Correction: Setting record straight on Transaction Capital founders

In my letter to the community last night, Orbvest CEO Martin Freeman was referred to as a co-founder of Transaction Capital. I got it wrong and apologise for the sloppiness. Martin co-founded Bayport which although an important constituent of Transaction Capital, was not a founding member of the group.

This morning both Transaction Capital’s founding CEO Mark Lamberti and his successor David Hurwitz dropped me mails to set the record straight. Their correspondence is republished in full below.

For context, my letter referenced Martin and fellow Orbvest director Justin Clarke as the guests on tonight’s investment webinar where they will share their entrepreneurial stories – and update us on the latest co-investing opportunities Orbvest has uncovered in US medical property.

The webinar starts at 7pm. Because of Orbvest’s sponsorship, participation is free. But you will need to register beforehand – click here to sign up.

Email from Mark Lamberti:

Dear Alec,

Congratulations on your new partnership with Lebashe.

This note is just a quick fact check on your introduction to tonight’s seminar.

Although I am very fond of Martin Freeman and admire his recent accomplishments, he was not a founder or major contributor to the growth of Transaction Capital. The founding partners were Jonathan Jawno, Michael Mendelowitz and Rob Rossi (still major shareholders). They subsequently acquired Paycorp, founded by Steven Kark.

In late 2007 the four of them approached me to invest in and become Group CEO of the Transaction Capital group, at that time a loose collection of 16 founder managed credit and payment businesses. I assumed the position on 1st July 2008 and held it until January 2014, when I appointed current CEO David Hurwitz as my successor and became non-executive chairman. During my tenure, income and headline earnings each grew over 300%, ten operating entities were closed or disposed of, four acquired and five merged, and the company was listed on the JSE on 7th June 2012.

Martin Freeman’s part in the above was as an executive and minor shareholder in Bayport, in which we acquired an 82.65% interest for R537m in March 2010. Paycorp and Bayport were disposed of in late 2013 pursuant to Transaction Capital being a listed entity focussed on asset backed lending and credit services, which it still is today.

Under the heading of “success has a thousand fathers…” I felt it necessary to provide you with this detail.

With best regards,


Letter from David Hurwitz:

Dear Alec,

I hope you are well.

My name is David Hurwitz, the CEO of Transaction Capital, a JSE listed financial services business. You may recall me, we did meet a few years ago.

A friend forwarded your email message from yesterday to me. I noticed that for some reason you have named Martin Freeman as a founder of Transaction Capital. This unfortunately is not factually correct.

Martin was the CEO of a business that Transaction Capital invested in in 2010. Transaction Capital itself was founded many years prior to that, probably 9 years before by Jonanthan Jawno, Michael Mendelowitz and Roberto Rossi.

Would it be possible to circulate a correction of this error please? Should you wish to contact me, my details are below.


David Hurwitz, CEO, Transaction Capital Limited

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