Ithuba evolved from a start-up to a stand-out company in only eight years. Recognised as the Top performing Operator in Africa, Ithuba stands as a shining example of gaming excellence. In less than a decade since being awarded the licence as the Operator of the National Lottery in June 2015, Ithuba has successfully built a brand and achieved in each sphere of its business by enhancing the public's perception of the National Lottery, improving the UX by launching the Lotto digital platform to reach a much wider audience than ever before.
Ithuba embraces the actual value of a national lottery, changing the lives of citizens through winnings and contributions. In South Africa, Ithuba raises funds for the National Lotteries Commission by generating revenue. This revenue directly impacts and affects positive changes throughout South Africa. Ithuba is cognisant of the value made towards an improved society.
Ubuntu is one of the critical values that has driven Ithuba, and true to form, its commitment to being a community-oriented company is tangible. Ithuba has brought the national lottery brand closer to its communities, solidifying its position as the operator that goes above and Ithuba has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to excellence, exceeding expectations and surpassing their assigned responsibilities.
One of Ithuba's achievements, closest to CEO Charmaine Mabuza's heart, is the award Ithuba received for the Top Empowered Company in the Socio-Economic Development category, awarded at the Top Empowerment Awards in 2022.
Mabuza has said that although each programme is of equal importance, the Ithuba Scholarship Foundation, aimed at providing tertiary education for matriculants from underprivileged backgrounds, is very close to her heart. Mabuza says: "The Ithuba Scholarship programme offers students tuition fees, mental health services through ICAS, mentorship and coaching throughout their studies."
This programme is the cornerstone of the Ithuba CSI portfolio, with the longest-standing history and impressive reach. The programme covers tuition and study materials, accommodation, meal and personal care allowances, mentorship, counselling and intervention programmes for its beneficiaries.
This initiative has transformed countless lives and has seen its beneficiaries qualify as doctors, lawyers, engineers, and IT specialists, to name a few fields. To date, the Ithuba Scholarship Foundation has seen over 300 beneficiaries graduate.
In the past, Ithuba ran a graduate programme, which was a youth employment initiative placing graduates from marketing, accounting and ICT sectors in positions across various departments in Ithuba for a 12-month internship programme. While only some of these graduates came across from the Ithuba Scholarship Foundation, every graduate benefitted immeasurably, gaining invaluable experience at Africa's leading lottery operator.
Phathiswa Myeni is a proud Graduate of the Ithuba Scholarship programme. Through the foundation, she has been able to pursue her passion by attaining a degree in finance and has secured a job in consulting. Phatiswa says that without the help of the foundation, she would have never been able to follow her dreams. She says: “Most importantly, the Foundation has taught me that through hard work and perseverance through challenging times, I can be what I want to be, as long as I have my head in the right place.”
Driven by their belief that true relief comes through empowerment, Ithuba's approach to its education-based CSI initiatives is rooted in sustainability, believing that through education, we uplift and provide long-term solutions for the communities we aim to help. South Africa can only enjoy true transformation if we can all revel in the splendour of opportunity.
Ithuba has spent the last eight years striving to achieve excellence in each business arena, and its social responsibility portfolio is undoubtedly worthy of celebration.