Mercedes-Benz Brand Ambassador starts round-the-world trip in Monaco

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Monaco/Stuttgart.  Adventurer and extreme athlete Mike Horn started his round-the-world "Pole2Pole" expedition in Monaco on 8 May 2016. The Mercedes-Benz Brand Ambassador set sail for Namibia in his boat PANGAEA. The challenge faced by Horn is to circumnavigate the world northwards from Pole to Pole by alternating between boat, skis, kayak and the Mercedes-Benz G-Class. The expedition will take him from Europe to Africa and then on to the Antarctic, Oceania, Asia, the Arctic, North America and finally back to Europe. The aim is to gain an insight into culture and nature in rarely explored regions. During his adventurous trip, the South African-born explorer will be reporting on his experiences with people in different regions of the world on his website www.mikehorn.com and at #Pole2Pole. The expedition is due to end back in Monaco in 2018.

"I consider everything I do a challenge," said Mike Horn, who is famous for his extreme adventures. "I'm glad that the expedition is finally beginning and that many new impressions and experiences lie ahead." Following weeks of intensive preparations and equipment tests in wintry Canada, Mike horn and his team are now sailing to Namibia. The next stage involves driving the G-Class through the world's oldest desert, the Namib desert, on the Namibian coast. The route then passes through the Okavango delta in Botswana, the world's largest inland delta, and on to Cape Town in South Africa, where Mike Horn was born.

Mike Horn is one of the world's most recognised pioneers of modern expedition history. He has been pushing the limits of human abilities with a number of spectacular expeditions for 25 years. Mercedes-Benz has assisted Mike Horn on his expeditions for many years, including last year's "Driven to Explore" expedition on which both partners raised awareness of environmental changes in even the most remote regions of the world. Mercedes-Benz sponsored the PANGAEA expedition between 2008 and 2012. With the guiding theme "Explore. Learn. Act." Horn initiated ecological and social projects with young people in different places around the world.

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Two trucks collide on the N12 in Alberton

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This afternoon EMER-G-MED's RV5, M08 and A10 attended to a serious collision involving two trucks on the N12 West after the Elands Interchange, in Alberton.

On arrival paramedics found that two people had been injured in the collision, with one driver being heavily entrapped within the wreckage. The fire department were called in to extricate the driver using the jaws of life.

Once extricated the patients were stabilised before being transported to a nearby hospital. Both under Advanced Life Support care.

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Truck Safety and Brake & Tyre Watch

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Grey fleet management part of best practice globally

Dr David Molapo, Head of Fleet Management at Standard Bank

Dr David Molapo, Head of Fleet Management at Standard Bank

Imagine a company director being held liable for an accident that happens with a car belonging to a staff member. The scenario is not as far-fetched as it sounds. In the United Kingdom, legislation has been introduced that requires each business to ensure that not only the vehicles belonging to the company are inspected for their safety and road-worthiness, but also any vehicle belonging to a staff member that happens to be used for business purposes.

This approach is fast becoming the norm in the developed world and best practice globally, along with the rise of the concept “grey fleet” - cars belonging to staff members but used for business purposes.

“Not surprisingly, the idea of a business having a ‘grey fleet’ is not well known in South Africa, where the art and science of managing a company's formal fleet is not yet all that well developed, more so in smaller companies that do not have a dedicated fleet manager,” says Dr David Molapo, Head of Standard Bank Fleet Management.

The suggestion of having any management obligation over the cars belonging to staff members, apart from compensating them for when they use it for work, is at best likely to draw a blank stare from most local fleet managers, and at worst protest over the thought of added responsibility.

The results of a recent research project commissioned by Standard Bank Fleet Management seem to bear this out.

The Fleet Management Excellence 2015 survey, conducted among a mix of 60 South African fleets of passenger and light commercial vehicles, found that only 7% of them had ever inspected the vehicles belonging to its grey fleet for safety. An annual inspection of such vehicles is considered best practice.

The research was drawn from a model of fleet management excellence, and measured the key indicators of a well-run fleet. Apart from annual vehicle safety inspections, the model puts forward a further three requirements for managing a company's grey fleet:

  • Keeping a register of all the vehicles owned by staff members and used for business purposes. Only 15% of the fleet managers in the survey said they kept such a register.
  • Keeping a register of the driver licenses of staff members who use their own cars for business purposes. Again, only 15% of the research participants recorded this information.
  • Insuring grey fleet vehicles for business travel. Only 13% of the surveyed fleets conformed with this requirement.

Given the lack of legal obligation on South African companies to manage their grey fleets, the issue of insuring staff-owned vehicles for business travel is likely to be the main driver of the grey fleet concept and the idea that at least some company responsibility is required beyond compensating staff members for kilometres travelled. Some insurance policies will not pay out in the case of an accident in which a private vehicle was used for business purposes.

But the research suggests that South African fleets have some way to go. Only about a third of South African fleet managers are proactive enough to keep systematic track of the risks to which the company-owned vehicles are exposed, let alone their grey fleet. It therefore seems that, for now, most local companies will only become aware of the insurance issue – and their grey fleet obligations - after an accident.

“The value of the Fleet Management Excellence research is that it provides a comprehensive model of a well-run fleet, including grey fleet management.  This research provides a benchmark to fleets of how they compare with their South African peers,” says Dr Molapo.

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Mutual & Federal donates mobile library to Phinduzame Primary School

Busisiwe Sithole Mutual & Federal Head of Responsible Business handing over the library to the Principal Mr Hlatshwayo

Busisiwe Sithole Mutual & Federal Head of Responsible Business handing over the library to the Principal Mr Hlatshwayo

As a part of its continuous investment in education and development, Mutual & Federal’s Head of Responsible Business, Busisiwe Sithole officially handed over a mobile library to principal, Joseph Hlatswayo of the Phinduzame Primary School in Reitz, Free State on Friday.

The mobile library contains 1 400 books and can stock up to 5 000 books to benefit Phinduzame Primary school’s 1 160 learners and 33 educators. The library was donated as part of Mutual & Federal’s participation in the Nelson Mandela Library Project, under the ‘Participate for Good’-programme and was showcased during Old Mutual’s joBerg2C bike race that stopped over in Reitz last month. This marks the first year that Mutual & Federal is participating in the Nelson Mandela Library Project and is the very first joBerg2C library to be wholly funded by a corporate.

Phinduzame Primary school was established in 1975, but has never had a proper library, having used a storeroom as a makeshift library to keep their collection of books.

The first library to be donated through the joBerg2C initiative was donated in 2011. Money is continually being raised through proceeds from ‘Long Walk to Freedom’ initiative, events such as Old Mutual’s Joberg2C marathon, along with other corporate social investment sponsorships. With these funds, nine libraries have been donated to underprivileged schools thus far, and the Mutual & Federal library is the tenth mobile library that was sponsored through the joBerg2C initiative.

Sithole said, “The main objective of Mutual & Federal’s Responsible Business programme is to enable positive futures. Therefore, we hope this library will go a long way in encouraging the children of Reitz to change their lives through reading and create a positive future for many generations to come. We are also proud of the contribution our staff made through the Nakelela staff volunteerism programme by voluntarily donating a huge amount of additional stationery to go to each pupil at Phinduzame.”

Five robbery suspects arrested in Welkom and stolen goods recovered

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Welkom POP Task Team’s swift reaction led to the arrest of five suspects who were found busy counting stolen money in Dagbreek, Welkom.

In the morning of the 14 May 2016 at about 04:45, the Welkom POP Task Team acted on crime intelligence information about a planned tavern burglary.

The police searched the house and found two broken safes, an alarm system and a computer which, investigation revealed were stolen during a business burglary at a cosmetic shop in Manny`s. The two motor vehicles, a white BMW X3 and a maroon Toyota Hilux that were alleged to have been used to commit the crime, the stolen items, an undisclosed amount of coins and tools used to commit burglaries were confiscated. Five suspects, aged 30 to 44 years, were apprehended.

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Performance Chemicals division of Sasol awards logistics contract to Imperial

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Imperial Logistics group company Goldfields Logistics has been awarded a three year contract for warehousing and distribution services of wax products produced by the Sasolburg operations and sold by the Performance Chemicals division of Sasol. This contract win represents the latest development in a relationship spanning more than three decades between Imperial and Sasol, reveals Goldfields managing director Dr. Wynand van der Westhuizen.

“At Goldfields, we maintain that our business is about more than logistics. It is about understanding our customers’ business and meeting their individual supply chain requirements while adding value and reducing costs,” he states. The company will provide 22 000m2 of dedicated warehousing in Alrode, Gauteng, for waxes marketed by the Wax division of Performance Chemicals. Imperial’s service also includes packing containers and dispatching these for transport to international customers.

Sasol Performance Chemicals, Wax division is a leading specialist in innovative wax technology, selling high quality wax products for a variety of industries and application areas, such as adhesives, polymers, bitumen modification, packaging, inks, paints, coatings, rubber and tyre, construction board, candles, personal care, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and other industrial applications. Providing a comprehensive range of synthetic and mineral oil based paraffin waxes and petroleum jellies, this Sasol division offer its customers tailor-made solutions unlocking real business value globally.

Part of the Imperial stable since 1994, Goldfields Logistics provides warehousing, transport and distribution solutions to meet the supply chain needs of a diverse range of clients. The company boasts an extensive national footprint, with a fleet consisting of various types of vehicles for long haul and local distribution. In operation for more than 29 years, Goldfields Logistics specialises in supply chain design and optimisation, specialist warehousing, distribution centre services and total inbound and outbound supply chain solutions.

6506 Apply to Own All-New Ford GT in a Month

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After more than 10,800 people showed interest online in buying a new Ford GT, Ford received 6,506 fully completed applications from people around the world in the one-month window to apply to purchase the new EcoBoost-powered, carbon-fibre supercar during its first application window.

The number of applicants spiked in the last six days during which 32 per cent of the total fully completed applications were completed before the window closed.

"We're excited by the amount of enthusiasm fans are showing for the new Ford GT," says Dave Pericak, director, Global Ford Performance. "This initial application window is just one of many ways fans and potential owners will have to connect with our all-new supercar even before it hits the streets."

Ford is now reviewing applications from those 6,506 potential supercar buyers and will start notifying potential owners in the next 90 days.

Hundreds of registrants submitted videos with their applications during the month-long application window, hoping to bolster their chances of purchasing one of the first 500 new Ford GTs.

Creative applicants featured children, lighting effects, racing footage, revving engines, garage tours and life stories to show why they should own the all-new Ford GT.

The all-new production supercar is expected to start arriving in customers' garages by the end of 2016.

While the initial application window is closed, Ford GT fans can continue building and sharing virtual models at www.FordGT.com.

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Black Rhino Wheels to donate a portion of every wheel sold to Save the Rhino International

savetherhinonewlogo_1800x1800Tiger Wheel & Tyre is proud to announce that wheel partner, Black Rhino Wheels, is donating R5.00 of every wheel sold to Save the Rhino International.

Black Rhino Wheels has established itself as a leading manufacturer of aftermarket alloy wheels for off-road enthusiasts, including bakkies, SUV’s and 4x4 vehicles. They focus on designing and manufacturing quality, hardened alloy wheels that offer maximum off-road performance as well as heavy-duty capabilities. It is with their namesake in mind that they have collaborated with Save the Rhino International to support endangered rhinos in Africa and Asia.

Rhinos are facing an escalating poaching crisis at the moment and unless something dramatic is done to protect them they will go extinct in the wild.  The illegal poaching of rhinos is one of the biggest threats to the survival of the rhino with some predicting that rhinos could be extinct by 2026 if the current escalation in poaching continues.

Save the Rhino International’s vision is for all five rhino species to thrive in the wild for future generations. They currently support a number of ongoing rhino conservation programmes by funding a range of activities with grants and in collaboration with numerous conservation partners. Save the Rhino currently supports field programmes in Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia and South Africa, as well as the work of the IUCN SSC African Rhino Specialist Group. Save the Rhino also supports ongoing field programmes in India and Indonesia.

Visit your nearest Tiger Wheel & Tyre to view our range of Black Rhino Wheels or view them on our website at www.twt.to.

Protect your financial well-being against the risk of retrenchment

ElderlyNews reports paint a bleak picture for South Africa’s economy in the months ahead.  It certainly seems that more and more South Africans are being faced with the prospect of retrenchment as our economy struggles and companies restructure in a bid to manage costs.  Financial protection against the risk of retrenchment has become more important than ever, and while you may think that your employer or industry is not at risk, current economic volatility paints a different picture. Recent statistics released by trade union Solidarity show that some 60 000 people were affected by large scale retrenchment processes across various industries in 2015 alone.

“These statistics are unsettling for any salaried person in a time when companies across all sectors are downsizing and cutting costs.  Retrenchment can be a devastating blow, for many different reasons. Besides the emotions of shock and depression, there is the very real stress of having to deal with the loss of income and fears about your financial future. It’s comforting to know that with good financial planning and insurance cover, you can manage the risk of retrenchment, so that if the worst happens, you’ll have a financial buffer,” says Ryan Chegwidden, Head of Product & Technical at Hollard Life.

Hollard Life offers a Retrenchment Benefit that pays out if you are involuntarily retrenched as a result of your employer downsizing or facing closure.  The Retrenchment Benefit pays out up to R150 000 as a lump sum and you can claim more than once on the same benefit.  The benefit is available to all salaried individuals.

How it works

In order to claim, you need to have been continuously employed on a permanent basis for at least two years, of which at least one of those years must be with the employer from where you have been retrenched.  The Retrenchment cover is available to Hollard customers who have an existing policy such as life, disability or critical illness in place.  It’s a tax free benefit.

Financial Planning essential even during tough times

“The retrenchment benefit is a modern day essential that provides welcome financial support during a very challenging time, allowing you to minimise your money worries and focus on getting back on your feet should you be retrenched,” adds Ryan.

Talk to your financial advisor about adding a retrenchment benefit to your insurance portfolio.  For more information visit https://www.hollard.co.za/life-policy-add-ons/retrenchment-benefit

 

Insurers critical in reviving SA economy

No Comments »Written on May 11th, 2016 by
Categories: News

AGCS Africa CEO Delphine MaidouInsurance companies operating in South Africa have a critical role to play in protecting the current and future public-private projects aimed at reviving the South African economy. This is according to Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty (AGCS) Africa CEO and President of the Insurance Institute of South Africa (IISA) Delphine Maïdou.

She said this while addressing insurance professionals on what the industry needs to do to strengthen its role in understanding plans aimed at stimulating the country’s economy, so they can underwrite the risks adequately. Maidou was a key note speaker at the inaugural launch of IISA’s iToo Premium Learning Centre at their offices in Hyde Park on May 5.

Government’s increasing focus on investment in infrastructure, energy, transport and logistics, water and sanitation, land and agriculture, and telecommunication to name a few needs the insurance sector to know and understand the risks associated with each of the projects to ensure the effective management, control and reduction of risks – wherever and whenever these occur.

“We believe that a collaborative approach – harnessing the combined inputs of all parties – offers the best response to risk challenges, and that the majority of losses can be avoided through diligent risk management and sound insurance solutions. Insurance companies operating in South Africa are well capitalized to support the economic and infrastructure development the country sorely needs but they must to be brought on board early by both government and business and be relied upon to provide trusted risk management guidance and insurance coverage,” she said.

The South African economy is going through trying times at present and the country cannot afford below par risk management and insurance on major projects. Transparency and openness in this area is part and parcel of restoring investor confidence in our economy.

A below investment grade sovereign rating must be avoided as it will affect the insurance industry significantly. The sovereign rating of South Africa affects the rating of insurance companies and this means that local insurers may not be able to place complex local or external insurance risks such as engineering projects if they have a sub investment grade.

“As it is insurers in South Africa are already feeling the effect of a downgraded sovereign rating as global businesses and financiers often insist on an A+ rating. At times they do not even consider parental guarantees for international companies operating in South Africa, which results in local entities losing to companies operating outside of the country,” she says.

The South African insurance sector needs a thriving economy in which it can continue to grow. Insurers need to work together with government and business to revitalize our economy while ensuring that projects and organizational risks are adequately protected to provide a safety net which is greatly needed at this time.