The co-sponsorship announcement was made during the 2021 awards presentation event in Johannesburg on Friday.
Sanlam group executive of the brand division, Sydney Mbhele, said: “As a pan-African organisation, we continually seek opportunities to leverage synergies across the Sanlam group for the benefit of our stakeholders. The partnership on the financial-journalism awards is one such opportunity.”
“As the Sanlam group’s business in Africa has developed, it has become evident in recent years that there are further opportunities to support development of financial journalism. The co-sponsorship of the awards with Santam will assist in developing and implementing these opportunities across the continent,” says Mbhele.
The co-sponsors will work together to broaden participation across the African continent and categories of reporting on business, economics and related topics.
As an initial step, Mbhele said the independent panel of judges has agreed that significant developments in the field of environment-, sustainability- and governance- (ESG) issues warrant adding a separate ESG category to the awards.
“ESG issues are complex and contested among not only businesspeople but also among regulators, investors, analysts and politicians. Business journalists are playing an increasingly important role in assessing and reporting on ESG matters in a way that all audiences can understand.
“We believe this is an opportune moment for an awards category that recognises quality journalism around such an important matter,” says Mbhele.
Santam group chief marketing officer, Mokaedi Dilotsotlhe, says the group is delighted to take up the opportunity to support and consolidate the Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year awards.
“Santam is particularly pleased to be able to add tangible support to the role that a strong business media community plays in helping audiences engage with the full range of business issues and topics.
“It remains essential for the business community to have a robust and rigorous media landscape, that is not vulnerable to external pressures and maintains the highest quality and ethical code in its reporting.
“Our joining the Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year awards as a co-sponsor is an opportunity to deepen our commitment to supporting quality business journalism that keeps leaders, investors and the wider public properly informed about matters that affect financial wellbeing,” concludes Dilotsotlhe.