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More than 70% of chartered accountants [CAs(SA)] registered with the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) practise in commerce and industry – the largest constituency of SAICA’s total membership.

With the aim of addressing the constituency’s needs, SAICA recently hosted the inaugural SAICA Captains of Industry Gala Dinner and official launch of the Leadership Forum for its members in commerce and industry.

The event ushered in a new era where the commerce and industry constituency name was changed to Members in Business (MIB) in line with international trends. It also signaled SAICA’s intentions to broaden the scope of its services to include the public sector, state owned enterprises and academia.

At the event, the Leadership Forum was chaired by Roy Andersen, Chairman of Sanlam. In his address Andersen urged business and government to work together with SAICA in the interest of a better South Africa.

He went on to say that although national initiatives such as the Big Business Working Group and Business Leadership South Africa have been established, there is still scope for chartered accountants who are captains of industry to do more. Andersen emphasised the need for job creation and skills development. He then briefly described the progress being made in the three areas where he is personally involved:

  • Business Against Crime
  • The Business Trust
  • The Reserves of the South African National Defense Force.

Speaking at the launch, Jan Labuschagne, CEO of Sappi Southern Africa and Chairman of the MIB Committee at SAICA said, “An integral part of the MIB Committee’s strategy is to develop a value proposition for MIB in the various industry sectors they operate in”.

Labuschagne further stated that the main objective of the event was to create a forum that will continue to serve as a platform for interaction with key decision makers in business, as well as the public sector, so as to identify and facilitate the discussion and possible resolution of issues of mutual interest.

Kelly Masete, SAICA’s Project Director – MIB, stated that globalisation, and information and communication technology have brought with it a need for a new body of knowledge skills and that modern business has adapted to function in a fast paced, complex, dynamic and demanding environment. All these developments, he said, were not without inherent risks.

Masete stressed that recent international corporate collapses and scandals have created a heightened awareness and need for the improvement of corporate governance, ethical and moral leadership – areas that SAICA has not focused on as part of its traditional service offering of accounting, auditing and taxation issues.

“The chartered accountant of the future has to be more than an accountant. Extending SAICAs service offering to include corporate governance, ethics and sustainability should assist in SAICA providing a more relevant and focused service to its predominant member grouping. SAICAs vision is to develop leaders and with this in mind the main challenge is to move from accountant to value-added business advisor, and develop professionals for a changing world.”

A core mission of the SAICA Leadership Forum, explains Masete, is to facilitate an effective dialogue with business and government. “Our vision is to be recognised in South Africa’s business community as the leading independent forum for sharing innovative thinking, best practices, and tools in strategic management and leadership.”

For more information please contact:

Thando Pato
Corporate Communications Co-ordinator
The SA Institute of Chartered Accountants
Tel: (011) 621 6898
Email: thandop@saica.co.za

Kelly Masete
Project Director: Members in Business
The SA Institute of Chartered Accountants
Tel: (011) 621 6740
Email: kellym@saica.co.za