The week that was in the finance community

In focus this week: Afrocentric Health CFO explains its favourible empowerment profile and more.

Finance professionals play a vital role during a mergers and acquisitions (M&A) process. CFOs or financial directors go beyond the reporting role when assessing a potential deal. They are often tasked with making the financial metrics of a deal work, creating cost and integration synergies between the acquirer and acquired.

CFO South Africa, which is M&A Africa’s sister publication and website, is close to financial professionals and their circles. Here’s what had the finance community talking this week.

Afrocentric Health CFO explains how the company achieved a Level 1 BEE rating

Afrocentric Health CFO Hannes Boonzaaier (pictured) is simple about his approach to helping the company to achieve a Level 1 rating: “You just look at what’s got to be done and you do it.”

“How do you eat an elephant?” the old question goes. The answer? “Bit by bit.” This is how Hannes Boonzaaier, Afrocentric Health CFO and recent winner of the Transformation Award at the CFO Awards, outlines his company’s contribution to the ideal of universal healthcare.

“We see opportunities where we can provide solutions on a smaller scale,” he says. “We’re already providing a chronic medication solution to 750,000 state patients in four provinces. We deliver their medication to them at their workplaces so they don’t have to go into the clinics. We started this with the Department of Health in 2014, and it’s already grown to significant volumes, making it worthwhile even though the margins are low.” Read more here

Avoid these five change management pitfalls in your compliance projects

Change Management is one of the core elements of any compliance project, as it creates a cohesive approach for the implementation of the project. It is vital for the organisation to ensure that there is commitment not only at an executive level but also with the actual users. Bizmod’s Sandi Hager explains what change management challenges you need to overcome to ensure success. She proposes five pitfalls to avoid to ensure the success of your compliance project. Read more here

CFOs and travel Special Feature part 4: Acer Africa FD Estelle Tait comes prepared

Acer Africa financial director Estelle Tait’s travel tips are pragmatic and actionable. Firstly, she agrees, “comfort is key”, and for her, this starts with comfortable clothing, including a warmer item for layering up “when the temperature in the aircraft drops” as it usually does overnight. There’s also comfort of the skin-deep kind: she recommends keeping your moisturiser to hand, so the dry cool circulating air doesn’t dry you out.

Read more here

Planning on writing a cheque for more than R50,000? Think again

The Payments Association of South Africa (PASA) has announced that, after careful consideration and consultation with key stakeholders, it will be reducing the maximum value for writing a cheque from the current value of R500,000 to R50,000 with effect from 1 May 2020. 

PASA CEO Walter Volker believes that this limit reduction stems from the need for better risk management and the ongoing decline in the use of cheques as a payment method. 

“Although less than 10 percent of signed cheques are for values above R50 000, the inherent risk of transactions above R50 000 is higher, based on potential fraud. A reduced cheque limit will thus reduce the risks associated with fraud losses and system failures,” says Volker. Read more here

Hammerson appoints James Lenton as its new CFO

Hammerson has announced the appointment of James Lenton as its new CFO and executive director. He will become an executive director upon joining the company on 16 September and will take over the role of CFO with effect from 1 October. 

James succeeds Timon Drakesmith, the current CFO and MD, who announced his resignation in May. He will step down as executive director and CFO on 1 October and leave the company on 15 November, following a handover and transition period with James. Read more here