that have had a positive social impact through activities that are part of their core business strategy. This global recognition is for the good that we have been doing for society by using ICTs, our core capability, to transform the lives of ordinary people. This feat cements us as a leader and clearly demonstrates that we do not exist merely to make profits but to transform communities.”

Globally there is a growing expectation for big businesses to serve a social purpose, and to use their resources and core capabilities to make a meaningful contribution to the countries and communities in which they operate. Vodacom’s commitment is ensuring that business goals and societal benefits are as aligned as possible.

The “Change the World” list is developed with input from FSG and the Shared Value Initiative. The final list of 50 is selected and ranked by the editors of FORTUNE based on the magazine’s own reporting and analysis. Top 10 companies on Fortune’s “Change the World” list include: 1. Qualcomm; 2. Mastercard; 3. BYD; 4. TE Connectivity; 5. Walmart; 6. Santander Brasil; 7. Centene; 8. Bank of America; 9. Schneider Electric; and 10. Terracycle. View the complete Change the World list: https://fortune.com/change-the-world/2019/search/

Vodacom is being recognised by Fortune for the positive impact driven by its Stock Visibility Solution. In an effort to alleviate medical stock-outs in South Africa, the Vodacom Foundation partnered with South Africa’s Department of Health (NDoH) to pilot Stock SVS platform across South Africa’s nine provinces. SVS was first piloted in 2014 in 605 public health centres across the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal. In 2015, the pilot was extended to the provinces of Limpopo (478 health facilities) and Eastern Cape (750 health facilities).

Following a successful pilot, in 2016 the NDoH assumed ownership (operational management and financing) of the solution and rolled it out nationally in five more provinces. Since its launch in South Africa in 2014, SVS has been implemented in public health facilities, including in Zambia and Nigeria.

The easy-to-use technology solution serves as an early warning system, allowing health clinic dispensaries to report on stock levels on the shelves through a custom-built mobile application. Based on data reported from the clinics, SVS then automates reporting via SMS and email to sub-district, district and provincial management. This data allows pharmacy supply-chain management to improve the accuracy and efficiency of the distribution of stock, which in turn increases access to quality medicine.

“We also commissioned an independent Monitoring and Evaluation assessment of the solution so that we can improve on its functionality and implementation. This we did to ensure the impact of our investment.  In Vodacom we recognise that we have both a duty and the opportunity to provide societal value through our core business activities. We realise the importance of an inclusive approach, hence we are developing and rolling out our initiatives to alleviate poverty and inequality by democratising education, providing digital products and services that empower women and youth,” concluded Netshitenzhe.