Trevor Manuel oversaw SA’s best economic growth ever; now he’ll work his magic at Old Mutual EM

ANC veteran Trevor Manuel is on the rise in the corporate world, with Old Mutual Emerging Markets hoping he will work his magic for the financial services giant’s shareholders. The first black finance minister, Manuel retired from his political career in 2014.  Under Manuel, Old Mutual Emerging Markets is likely to flourish. When Manuel was in charge of the country’s finances, South Africa enjoyed its most concerted period of growth ever. He developed a global reputation as a highly effective finance minister during his 13-year tenure. His departure from front-row politics was a blow for the ANC and the country. The FT notes that Manuel’s shift into the corporate world was seen as “symbolic blow” for the liberation movement as it attracted increasing criticism for cronyism, corruption and patronage. Manuel has periodically taken aim at President Jacob Zuma and has shown support for finance minister Pravin Gordhan, who many believe could be axed to make way for a finance minister who will work in the interests of a corrupt clique. Old Mutual Emerging Markets operates across Africa, Asia and Latin America. Its gain is undoubtedly the ANC’s loss. – Jackie Cameron

From Fin24

Cape Town – Former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel has replaced Old Mutual CEO Bruce Hemphill as chairperson of Old Mutual Emerging Markets (OMEM) as part of the wider group’s separation process.

Old Mutual announced the move on Thursday, saying it is an important step in the business readiness process for OMEM under Old Mutual’s managed separation strategy. Hemphill will remain on the OMEM board, it said in a statement.

Trevor Manuel, former South African Finance Minister.

Manuel, who has been on the board of OMEM since 2015, will oversee the establishment of the appropriate board and governance structures for an independently-listed OMEM and in line with the King IV Report on Corporate Governance which will come into effect on 1 April 2017.

Old Mutual Group is embarking on a managed separation, which will entail separating its four businesses into standalone entities: OMEM, Nedbank, Old Mutual Wealth and OM Asset Management. The separation is set to be complete by the end of 2018.  

“It is a pleasure to announce Trevor as chairman of OMEM as his credential reflect his extensive experience and leadership across business and the public sector,” said Hemphill.

“In particular he embodies the values of Old Mutual and King IV in aligning good corporate governance with good corporate citizenship.”

Manuel said this is an important and exciting time to become chairperson of OMEM.

“The company has made a significant contribution to South Africa over many years and it will remain a priority that Old Mutual contributes to the prosperity of all South African citizens.”

Meanwhile, Old Mutual on Thursday posted a 1% rise in operating profit to £1.7bn in its preliminary results for the 2016 financial year.

It furthermore declared a second interim dividend for the year ended 31 December 2016 of 3.39p (54c) per share.

“The second interim dividend, together with the first interim dividend of 2.67p (43c) per share paid in October 2016, equates to approximately 3.2 times the Company’s adjusted operating profit earnings cover for the full year,” it said in a statement. – Fin24


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