The RepTrak Pulse survey is conducted annually by collecting over 3,000 ratings from the economically active segments of the general public in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape and the Eastern Cape.
Only companies which form part of Financial Mail’s 2011 top 20 Companies listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) are surveyed, which means that Cell C, Neotel and other smaller companies are not included in the survey. Some large South African holding companies are excluded due to low familiarity with the general public.
Local companies suffer from poor reputation
According to the RepTrak Pulse survey results, Africa’s top companies suffered a “bloodbath” in their reputations this year, with only retailer Woolworths emerging with a strong and robust reputation score.
“Our corporate business leaders see themselves as running a slick operation that produces returns, and that’s where it stops. We have a vacuum in visible leaders that are prepared to stand up for a certain vision of society despite the fact that the companies they lead are having a significant effect on vast segments of the population and the nation as a whole.”
With its score of 78.59 indicating a strong/robust reputation, Woolworths has far and above the best reputation among South Africa’s top twenty listed companies.
It scored nearly ten points more than runner-up MTN and topped all seven reputation drivers – products and services, innovation, performance, citizenship, workplace, governance, and leadership.
Last year’s leader, MTN, dropped to below 70 points from a high of 73.91 in 2011. The Reputation Institute says that MTN’s good score last year was based on the emotional connection with consumers created by its sponsorship of the World Cup.
The drop this year suggests that this impact on its reputation amongst the public is now fading.
The reputations of all big South African Banks have marginally decreased. Overall ABSA achieves third place, with Standard Bank in 4th and Nedbank in 8th.
FNB has the best reputation among the South African banks, but was not rated among the top 20 listed companies, as it is a wholly-owned subsidiary and is not listed.
“The declining reputations in the banking sector are more moderate than in the other industries and the country’s financial sector continued to perform well in comparison to its global counterparts, which tend to score poorly amongst their respective audiences,” said the Reputation Institute.
The scores of the top twenty listed companies in the 2012 Reputation Pulse were as follows:
|10||Pick n Pay||64.31|