“In 2008, SAICA published the first South African CFO of the Future book”
Intro - SAICA CFO Support Activities
It was condensed from a research paper, which was prepared in conjunction with the University of Johannesburg (UJ). The report highlighted the challenges posed by the evolving CFO requirements. This ground breaking project was led by research academic Professor Thea Voogt on the side of UJ and Graham Terry on the side of SAICA.
This was followed by another benchmarking study by our strategic partner, Deloitte, which looked at the different strategies pursued by CFOs during the recent global financial recession. The Deloitte project was led by the then partner responsible for CFO development, Hugh Harrison. During 2010, SAICA produced the CFO of the Future Part II research paper, again with UJ. This paper was aimed at determining how the effects of the global financial crisis have impacted on the roles and responsibilities of CFOs. For the past three years, we have hosted a number of Special Interest Group networking sessions to share with you these and other topical financial issues presented by leading academics, economists, local executives, international experts and Deloitte.
SAICA and its focus on CFOs
A CFO forum has been established within SAICA with the following objectives in respect of finance executives:
- To provide a networking platform
- To provide ad hoc learning opportunities, such as focused seminars and workshops
- To provide structured learning opportunities
- To provide knowledge and thought leadership platforms, such as research, benchmarking, etc.
The Members in Business Unit at SAICA has also started to offer specific business oriented ad hoc learning opportunities in the form of workshops, seminars and masterclasses, which are aimed at meeting the needs of finance executives. Over and above the technical courses, which are driven by our Standards Division, we have held the following conferences and seminars:
- CFO Challenge Conference in association with TOPCO media held in Johannesburg and Cape Town. This conference sought to highlight the challenges faced by the modern finance executive and sensitised many people about those issues.
- Mergers and Acquisitions Conference in association with TOPCO media held in Johannesburg.
- The International Finance Conference in association with Stern Stewart International in Cape Town. This brought together leading international thinkers in modern finance theory such as:
- Myron Scholes (Nobel Laureate, Black-Scholes Option Pricing Model),
- Michael Jensen (Agency Theory),
- Stewart Myers (Pecking Order Theory),
- Richard Roll and Stephen Ross (Arbitrage Pricing Theory),
- Chester Spatt (Former Chief Economist at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, 2004-2007), and
- Joel Stern (Economic Value Added)
- Executive Remuneration and Incentives Seminar. SAICA took a leadership role in this contentious space (now underpinned by King III) in the backdrop of the recent financial recession in South Africa and elsewhere, coupled with media coverage of numerous business hardships, scandals and the then ailing stock market, which took shareholder activism to new heights. We brought experts to offer insights and guidance by:
- highlighting and benchmarking Global Reward Trends;
- explaining the Fiduciary Duties of Directors;
- assisting with the formulation of appropriate Remuneration Strategies and Policies;
- offering guidance on the different Short- and Long-term incentive strategies.
- Financial Due Diligence Masterclass
- Valuations seminar
- Rolling forecasts seminar
- Finance Strategy: Investigating emerging financial theories.
We are currently looking into structured learning paths for finance executives that will not only cover technical finance issues but also areas of leadership and other pervasive skills, which are proving to be a difficult skill as people go up the corporate ladder. So watch this space!
CFOs on the move
I would like to extend my congratulations to the following CFOs that have assumed new responsibilities in the past few months:
- Mr. Duncan Wattam who was appointed as the new CFO for Standard Bank Private Clients in May.
- Mike Benfield who was appointed as the CFO for Bateman Engineering in May.
- Gary Lea who has been appointed as the Retail Financial Director for Pick n' Pay. Gary has been with Pick n' Pay for 14 years.
- Van Zyl Botha who has been appointed Financial Director at Randgold. He joined Randgold in 2006 and was previously Group Finance Manager and CFO.
- Bakar Jakoet who has been CFO for Pick n Pay Stores Limited to take over from Dennis Cope who is retiring. Bakar was the Chief financial controller. Bakar has been with the group for 26 years.
We wish you all well in your new appointments.
For more information on CFOs reports please visit www.saicacfo.co.za.
Kelly Masete is the Project Director: Member Services, SAICA.