Mr Market’s thumbs up for new Investec CEOs – this time he’s got it right 

By Alec Hogg

Visiting Sun City is always a treat, especially when it’s the first night back from a northern winter. But yesterday’s trip was special. Mostly because it was an opportunity to share some Davos-generated good news for SA with the 650 or so gathered for the annual Shell dealer conference. I’ll be sharing a similar message – but adding share recommendations – in Cape Town tonight; Jhb tomorrow and Durban on Monday. We still have some tickets available for Biznews Premium members; let Jeanette know if you’d like to come along.

One of my favourite stocks, Investec, jumped almost 3% yesterday on the disclosure of its long-in-gestation succession plans. Methinks this is one time Mr Market has it right. I’ll miss engaging with the outgoing chiefs, co-founders Stephen Koseff and Bernard Kantor, who’ve been on my journalistic radar for almost four decades. But in appointing Fani Titi and Hendrik du Toit as the new joint CEOs, they’ve chosen brilliantly.

Seeing the Investec news reminded me of a memorable lunch at the Grill House in Rosebank with Fani and the late Simon Marais, the peerless chairman of Allan Gray. It was like sitting in on a maths master class. And those who were also around back then will well remember how Hendrik started Investec’s now $215bn Asset Management business with just a PA and a landline.

Having entrepreneurially-minded, intellectually-gifted leaders is no guarantee for business success. But when you’re playing in the global Premier League, it sure helps.

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