Black business is taking an increasingly firm grip on the automotive aftermarket, and will soon account for 50% of all franchise owners, franchising analyst Bendeta Gordon said. This is in stark contrast to the vehicle and components manufacturing industry, where companies are struggling to increase black participation. "Franchising is the route to meaningful economic participation for the majority of SA citizens," Bendeta said. Automotive aftermarket operators include maintenance and service companies, parts suppliers, panelbeaters, vehicle trackers, carwashes and companies offering repair and replacement of tyres, glass and batteries. Vehicle manufacturers are at loggerheads with the government over how to increase black involvement. Individual companies are trying — in some cases, collaborating — to encourage development of black suppliers. But the pace of change is slow. To hasten the process, government has proposed that multinational motor companies hand 10% of their South Afr...

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