Meet Absa’s new Group Chief Executive Daniel Mminele

Absa media statement

Absa Group today announced the appointment of Aaron Daniel Mminele as Group Chief Executive of Absa Group, effective from 15 January 2020. Mminele will be taking over from René van Wyk, who has been leading the bank on an interim basis since Maria Ramos’ retirement in February 2019.

Mminele spent more than 20 years at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), where he rose through the ranks to be a Deputy Governor and a member of key committees such as the Monetary Policy Committee and Financial Stability Committee. His other main responsibilities at the SARB included financial markets and international economic relations and policy.

He has represented South Africa in a number of international forums such as the G20, BRICS and the International Monetary Fund. He was also a regular participant in National Treasury’s international investor roadshows to promote South Africa.

Also read: SARB’s Mminele looks to be heading for Ramos’s ABSA office

“I am delighted to be joining the Absa group. I look forward to being part of and leading the exciting journey that Absa has embarked upon to regain its rightful place in the South African market as well as to fully establish itself as an independent African financial services group with deep roots in South Africa.”

Before joining the SARB, Mminele worked as a banker. After completing a Diploma in Banking at Sparkasse Paderborn in Germany in 1987, he spent eight years in various roles at the Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale, at its Düsseldorf and London offices. He continued his studies while in the UK and obtained various certificates from the UK’s Chartered Institute of Bankers.

He came back to South Africa in 1995, then spent about two years each at Commerzbank, working as a customer relations manager in corporate banking, and at African Merchant Bank, as a project and structured finance specialist, in Johannesburg.

Also read: Absa ‘courts’ SARB deputy governor Mminele for CEO role

“We are really looking forward to Daniel joining the Absa Group and to his leadership in driving our strategy and guiding this organisation into the future,” said Wendy Lucas-Bull, Chairman of the Absa Group Board.

Van Wyk will step down as Chief Executive on 14 January 2020, but remain with the Group as an executive director for handover purposes until 31 January 2020.  He will rejoin Absa Group and Absa Bank’s boards as a non-executive director, following a six-month cooling-off period.

Mminele’s full biography

Aaron Daniel Mminele is the incoming CEO of Absa Group Limited, a Johannesburg-headquartered financial services company that has operations in 10 other African countries and representative offices in Namibia, Nigeria and London.  Absa is one of the big five banks in South Africa and is listed on the JSE.

Mminele spent two decades at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), and was a deputy governor and a member of the Monetary Policy Committee at the time of his departure.

As deputy governor of the SARB, he was responsible for overseeing a number of departments such as financial markets, international economic relations and policy, National Payments System, financial surveillance as well as the human resources and operations cluster.

His key responsibilities – prior to becoming a deputy governor – was as head of the financial markets department and as executive general manager: Markets, which included responsibility for the foreign exchange desk, managing the forward book, reserves management, correspondent banking, financial markets research, and monetary policy implementation.

He had membership of several SARB committees including the Prudential Committee, Risk Management, Financial Stability, and chairing the Reserve Management Committee and IT Investment Committee.

Before joining the SARB, Mminele worked as a banker for 12 years.

After completing a diploma in banking at Sparkasse Paderborn in Germany in 1987, he worked at Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale for eight years split between the bank’s offices in Düsseldorf and London. His various roles included work as a loans officer in the international finance department, a corporate credit risk analyst before becoming an assistant manager for specialised finance focusing on project finance and public private partnerships by the time he left in 1995.

Mminele furthered his studies with the City Polytechnic of London/Guidhall University in association with Chartered Institute of Bankers, and obtained a number of certificates from the Institute of Bankers in the UK.

He came back to South Africa in 1995 and spent two years at Commerzbank Johannesburg as Customer Relations Manager for Corporate Banking and another two years at African Merchant Bank as deputy divisional head of special projects, responsible for infrastructure and project finance.

Born in Phalaborwa, Limpopo on 28 March 1965, Mminele is a father of two children and speaks three languages, Sepedi, English and German. In 2018, German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier awarded Mminele with the Great Order of Merit for his work in furthering German-South African relations.

In 2019, Mminele was the recipient of the Lifetime Achiever Award from the Association of Black Securities and Investment Proffessionals (ABSIP).

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