On 30 June 2015, MMI group finance director, Preston Speckmann, effectively retired from his role after 16 years serving the group. Succeeding him is MMI’s CFO, Mary Vilakazi, whose new role as group finance director was effective as of 1 July 2015. Speckmann will also step down as an executive director and Vilakazi will take up the role of executive director to the MMI Holdings and MMI Group Boards. Vilakazi first became associated with MMI when she was a partner at PwC responsible for the Metropolitan audit. She then served as a non-executive director of Metropolitan and subsequently as nonexecutive director of MMI where she was a member of the audit and actuarial committees. In May 2014, Vilakazi was appointed as an executive of MMI as the CEO of Balance Sheet Management and became MMI’s chief financial officer in September that same year.
Vilakazi’s appointment completes the succession planning and structured handover process implemented in 2014 ahead of Speckmann’s retirement. Also leaving effective 30 June is group executive for strategic HR and transformation, Ngao Motsei, who is leaving corporate to pursue other interests. Motsei joined MMI in June 2011 as group executive: strategic HR and took over the transformation portfolio in October 2012. She will also step down as an executive director on the MMI Holdings Board and as MMI group executive for strategic HR and transformation on 30 June 2015. CEO Nicolaas Kruger has expressed his gratitude to Speckmann and Motsei for their valuable contributions to MMI Holdings and has wished Vilakazi well in her new role.
business in South Africa. On May 28, the ACE Group announced that COO, Gary Jack, would be promoted to the position of country president where he will be responsible for managing the performance, strategy and development of all ACE’s property, casualty and consumer lines Jack will be replacing John Nienaber – who has left to pursue opportunities outside of the company, and he will be based in ACE’s Sandton office where he will be reporting to regional president for Eurasia and Africa, Giles Ward. “After three years of valued service as country president, I am very sorry that we are losing John. His leadership has been pivotal to the recent success and growth of our business thanks to his excellent underwriting background and his strong market relationships. He leaves with our sincere appreciation and our best wishes for the future,” said Ward. Jack has spent seven of his 15 years in insurance at ACE. He joined ACE in 2008 as head of accident and health and prior to ACE in South Africa, he worked at AIG South Africa as regional underwriting manager for Africa. Jack started his insurance career at Alexander Forbes Financial Services, one of South Africa’s leading insurance brokers. Ward reports that over the past three years, Jack has been closely involved in the development of the expanded product capability and clear strategy that ACE now has in place in South Africa. He says their business is now well placed for the future thanks to Jack’s strong management track record during the last seven years and he expresses his fullest confidence in Jack as he leads them through the next phase of growth. Brian Seach, chairman of the Board for ACE Insurance Limited in South Africa, said that the board was delighted to welcome Jack to the role of country president for South Africa and that Jack’s extensive insurance industry experience, proven strategic management capabilities and strong market relationships make him well suited for the role. “We look forward to working with him as we continue to grow the business in South Africa. We would also like to thank John for his valuable contribution over the past three years and wish him well in his future endeavours,” said Seach.
The deputy chief executive for Liberty Holdings Ltd, Steven Braudo, has accepted the position of chief executive, wealth for the Standard Bank Group, effective 1 July 2015 and subject to regulatory approval. Braudo’s new role will involve direct management responsibility for the wealth businesses within the banking operations in South Africa, Jersey, the Isle of Man, as well as the rest of Africa in addition to managing the bancassurance relationship with Liberty. He will be relinquishing his executive responsibilities at Liberty, but will remain on the Liberty Holdings board. “Steven’s appointment reflects the strategic importance of Liberty’s relationship with Standard Bank, which gives us a unique competitive advantage in South Africa and the rest of Africa, and forms an integral part of Liberty’s 2020 strategy,” said chief executive, Thabo Dloti. “We are fortunate to have someone with Steven’s experience and expertise in Liberty’s leadership team to assume this important role and ensure continuity for the group. His valuable contribution to the turn-around of the Retail SA business and commitment to the success of the group will remain part of Liberty’s history,” added Dloti, who went on to say that given the depth of the Liberty management team, Braudo’s existing responsibilities would be reallocated appropriately. Dloti looks forward to working with Braudo in his new role; leveraging the synergies between the two entities to unlock value for both groups.