Kutoane Kutoane CEO, The Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC) p8 C EO T O D A Y FEATURED WINNER
Seelan Gobalsamy CEO, Omnia Group p16 C EO T O D A Y FEATURED WINNER
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C EO T O D A Y AFRICA A W A R D S 2 0 2 1 Hello and welcome to the 2021 CEO Today Africa Awards! These awards are an annual celebration of strong and innovative leadership among the most successful business leaders operating in Africa across all key sectors and industries. Dedicated to recognising exceptional business leadership, the CEO Today United Kingdom Awards celebrates the achievements of industry-leading CEOs and entrepreneurs across Britain and Northern Ireland. As the nation slowly approaches an exit from more than a year of uncertainty, these individuals shine as examples of excellence in their respective sectors, even when faced with unprecedented challenges. At CEO Today, we are honoured to present our 2021 CEO Today Africa Awards – a commemoration of achievement in leadership and growth. Congratulations to all of our winners.
Featured Winners 8. Kutoane Kutoane The Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC), South Africa 16. Seelan Gobalsamy Omnia Group, South Africa 20. Mohamed Mansour Al-Mansour Group, Egypt 22. Sophia Bekele Eshete DotConnectAfrica Group, Kenya 24. Mohamed Hassan Bensalah Holmarcom Group, Morocco 26. Lettie Mashau Motheo Construction Group, South Africa 28. Lyle Malander Malander Group, South Africa 30. Nargis Gani FACT, South Africa 32. Sisa Ngebulana Billion Group, South Africa 34. Lilly Ajarova Uganda Tourism Board, Uganda
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www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - Kutoane Kutoane CEO of The Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC) About Mr Kutoane Kutoane ECIC’s CEO, Mr Kutoane Kutoane is a visionary leader with over 20 years of executive experience in championing the growth agenda of diverse organisations in energy, development financing, trade finance and infrastructure financing. As a CEO, he possesses exceptional agility and the ability to lead in both niche and complex organisational environments. He is a results-driven chief executive well-grounded leadership skills. About ECIC The Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC) was established in July 2001, with a mandate to fill a market gap through the provision of medium to long-term export credit and investment guarantees. The company underwrites bank loans through the provision of political and commercial risk insurance cover, on behalf of the South African Government. www.ecic.co.za
Tell us a bit about ECIC South Africa’s history? ECIC was established in 2001 under the Export Credit and Foreign Investments Insurance Act, 1957 (as amended), to provide political and commercial risk insurance to South African exporters of capital goods and related services. ECIC is a self-sustained, state-owned national export credit agency. The company is a registered Financial Service Provider, regulated by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) and Prudential Authority (FSP No: 30656). Currently exempted in terms of Financial Advisory & Intermediary Services (FAIS) Notice 78 of 2019. Acting as a catalyst for private investment, the ECIC steps in where commercial lenders are either unwilling or unable to accept long-term risks. Along with its major shareholder – the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition – the ECIC makes use of market research tools and specialised business development units to create new insurance products that support the government’s export and investment promotion objectives. The ECIC has recently developed new products including lines of credit and lease and return of plant and equipment. The revised performance bond insurance product which was launched in 2016 is another example. It also continues to be a catalyst for increased lending capacity by financial institutions by entering into agreements with other export credit agencies (ECAs). To this end, it has adopted a comprehensive plan of action aimed at actualising cooperation programmes for mutual benefit in conjunction with, among others, BRICS ECAs, Afreximbank and African Trade Insurance. In this way, it creates a framework for both re- and coinsurance. The ECIC is also able to price African risk more competitively, given its experience in underwriting African projects. The company has been involved in flagship projects such as Nacala Corridor in Malawi & Mozambique, Cenpower in Ghana, and Mozal Aluminium Smelter in Mozambique just to name a few. The ECIC addresses obstacles through facilitation and by aiding in the release of funding required for infrastructure, which is of particular importance to multinational organisations seeking a presence in Africa. The ECIC is committed to sustainable business through innovative solutions, operational and service excellence, business development and strategic partnerships. In enabling frontier markets to industrialise and diversify the economies, the ECIC is effectively contributing to a positive socio-economic impact. ECIC’s mandate further requires it to facilitate export trade and cross-border investments, and as part of a broader government policy in the context of industrial policy, trade and investment promotion. As the official Export Credit Agency of South Africa, ECIC provides insurance for export and cross-border investment transactions that would otherwise not have taken place, as a result of either exporters, lenders, investors being unable or unwilling to accept particular risks (political or commercial) associated with such export and investment transactions. To this end, the ECIC facilitates and encourages the production and export of capital goods and services out of South Africa by underwriting such export transactions and related export credit loans and investments taking place outside of the country. In doing so, ECIC lends support to the local industry to promote economic activity in the South African economy, through the export of South African capital goods and services, which in turn, contribute to, among others, job creation, national output and generation of fiscal revenues for the government. Hence, the rationale for the contribution of ECIC to local economic development is based on the assumption that without the involvement of ECIC, certain export transactions out of South Africa would not have taken place or could have been delayed or become costly and uncompetitive. To an extent, the same argument applies to the economic development in host countries unto which SA exports are sold or investments are made. The causality of ECIC impact is based on the fact that the Corporation reduces the risk faced by the local exporter through the receipt of contrapayment for the export of capital goods and services. By decreasing the export risk and, therefore, decreasing the risk of the project in general, it ultimately gives impetus to the decision that exportoriented projects will be undertaken. What are the company’s vision and mission? ECIC’s vision is to be a world-class export credit agency in facilitating South African export trade and investment globally. An Interview With Kutoane Kutoane - 10 - CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - “ The ECIC is committed to sustainable business through innovative solutions, operational and service excellence, business development and strategic partnerships.
Our mission is to provide export credit and investment insurance solutions in support of South African capital goods and services by applying best practice risk management principles. What projects are in ECIC South Africa’s pipeline for 2021 and beyond? There are currently two liquefied natural gas projects in Mozambique that have the Corporation quite excited, and we see them as playing a key role in taking Mozambique from being one of the world’s ‘least developed countries’ to one that is a middle-income country. There are also plenty of opportunities for South African companies bidding to play a role in the supply of core components or workstreams. The recent Beitbridge Border Post project focuses on the Zimbabwe side of the Border Post, which will enable significant rehabilitation of the infrastructure at this border post and efficient management of the movement of goods and people. ECIC is insuring debt facilities by South African banks and a number of investment policies for various South African investors. The Corporation has made a pivotal contribution in unlocking the South African financing and equity investment at one of the busiest border posts between South Africa and our neighbouring countries. The economic integration between South Africa and Zimbabwe cannot be overstated, and the anticipated positive impact of these developments on the people of these two countries and the region broadly is most welcome. The EDM project in Mozambique has since reached a financial close and the first disbursement has been unlocked to commence the important work to rehabilitate the electricity supply infrastructure in Maputo and the northern region of Mozambique. The major new investments taking place in northern Mozambique have necessitated the need to improve the reliability of the electricity supply to support increased levels of industrialisation and commerce. www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - “ Our mission is to provide export credit and investment insurance solutions in support of South African capital goods and services by applying best practice risk management principles.
What do you think have been your biggest achievements over the past 12 months? • Contributed R20 million to the COVID-19 Relief Fund. • Achieved 90% of strategic objectives. • Profit before tax of R434 million for 2019/20 financial year. • Asset base of R10,8 billion at 2019/20 financial year-end (31 March 2020). • Approval of the USD800 million Total LNG Project – the largest ECIC supported project ever. • Securing up to USD400 million guarantee from Afreximbank as part of the South Africa – Africa Trade and Investment Promotion Programme (SATIPP) strategic partnership with them. • Finalisation of the first-ever ECIC reinsurance agreement – USD12,5 million. • Expansion of the ECIC insurance cover to include Euro-denominated policies. • Level 1 B-BBEE score – first-time achievement by ECIC. • Financial close of Zimborders transaction at a time when significant challenges are being experienced – this will contribute to enhanced movement of goods and increased exports. • Hosting the first ever virtual ECIC CEO Engagement Session on: The role and impact of ECIC in facilitating South African export trade with a special focus on the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) opportunity; and The importance of public and private sector collaboration in advancing export trade. • Close monitoring on the impact of COVID-19 on the insurance portfolio with a limited number of projects requiring restructuring with zero incurring a claim. • Seamless integration to a remote working environment from the onset of COVID-19 lockdowns • Total sum insured of USD 1,79 billion at 31 December 2020 (USD 1,85 billion at 31 March 2020). What do you hope to accomplish in the future with ECIC South Africa? As a visionary leader, I wish to achieve impact by seizing opportunities to capitalise on a changing environment. I am keen on looking at how ECIC should reinvent itself to play a more prominent role, like the ECAs in other countries, in enabling South Africa to recover from the negative impact of the Coronavirus. More importantly, with the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) now in the implementation stage, ECIC is poised to play a pivotal role in mobilizing South African business around the opportunities for trade and crossborder investments made possible by the launch of this watershed agreement. In line with our Africa-focused mandate, throughout this year we will hold roadshows across the country to - 12 - CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - “ As a visionary leader, I wish to achieve impact by seizing opportunities to capitalise on a changing environment.
www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - ECIC Projects and Exposure The establishment of ECIC is a government initiative that has proved to be successful, as well as invaluable. Over the past 10 years, ECIC has grown considerably in terms of business activity, supporting more than 57 export-led and investment related projects across the African continent and other emerging economies. Over the period 2011 – 2020, the aggregate nominal value of supported projects is almost R40 billion (see figure 1). Figure 1: Nominal value of ECIC supported projects (2011 – 2020) In supporting South Africa’s trade policy objectives, the ECIC has been instrumental in building trade and investment relations on the African continent. By supporting projects on the continent, ECIC also ensured that South Africa’s exporters were able to diversify their export baskets and markets away from traditional to non-traditional markets. This cushioned South African exporters against declining exports to traditional markets in the European Union and the United States of America, as these regions’ economies recorded slowing economic activity. In the 2011 -2020 period, ECIC concluded most of its transactions in African markets (78%), including, inter alia, Ghana (21%), Zambia (15%), Mozambique (14%), Tanzania (9%), Zimbabwe (8%), Malawi (5%), Liberia (3%), and Sierra Leone (2%) (see figure 2). Beyond the continent, ECIC also conducted a number of transactions in other emerging markets, including Iran (17%) and Russia (1%). In terms of sectoral composition, ECIC’s portfolio exposure varies across a wide spectrum of industries. A significant share of the portfolio (projects supported) was apportioned to mining (25%) and communication (17%) projects, consistent with the investment trends in the African continent. However, recently the portfolio exposure has since diversified to other industries namely the power (25%) and infrastructure (12%) projects, thus mitigating concentration risk. “ I believe that the strength of any achievement is rooted in the depth of passion and entrenched in the capabilities of employees that make ECIC what it is. Figure 2: ECIC insured projects in Africa (2011 – 2020) % of Supported Projects 0% 1-4% 5-25% showcase our time-tested and innovative risk solutions for exporters and the financial institutions backing them, as well as the cross-border investors. We have recently agreed with Minister Ebrahim Patel, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition to expand the mandate of the ECIC and broaden the scope of our coverage to go beyond supporting only export of capital goods and services and cover more widely the risk associated with export of value-added manufactured goods on short-term insurance basis. Our starting point and priority will be those sectors identified by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) in the Sector Master Plans. What does this award mean to you and your team at ECIC South Africa? I am honoured to have won the CEO Africa Award for 2021. I believe that the strength of any achievement is rooted in the depth of passion and entrenched in the capabilities of employees that make ECIC what it is.
A $1 Billion funding facility available for the South African-Africa Trade and Investment Promotion Programme (SATIPP) In partnership with Programme (SATIPP), a $1 billion funding facility aimed at boosting South African business export capacity, help them access investment opportunities on the continent and grow the country’s trade activities with other African countries. To access SATIPP please visit - ECIC.CO.ZA economic growth can be achieved. As Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC) we are committed to supporting our South African businesses who export and invest in capital projects beyond our borders. SUCCESSFULLY GROWING OUR PORTFOLIO IN FRONTIER MARKETS If youʼre planning on exporting to or investing in capital projects beyond our borders, contact ECIC for assistance +27 12 471 3800 | email@example.com | www.ecic.co.za C M Y CM MY CY CMY K ECICSATTIP_LOCAL ADVERT_2018_2 - Edited 28.02.19.pdf 1 2019/02/28 2:44 PM ECIC is a registered Financial Service Provider, regulated by the FSCA and Prudential Authority (FSP No: 30656). Currently exempted in terms of FAIS Notice 78 of 2019
- 16 - CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - Seelan Gobalsamy CEO Omnia Group From humble beginnings in the small South African town of East London to becoming the CEO of a multinational, diversified chemicals Group, Seelan Gobalsamy’s journey has been eventful in more ways than he can count.
www. ceotodaymagaine . com
Finding passion and purpose, early on His foray into the business world began early on. No stranger to hard work, his entrepreneurial spirit, passion to be a changemaker and a strong family influence were his greatest driving forces. “My great- grandmother would give me things to sell to earn my pocket money. As a teenager, I remember spending my evenings selling sweets, samosas and vegetables, to lend my family a helping hand. I relished in the challenge of trying to figure out the price at which to sell items to ensure I made a decent profit. At university, my tiny room was piled to the ceiling with T-shirts - a venture that paid for my first car,” recalls Seelan. A chronic overachiever, Seelan studied 40 years’ worth of matric exam papers to prepare for his finals. He graduated from high school at 16, achieving many distinctions. He went on to study a BCom in Accounting and Law at Rhodes University, taking up part-time employment to pay for his studies. As luck would have it, a local company was very impressed by his performance. They tracked him down via a local newspaper and offered him a bursary. Seelan explains, the value of a good education was instilled in him, early on; “I recognised the power of education in opening doors, especially in pre-democracy South Africa. So, my focus was on excelling in my studies, earning a decent income and doing something that feeds my passion”. It is this drive and ambition that saw him achieve his Chartered Accountant qualification in his early twenties, and he went on to do an Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School. He has built an impressive career, having assumed senior leadership roles across emerging markets for almost two decades, working at numerous blue chip global companies. In 2001, he joined Old Mutual and during his almost decade-long career, served in a number of senior roles – including FD, Head of Administration, Head of Corporate Distribution and MD of the Old Mutual Corporate business. Under his leadership, Old Mutual Corporate refined its strategy, increased sales, grew market share and established itself as the industry leader. In 2010, Seelan joined another panAfrican financial services company, Liberty Holdings, as CEO of the Liberty Corporate division - a role that his cumulative experience had effectively prepared him for. With a proven track record in managing complex businesses and an ability to build strong cohesive teams, his growth continued at a rapid pace. Three years later, he was appointed CEO of South African asset manager, STANLIB where he was responsible for implementing the business’ strategy and driving growth by building new capabilities as well as leveraging skills for investment opportunities across the continent. STANLIB managed over R580 billion worth of assets across various asset classes. He has served as a Non-executive Director on several boards and boasts the title of Founder and Director on his resume, establishing JSG Capital. Seelan often cites his various entrepreneurial exposures as catalysing his personal and professional journey. His approach to life is simple, “Always do the right thing and follow your passion.” He adds, “In my opinion, success involves less effort when you enjoy what you do.” Spearheading Omnia’s turnaround strategy His expertise set him up for what was perhaps the most challenging chapter of his journey. He started at Omnia Group as a Non-executive Director in 2018 and then became Group FD early in 2019. Not one to back down from a challenge, he also took on the role of CEO soon after, at a time of immense financial turbulence. The business sought a leader who could provide direction and a clear vision to turnaround the business – someone who wasn’t afraid to make tough decisions and set ambitious targets, but also map out ways in which to achieve these. While walking into the eye of the storm can be intimidating for some, Seelan was certain about the strategy and commitment needed to shift the needle. He employed a ‘back to basics’ approach, which included focusing on reducing debt to manageable levels, capital expenditure and working capital management, cost containment and improving return on investment. His approach instilled a high performance culture - prioritised skills development, aimed to identify and attract the right talent, but also drove the emphasis on human resource efficiencies. In just over a year - and during the height of Covid-19, Omnia proved its resilience by achieving a successful turnaround and silencing critics. Omnia’s longer term turnaround strategy continues to achieve against key metrics and create broader stakeholder value. He cites Omnia’s heritage as well as its socioeconomic contributions and commitment to sustainability as other reasons that drew him to the Group. Operating in primary sectors Omnia’s success spells economic success. From addressing basic needs such as food and potable water through its technologies, inputs and expertise; to creating employment in its more than 25 geographies; to developing skills and empowering communities – Omnia’s touchpoints are endless, and its influence immeasurable. - 18 - CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - “ Omnia has an incredible history and continues to be a leader and a market pioneer. The kind of innovation and forward-thinking approach our team applies to finding solutions, enables us to scale even greater heights.
Omnia has built a solid reputation as a reliable business partner. It is internationally recognised for its research and development, manufacturing capabilities and specialised solutions (products, services, networks) as well as technologies for the agriculture, mining and chemicals application industries. Its subsidiaries include Omnia Fertilizer, BME, Protea Mining Chemicals, Protea Chemicals and Umongo Petroleum. Known for customised and knowledge based, innovative solutions, Omnia is a game- changing business with divisions that often grab headlines, especially for setting new world records. Omnia’s growing emphasis on a “Better World” translates to its focus on: • Critical issues such as securing a healthy and adequate food supply for a growing population, effecting a lower impact on the environment, and ensuring safer operations for employees, customers and the communities within which the Group operates • Increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of the farming process through Omnia Nutriology • Reducing customers’ environmental impact through BME’s product offerings such as Double Salt emulsion, which when detonated does not produce NOx emissions, and utilising Used oil - while still maintaining the highest quality of AN/CN based emulsion products • Promoting responsible use of chemicals for health, safety and a lower environmental impact with a shift towards cleaner technologies • Actively reducing its environmental footprint by recycling water, abating emissions and pursuing alternative clean energy sources • Empowering employees, customers, communities and its value chain by providing access to skills development and resources Seelan proudly shares, “Omnia has an incredible history and continues to be a leader and a market pioneer. The kind of innovation and forward-thinking approach our team applies to finding solutions, enables us to scale even greater heights.” Established more than six decades ago and based in South Africa, Omnia’s operations span across 25 countries. The business continues to grow its global footprint, bolstering operations in Australasia and Brazil, and expanding its presence in SADC, North America and Canada. Being the change you want to see It’s clear that Seelan is committed to building world class businesses and has great ambitions for Omnia, as well as the African continent. He explains that building meaningful connections with people and supporting their growth is his greatest priority. “My father taught me that business is all about people. Its people that make a difference in other people’s lives, including customers and staff. My desire remains to build an inspired, collaborative and socially conscious team at Omnia – one that makes a meaningful difference in the lives and livelihoods of all stakeholders,” adds Seelan. On the topic of inspirational leadership, he reveals how he has always been inspired by authentic leaders and aspires to be one. “Leadership is about entrenching purpose, empowering and inspiring people to work towards a common goal. It is easier to relate to leaders that are grounded, genuine, consistent and walk the talk. You need to be yourself and stay true to what you believe in,” continues Seelan. “It’s about persisting even when the odds are stacked against you. It means taking disappointment and failure in your stride, but also not letting success cloud your judgement.” Speaking on defining career moments, he recalls being overwhelmed with recognition from Omnia employees who thanked him for his decisive leadership, conviction and perseverance. He reaffirms how proud he is to lead an engaged and committed team – one that remains focused, especially under unprecedented and evolving circumstances. When asked what he would like his legacy to be, his response is, “That I strived to give people the opportunities I have received; contributed to the development of people, communities and countries; and left the world a better place.” www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca -
- 20 - Author: Mohamed Mansour, WikiCommons creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Mohamed Mansour is the Founder and Chairman of Man Capital. He took over the Mansour Group in 1976. He is the Founder and Chairman of Mansour Automotive Company, one of the world’s leading General Motors distributors, and Mantrac Group and Unatrac, distributors of Caterpillar machines. He is a former Chairman of Crédit Agricole Egypt – the country’s second-largest bank. He is the Founder and Chairman of the Lead Foundation, a non-profit organisation providing funding to small and micro enterprises for impoverished women in Egypt, which to date has granted 3.5 million loans. He has also served as the Chairman of the Egypt-U.S. Business Council and was the President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, as well as the Secretary General of the Egyptian Center for Economic Studies (ECES). He also served on the George Washington School of Business Advisory Board and the International Advisory Board of the CocaCola Company. He is currently serving on the Advisory Board for the Centre for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown University and is a member of Harvard Kennedy School Dean’s Council. From early 2006 until October 2009, he served as the Minister of Transport in Egypt, one of the largest service ministries employing more than 250,000 people. Mohamed Mansour gained an engineering degree fromNorth Carolina State University in 1968 and an MBA from Auburn University in 1971, where he taught until 1973. Company Profile The Mansour Group is a global, familyowned conglomerate with 60,000 employees, a presence in more than 100 countries and total revenues exceeding $7.5 billion in 2018. Founded over 60 years ago by Loutfy Mansour, we manage successful businesses across a number of sectors and have long-term partnerships with some of the world’s leading brands including General Motors, Peugeot, MG, Caterpillar, and McDonalds, among many others. Al-Mansour has expanded into new regions, including Ghana, Libya, Iraq, Uganda and sub-Saharan Africa, and provides refrigerated trucks to major companies including McDonald’s, Caterpillar and Kraft Foods. Al-Mansour Automotive Mansour Group entered the automotive sector in 1975, when it was appointed as the official General Motors (GM) dealer in Egypt. When it was founded, the company’s vision was to be the “leader in the marketing and distribution of transportation products”, supported by world-class customer service. Today, Al-Mansour Automotive is one of the largest GM dealers in the world, selling over 75,000 vehicles a year. In a joint venture with GM it also manufactures cars, trucks and pickups for the Egyptian and Middle Eastern markets. It also owns franchises for Opel, MG, Chevrolet, Isuzu and Peugeot. Man Capital Man Capital is the global investment and advisory arm of the Mansour Group. Founded in 2010, it is wholly owned by the Mansour family and this independence from any large financial institution helps Man Capital to evaluate, structure and manage investments dynamically and opportunistically. Man Capital looks to build long-term relationships with its employees, customers and suppliers. Operating free of the exit needs associated with private equity firms, it is a long-term partner to the businesses in which we invest. Man Capital’s entrepreneurial spirit and culture is underpinned by strong family values and a determination to build and develop world-leading enterprises. Man Capital takes strategic positions in companies across a range of sectors including logistics, real estate, oil and gas, education, telecommunications, technology and healthcare. Our Mission We are a truly global, cross-border business. We employ over 60,000 people, crossing cultures, religions, and languages. We work together for a common goal of growth and betterment. We are continually identifying new sectors and geographies to invest in. We always look to build partnerships for the longterm. We grow and develop together. We invest in our people and support their training and education. About Mohamed www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - Egypt - Mohamed Mansour Founder and Chairman of Al-Mansour Group www.mansourgroup.com “ Our vision is to be a global group; growth is in our DNA.
- 22 - “Sophia Bekele Eshete is a widely acknowledged business leader, corporate executive, and international entrepreneur.”
Sophia Bekele Eshete is a widely acknowledged business leader, corporate executive, and international entrepreneur whose wide-ranging experience spans both the public and private sectors. She is a thought leader in global policy, corporate governance, technology, development issues, and an investor and a philanthropist. Bekele is the CEO of DotConnectAfrica (DCA) Group, a pan-Africanorganization that assists companies in their digital transformation. Its highly acclaimed and pioneering womenin-tech social empowerment program has currently impacted 12 African countries. She also serves as Chair of GEDA, a Kenyabased Investment company focusing on the strategic sectors of Africa’s economy currently vested in - Technology, Financial, Media, and Realty. Early in her career as a Corporate Executive, Bekele worked for different Fortune 500 companies, notably Bank of America, Mitsubishi Bank of California, and PricewaterhouseCoopers, in Business and Technology, Systems Security, Risk Management & Enterprise systems. She has continued to draw on this background in her current professional engagements. Bekele is a strong advocate of accountability and transparency in her engagements & holds public authorities and the private sector to such high standards. As an Entrepreneur and CEO, Bekele has founded and run international start-ups and launched early-stage US companies into new markets. In coordination with local companies she sets up, her US-based tech company, CBSegroup, formerly CBS International is known for its impact of technology transfer to Africa, implementing successful large-scale network infrastructure projects for governments, including the African Union and Ethiopian Parliament, and pioneering the domain business in Ethiopia. CBS has been engaged in corporate governance, venture capital, and business modeling activities and had Clients like Intel, Fed Reserve, Genentech, and other Start-ups in Silicon Valley in the U.S. Bekele has served on various national and international senior-level policy advisory & leadership boards, including multiple United Nations bodies, as UNECA, UNITU, UNGAID, and the global internet regulator ICANN, where her work has influenced the formation of key African and Global organizations that made significant impact on the implementation of important public policies on technology and global internet governance. She has also performed high-level public engagements and policy advocacy at US Congress. She has served on Education Boards and public policy think tanks and forums in the US and Europe. Bekele is often invited to speak at international conferences, deliver keynote speeches, and moderate high-level panels. She is a published writer and commentator and uses her social media platforms for inspirational talks on “Conversations that Matter,” affecting the general public. Bekele holds an MBA in Management of Information Systems (MIS) from Golden Gate University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Analysis & Computer Systems (BACS) from San Francisco State University. She holds various professional certifications in IT control compliance, legal and governance of Enterprise Systems: CISA, CCS, and CGEIT. Sophia was dubbed 2021 Women of Influence Honoree, by Silicon Valley Business Journal, which celebrates women for their outstanding achievements in their industry and community. Her Miss.Africa Digital seedfund award program earned her Africa Link’s “Champion of Development” 2018 Solidarity Awards in Switzerland. In 2017 this same program was named a finalist at the United Nations/ITU Equals in Tech Awards. CIO East Africa in2017namedher “Industry Trailblazer” and “Internet Governance Pioneer.” In 2013, she was enumerated as one of the “Two Leading ladies” in Africa’s ICT sector and “African Women to Watch” by Bloomberg TV, recognizing “most fearless, competitive and visionary women of our time, the women working hard to close the gender gap and shaping the continent’s social, political and economic landscape.” That year, UK’s New African Magazine also named her as one of “50 African Trailblazers – a Future Made in Africa” for her various accomplishments, including her wildly acclaimed and successful 6-year Yes2DotAfrica multi- lingual global awareness campaign for the “.africa” Internet domain name, which as a result held a position of top 50 most attractive from among 1930 new global generic top-level domains by industry agency, also earning her a title “brains behind .africa’, by African media. About Sophia Bekele Eshete www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - Kenya - SophiaBekele Eshete Founder and CEO of DotConnectAfrica Group www.dotconnectafrica.com “ The downturn has pushed the technology tipping point – digitization is the reset for growth - for the next normal for both business and industry levels.
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Born in 1970 inMorocco, Mohamed Hassan BENSALAH after a baccalaureate type B in the French school, went to France for higher studies where he obtained a Master in management and finance at Sorbonne University and l’Ecole des Cadres de Paris. Mohamed Hassan BENSALAH succeeded in 1993 to his late father and founder of Holmarcom GROUP as a chairman and CEO. Mohamed is also : • President of the Moroccan Federation of Insurance and Reinsurance Companies (FMSAR) ; • Member of the Board of Directors of the General Confederation of Enterprises of Morocco (CGEM), the Casablanca Finance City and the Stock Exchange of Casablanca ; • Member of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council ; • Member of the Board of Directors of Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment, Mohammed V Foundation for Solidarity and Alaouite Foundation for Sustainable Human Development ; • Member of the Supervisory Board of BMCI bank (BNP Paribas Group), of the board of Directors of CIH bank, the Moroccan Inter-Professional Retirement Fund (CIMR),… He was decorated as Knight of the Order of the Throne of Morocco (Wissam Al Arch) by His Majesty King Mohammed VI, in 2004 Company Profile Holmarcom is a Moroccan private group with a privileged role among the major players of Moroccan economy. It operates in several core businesses and most of its subsidiaries are reference companies in their sector. Driven by an ambitious business project and human resources mobilized around a common vision, theGroup consolidates its leadership by pursuing a policy of innovation and an entrepreneurial growth strategy in the wake of the national economic momentum generated at highest level. It invests in major strategic sectors for the sustainable development of Morocco and the African continent. The rise of Holmarcom Group is linked to that of a family that brought in its ambitions, values and stability. Its history is that of a succession of achievements led by a visionary family: The late Abdelkader Bensalah, well-known founder renowned for his ambition, seriousness and honesty, and then his son, Mohamed Hassan Bensalah, who took up the torch with the others members of the Board of Directors, in order to keep up the momentum of development and growth. The late Abdelkader Bensalah, a true visionary and combatant, managed to lead his Group towards success in the 1960s. He did not just acquire stakes in many companies, but he made of the diversification policy his hobbyhorse, taking over Les Eaux Minérales d’Oulmès, Le Comptoir Métallurgique Marocain, Orbonor Textile et Orbonor Céréales. In the early 70s, the late Abdelkader Bensalah opened himself the door of insurance by the acquisition of Entente, Al Amane and Atlanta. After the death of the late Abdelkader Bensalah in 1993, his son Mohamed Hassan Bensalah took over the Group as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. With perspicacity and lucidity, he could perpetuate the family assets by restructuring the Group, before launching a development phase, particularly by entering into several alliances and partnerships. From human adventures to industrial performance, from tradition and know-how to innovation, Holmarcom Group has since continued its development. Today, the Group affirms its position as a leader in several activity sectors and opens up on new opportunities for growth, particularly internationally. About Mohamed www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - Morocco - Mohamed Hassan Bensalah Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Holmarcom Group www.holmarcom.ma/en “ We are making of sharing, team spirit, support for the common interest and synergy the key for the success of our Group.
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Ms Lettie Mashau was appointed by the Board of Directors of Motheo Construction Group, on the 9 September 2019, as the new Chief Executive Officer. Ms Mashau has been a part of the Motheo family for 15 years. Ear-marked early on as Dr. Ndlovu’s successor, Ms Mashau has been closely mentored by Dr. Ndlovu for many years. Having grown up in the township of Malamulele, Limpopo, Ms Mashau joined Motheo Construction Group as a trainee site Quantity Surveyor in 2005, having qualified with a Diploma in Building and Civil Engineering. Showing integrity, determination and initiative in the work place, Ms Mashau took the opportunities offered her by Motheo with both hands. She quickly rose through the ranks. She is a shareholder and Director at Motheo. Prior to taking up the position as CEO, she held direct oversight of all Northern Cape, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, North West, Free State and Pretoria operations. Lettie has served on the Motheo Board since September 2011, which oversees the company’s national operations and strategic direction. Ms. Mashau has time and time again risen the Motheo flag high. Her character and industry track record express the culture, ethos and excellence that is Motheo. Whilst we all wish that Dr. Ndlovu was still with us, we know that this appointment would have been her hope. We believe that this appointment honours her legacy. Company Profile The late dr. Thandi ndlovu established the motheo construction group in 1997. She teamed up with chris cudmore and tim potter and under the trio’s leadership, motheo developed into south africa’s leading, predominantly black female owned and managed construction company. We are the leading provider of Social Housing in the country, but we are far more than a housing company. Having branched out into general building, civil construction, water saving technologies, electrical works, as well as having established a fully fledged academy, Motheo is a formidable force in the construction industry. One of our key focus areas is the development of young talent. Having diligently worked on this over the years, 35% of the company’s shares are black female owned, as well as a Board seated with four black females. Through Dr. Ndlovu’s involvement, Motheo is a founder member and leading role player in South African Women In Construction (SAWIC). Dr. Ndlovu was the past president of the Black Business Council for the Built Environment. While the company has grown and diversified into other fields, Motheo remains fully committed to Social Housing. CORE VALUES We believe in embracing all people of our nation - working together to bring true change. We put roofs over heads, but we also put work boots on feet. We believe in giving real opportunity to young South Africans, with genuine authority and responsibility. We believe in building our nation not only with bricks and mortar, but with the powerful spark that comes from unity. KEY FOCUS AREAS One of our key focus areas is the development of young talent. Having diligently worked on this over the years, 35% of the company’s shares are black female owned, as well as a Board seated with four black females. We pride ourselves in being TRULY EMPOWERED. QUALITY The company is currently registered with the CIDB as 9 GBPE, 9 CEPE, 7EBPE and 7EPPE. Motheo has been registered with the NHBRC since its inception and remains in good standing. While the company has grown and diversified into other fields, Motheo remains committed to Social Housing. ENVIRONMENT FRIENDLINESS Besides valuing your time, your money and your vision for the project, we also value the Mother Nature as well…It cannot be denied anymore, that even the small construction implements the nature in a bad way… That’s why we’re leading the effort to use only ecofriendly materials and comply with keeping the environment unpollluted by the work we do! About Lettie Mashau www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - Lettie Mashau Chief Executive Officer of Motheo Construction Group www.motheogroup.co.za “ We believe in building our nation not only with bricks and mortar, but with the powerful spark that comes from unity.
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Lyle Malander is an award-winning Chartered Accountant based in Johannesburg, South Africa. After fulfilling roles in audit and advisory at Deloitte, he co-founded the Malander Group, together with Shaveera John in October 2015. Under his leadership, the Malander Group has grown into a multi-disciplinary professional services group servicing an array of clients ranging from Small and Medium sized businesses to listed and multi-national entities. Lyle currently serves as a non-executive board member for several non-profit organisations and serves as a co-chair of the South African FinBiz2030 task force. This task force is aimed at mobilising and uniting the finance and business community to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals as set by the United Nations by 2030. In 2018 he was named the winner of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants Top35under35 awards and in 2019 he was named the Young Professional of the Year in the Commerce and Law category of the South African Professional Services awards. Company Profile With offices based in Johannesburg and London, the Malander Group is a Professional Services Group providing business growth and support services. The Group was established in October 2015 through the core service offering of Malander Advisory, a Chartered Accounting and Financial Advisory firm, and has grown into a multi-faceted Group of companies providing professional services in 3 key supporting functions of any business, namely Finance, Human Capital, and Digital Marketing. The Malander Group consists of the following companies: Malander Advisory A team of highly skilled Chartered Accountants and finance professionals. They act as a support function to the Chief Financial Officers of clients. Malander Advisory provides services to an array of listed and multi-national companies with vast experience in various sectors. The key service areas include: • Finance function outsourcing • Statutory and internal financial reporting • Finance function automation • Technical accounting; and • Local and international taxation. Malander Placements A professional recruitment and human capital solutions firm that offers an array of recruitment services. The firm’s core focus is to identify talented individuals that can support the human capital strategies of any business. M-inent Solutions (Pronounced “eminent”) A cloud accounting professional services firm that provides expert accounting services to SMMEs and assists in enhancing the entrepreneurial landscape. Evergreen Media A Business-to-Business digital marketing agency providing services to a variety of clients, focussing on digital marketing, Search Engine Optimisation and lead generation. The Malander Group has extensive experience in providing supporting function services to the three key functional areas in any business and is committed to facilitate economic growth through the current development of an online platform focusing on the GIG economy. This peer-to peer digital platform will focus on Education and Training whilst connecting freelancers and professionals with business owners to drive revenue. About Lyle Malander www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - Lyle Malander CEO of Malander Group www.malandergroup.co.za E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: (+27) 87 067 4941 “ We are committed to facilitate economic growth through the current development of an online platform focusing on the GIG economy.
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Nargis is the founder of FACT, she has a BA Honours degree in Psychology from the University of the Western Cape and has successfully completed her PBL from UNISA SBL. Her career spans 27 years, 20 years of which have been at the helm of FACT. Early on in her career, Nargis held numerous senior roles at The South African Post Office; Siemens LTD; Momentum and The National Treasury. Nargis prides herself as being a mechanism for empowerment and transformation. Her passion for success has resulted in her growing a business from inception into a leading brand that is recognised by the telecommunications and engineering sectors as a supplier of choice. Her goal is to facilitate business to put economic development at the forefront of getting gender equality in Africa. There is a need for Black females to build an economic network and allow that to be a catalyst for change and social improvement. She is actively addressing this through education; upskilling and training initiatives as well as directly empowering women-owned businesses via the provision of financial and business development support services. Nargis’ through leadership and business transformation has earned both FACT and her numerous achievements over the years. Her leadership philosophy of “knowledgeable, empowering and accountability still remain the heartbeat of the organisations transformational journey accumulating several industry awards and powered by her team, she now employs in excess of 260 people who achieve great milestones epitomised by winning awards and accolades such as; FACT named in TOP 30 list for 2010 Legatum Africa Awards for Entrepreneurship, FACT recognised as a Leading Transformation Company in Africa for 2014, 2016 and 2017 by Impumelelo, FACT featured in the TOP 500 South Africa’s Best Managed Companies for 2018, FACT recognized as Best for Business Process Outsourcing in Engineering, Telecommunications and IT in the MEA Markets South African Business Awards 2018 and 2021, personally and professionally FACT CEO - Nargis Gani, has been named: Winner Top Empowered Entrepreneur of 2015 in the Oliver Empowerment Awards. Her mantra of “Everything you do in business, must be client orientated” and is the energy that operates the engine of FACT. At FACT we are at the forefront of evolutionary demand, continuously revisiting our service offering to ensure we remain relevant to our clients’ needs. We apply a simple three-point approach to our transformational journey; Expand, Retain, Attract. Everything begins with retention, stick to the knitting, and keep clients engaged through superior service delivery, we attract new customers through earning a great reputation and referral from our existing clients. To expand our business portfolio we remain relevant with the times, we listen to our clients, our business is about providing a range of outsourced professional and managed services and we strive to be better than our own last performance, a process of continuous improvement is building towards dependency on digital as a Managed Service Provider in both the client and FACT operations, we are adopting robotic processing automation to improve efficiencies in workflow management, we are creating value with digital services by introducing technology such as IoT remote monitoring solutions to augment our traditional services and most importantly build new ecosystems in our engagements, we do this to generate value in effectiveness and efficiencies, we are committing on 4IR technologies and 5G network slicing, we’re leveraging our ecosystem to build and operate private wireless networks and virtual next generation networks that uses new virtual and software defined appliances (SDN/NFV). Our mission is to move from a managed service provider to a digital services provider and we do this by empowering learning and development in digital tools and services. We are strengthening our position as an appealing employer and industry citizen implementing innovative offerings. About Nargis Gani www. ceotodaymagaine . com CEO Today Af r i ca Award s 2021 - South Af r i ca - Nargis Gani Founder and CEO of FACT www.factsa.co.za “ Everything you do in business, must be client orientated.