The Loeries Shared Value Initiative: No-One Stands Alone

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Abey Mokgwatsane, Vodacom Managing Executive, Brand & Comms.

If you love creative work that highlights a powerful, socially uplifting message, look at the Loeries Shared Value category, sponsored in 2019 by Vodacom. It’s a showcase of brilliant campaigns that are socially useful and commercially successful.

Shared value takes corporate social responsibility much further. “Rather than being charitable,” explains Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter, and Harvard Kennedy School of Government Senior Fellow, Mark Kramer, “corporate shared value is a management strategy in which companies find business opportunities in social problems.”

Vodacom’s Managing Executive: Brand & Comms Abey Mokgwatsane says the Loeries Shared Value category is in line with Vodacom’s values and a natural sponsorship fit. “Our commitment is to bring a meaningful, sustainable economic transformation of South Africa and beyond,” he explains. “We laud all companies that are creating jobs, stimulating the economy and being innovative about the way they make money, while still tackling the social issues of our times.”

Safaricom’s “DigiFarm”, the Kenyan mobile solution for smallholder farmers – which took gold in the Loeries Shared Value category last year – is a good example of adding value to the community while helping to build the brand experience. The app enables farmers to expand and improve their business activities by providing education, access to loans, easier purchases and eliminating the middleman when they sell their crops. It simply helps farmers to do better business while empowering their lives and their community.

Perhaps a question to be posed is, if business can be socially uplifting, does that mean it should be?

Pepe Marais, CEO of Joe Public United, and #1 ranked Chief Creative Officer in the Loeries Official Rankings, offers this hypothesis: “Aspiring to be bigger than yourself isn’t just a nice ideal, it’s the driving force of successful businesses.”

Marais says: “Any entrepreneur will tell you that there is something far greater that drives her or his business. Without that drive, most would not have made it past the first year – it is simply too tough. The challenge is that this drive is so deeply unconscious that the conscious answer often may be money.”

But, in reality, Marais insists we need something greater to motivate us. “That drive is at the heart of the greater purpose of the business.” Ultimately, doing business with a purpose helps you do better business.

Considering that Joe Public United is rated the number one agency in the Loeries Official Rankings, Marais certainly knows a thing or two about operating a company on the philosophy of shared value. “We believe that the growth of our people is linked to the growth of our creative product, which impacts the growth of our clients, and which ultimately contributes to the growth of the country,” he says.

Mokgwatsane agrees: “Vodacom is in the business of connecting people for a better future. Technology gives us tremendous power, but ultimately, it’s what we do with it that counts. We remain committed to responding to the needs of millions of people that can benefit from the capacity of technology to democratise access to the life changing services of a connected future. By sponsoring the Loeries Shared Value category, we support companies and creatives who are using the power of shared value to inspire.”

                                                                                                          

The Loeries extended deadline for entries is May 31, 2019. Details at loeries.com

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