Big in­vest­ment… and big probes

The Africa Report - - BUSINESS TOP 500 COMPANIES - M.A.

SOUTH AFRICA’S state-owned lo­gis­tics com­pany Transnet (#28), its freight rail busi­ness (#55) and its ports com­pany (#178) are among the big­gest lo­gis­tics com­pa­nies by turnover on the con­ti­nent. They have ben­e­fited from a gov­ern­men­tled in­vest­ment drive that plans to pour $26bn into the com­pa­nies. “At Transnet, we’ve gone through a pe­riod of quite ex­ten­sive in­vest­ment in in­fra­struc­ture to re­ally re­ha­bil­i­tate, re­new and re­fur­bish our ports and rail in­fra­struc­ture, pri­mar­ily to make sure that we can con­tinue to sup­port our ex­ist­ing busi­ness,” Karl Xhanti So­cikwa, CEO of Transnet Port Ter­mi­nals, tells The Africa Re­port. The gov­ern­ment sec­onded Transnet chief ex­ec­u­tive Brian Molefe to strug­gling elec­tric­ity com­pany Eskom in early 2016, but Molefe re­signed in Novem­ber af­ter the pub­lic pro­tec­tor re­leased a re­port about the in­flu­ence of the Gupta fam­ily on the state. Un­der the lead­er­ship of cur­rent chief ex­ec­u­tive Siyabonga Gama, Transnet faces in­ves­ti­ga­tions into pre­vi­ous con­tracts linked to the Gupta fam­ily, in­clud­ing the pub­lic en­ter­prise’s re­la­tion­ship with a com­pany called Homix.

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