Massmart invests a minimum of 1% profit after tax (PAT) in Corporate Social Investment (CSI) annually. During the year ended June 2010, Massmart invested R17.45 million (1.5% PAT). This is marginally lower than the 1.6% invested last financial year, but that included once-off initiatives such as a donation of 8,000 portable lanterns to the South African Police Services. Investment allocated to feeding projects was negatively affected by administrative delays involved in finalising a container kitchen contract with the Department of Education.

During the period, we commissioned a review of the Group’s CSI by an independent consultancy, Social Innovations. Their feedback was sobering and included the opinion that CSI is spread over too many projects, Massmart lacks an identifiable development position and the Group has insufficient capacity to monitor the impact of CSI projects.

Social Innovations recommended that Massmart refine its CSI focus to improve learner capacity to learn by supplementing established government primary school nutrition programmes and increase learner capacity to access knowledge by supporting Grade 4 to 6 English literacy. To exercise greater control over project delivery, they also suggested that the Group enter into partnerships with Massmart accredited school nutrition and English literacy service providers who will be closely managed in terms of clearly defined service level agreements.

Massmart has therefore undertaken to invest at least 85% of future CSI contributions in sustainable food production, hygienic food preparation and Grade 4 to 6 English literacy at primary schools that are benefiting from existing government-funded nutrition programmes. We will start this in the 2011 calendar year and make these changes in a way that is sensitive to the expectations of the current beneficiaries of Group CSI funds. The remaining 15% of Group CSI contributions will be invested in discretionary projects.

For additional reading refer to


1.   The objective to invest 1% of PAT in CSI, of which 75% must benefi t black people, is a guideline established by the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.
2.   Government policy on education provides that learners be taught in their mother tongue until Grade 3, after which teaching instruction is in English.
3.   The plan is to provide benefi ciary schools with a support package comprising nutritional and English literacy support.
  • CSI Policy (website pdf). A six-page document describing Massmart’s CSI objective and the principles governing CSI practice in the Group.
  • Massmart’s approach to CSI is evolving (website pdf). A four-page article describing Massmart’s re-focused approach to CSI following an assessment by Social Innovations, an independent consultancy.
  • Builders Warehouse encourages sustainable food production (website pdf). A two-page case study about Builders Warehouse sponsored vegetable tunnels that enable the sustainable production of fresh vegetables.
  • Game’s Ama lunchbox promotes feeding with dignity at primary schools (website pdf). A two-page case study about Game’s sponsorship of container kitchens that offer a hygienic space to prepare food at primary schools.
  • Massmart believes in improving literacy to improve learner performance (website pdf). A two-page article describing Massmart’s approach to improving English literacy amongst Grade 4 learners to improve scholastic performance.


Graph legend

  No data available for that year



1.   Comparative data for total investment in CSI is sourced from the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.
2.   Investment in feeding projects includes spend on container kitchens, vegetable tunnels, Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) and government feeding schemes and Gauteng Foodbank contributions.
3.   Investment in icon projects includes spend on Game Stores tools-to-play early childhood development kits, Makro Excellence in Education school gift voucher awards and the Massmart bursary scheme.
4.   Investment in discretionary projects includes donations to Starfi sh Foundation,Tomorrow Trust Game & Vodacom Wheelchair Fund, Business Against Crime and others.

back to top