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Articles

18 October 2017

The tech-savvy CFO holds the power

It is vitally important for today’s CFO to be tech-savvy, though they should resist the urge to purchase technology for technology’s sake and instead respond to the needs of the business. This was the advice of Christine Ramon, CFO of AngloGold Ashanti, and Wayne Koonin, CFO of Omnia Holdings and winner of the Finance & Technology Award at this year's CFO Awards, during last week’s Finance Indaba Africa 2017, held at the Sandton Convention Centre.

13 October 2017

Companies must adapt to the fast pace of change or die, says Yumna Tayob

How do you create a culture of innovation in your organisation, Yumna Tayob, a solutionist with Iconoclast, speaking at Finance Indaba Africa on 13 October 2017 asked the assembled finance professionals? “The first industrial revolution took just over a century, in less than a century the second and third had happened, and now we find ourselves in the fourth. This unprecedented pace of change is driving the fact that innovation is a journey and not a destination, and companies that do not adapt to this are going to die.”

12 October 2017

"The offering" - Standard Bank's solution co-created with accountants and entrepreneurs

If you could design a banking solution for your startup, would it look like a traditional bank offering? Standard Bank is betting on no, gathering a tech and customer-focused team and giving them major leeway to experiment with the entrepreneur banking model. According to Standard Bank’s Angé Baard, Paton Raman, and Gugu Sithole, who presented the idea to intrigued accountants and entrepreneurs at Finance Indaba Africa on 12 October 2017, it is built on the concept of co-creation. The team is so focused on flipping the usual path of product development that they haven’t even named this service yet, calling themselves simply “the offering” or “the proposition”.

12 October 2017

Dream big, change your life, says Sihle Ndzimbomvu

The support of small black-owned accounting firms made it possible for a young woman from rural KwaZulu-Natal to achieve her dream of becoming a CA. “This is the story of changing your life by having a desire to achieve big,” said Sihle Ndzimbomvu, audit manager at Ngubane & Co, speaking at Finance Indaba Africa 2017. “It is not only the story of my childhood but also the story of a black woman who is breaking barriers. Women or men can relate to this story because, although we come from different places, we have faced similar challenges.”

11 October 2017

Finance Indaba: TransUnion Africa driving digital transformation agenda

"TransUnion is an exciting business to be a part of. It’s an organisation that has amazing global intellectual property, and when you combine that with great people and data, it allows us to solve some of the greatest challenges businesses and consumers are facing today," says Lee Naik, CEO of TransUnion Africa, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

11 October 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Palladium Business Solutions promises increased turnover, greater efficiency

"Many companies initially, 20 years ago, would write their own software because there was no really great software that was modifiable. All our development is client-driven, because they realise that one defining feature will change my business. We give the clients that defining feature. If we don’t have it, we write it," says Stephen Corrigan, MD of Palladium Business Solutions, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

10 October 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Auditor-General of SA stresses accountability in finance

"In the past year, the AGSA’s general (“state-of-nation”) reports were built around a theme of accountability and we see CFO’s, both in public and private sectors, as critical players in making sure that accountability in our country, with specific reference to public finance and performance management, is strengthened," says Jan van Schalkwyk, corporate executive at the Auditor-General of SA (AGSA), a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

06 October 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Wealth Migrate is opening up the global real estate market

"We launched our blockchain solution at the Finance Indaba last year and now we can build a cryptocurrency, this is the catalyst which will enable us to get it to the $1 investment, which we believe will help bridge the wealth gap," says Scott Picken, founder and CEO of Wealth Migrate, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

29 September 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Hyphen balances payment streams with a single tech stack

"Hyphen will show Finance Executives how to balance payment streams with a single technology stack, whilst enhancing reconciliation and treasury reporting – ultimately translating into optimised cashflow and cashflow reporting for Finance and Treasury teams," says Gillian Stumke, Head: Business Development of Hyphen Technology, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

20 September 2017

CFOs have a huge role to play in driving internal and external automation - CFO Summit 5

Business automation and robotic process automation (RPA) is no longer an experiment and will move ahead at a rate of knots in the years to come. Those companies that do not come onboard with automation processes will find themselves on an uneven footing with their competitors and will be unable to attract and develop top talent. At the same time, finance departments and executives have struggled to get a handle on it. How much efficiency and performance can you derive from automation and what skills are needed to take the next step?

18 September 2017

In-house banking now within reach: Treasury Technologies CEO Rudolph Janse van Rensburg explains

An in-house bank may be simply defined as an internal organisation which assumes some of the functions traditionally performed by external commercial banks to provide enhanced performance, transparency and control. Traditionally, the operation of an in-house bank was regarded by most finance executives to be the preserve of the largest corporations. Despite the many benefits, these structures were thought to be too expensive and complicated to add cost effective value. As more efficient cloud solutions become available, the threshold barriers for justifying in-house bank adoption have been steadily lowered, and positive cost/benefit analyses are becoming more and more common.

13 September 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: IIA SA creates value for business

"Internal auditors are an integral part of the governance processes within an organisation. They provide the ears, eyes and the internal evaluation of organisational activities to both the organisation executive and governing bodies," says Dr Claudelle von Eck, CEO of the Institute of Internal Auditors SA (IIA SA), a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

08 September 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Explore hidden data relationships with South Africa Qlik Master Reseller

"We are passionate about customers achieving real value from the use of Data Analytics and I believe the best way to support this is through sharing experiences and customer stories," says Simon Kirby, Director of Financial Services Industry Solutions at Qlik. South Africa Qlik Master Reseller is a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

01 September 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: QuickBooks is the most popular accounting software on the planet

"QuickBooks has over 42 million users worldwide, making it the best-selling accounting solution in the world, and some of the many reasons for this include a product range that caters for almost all types of businesses and it does not matter whether you are office-bound or on the road," says Nick Braxton, Sales Manager of QuickBooks SA, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

21 August 2017

The 'Patel factor': Minette Smit and Marylla Govender explain

It has been 17 years since the inception of the South African Competition Act, and competition law enforcement continues to be vigorous and successful. Some now argue that competition law and its associated institutions are becoming a victim of their own success. Where other regulators have mostly proven toothless, the Competition Commission and the Competition Tribunal have been able to pry open cartels and punish offenders. Where broader economic policy has failed to force companies to change tack, competition policy clearly has not disappointed. In this article, competition experts Minette Smit and Marylla Govender explore the most recent trends in competition law, along with the rise of ‘the Patel factor’.

17 August 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Build your finance future with AdvanceNet

"We will be talking about how to build your future with the Blueprint for Continuous Accounting. This revolutionary new concept is changing the way accounting and finance are performing and creating a paradigm shift across Modern Finance Organisations," says Bridgette Ward, Sales Manager of AdvanceNet, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

14 August 2017

Cipla SSA CFO Nishant Saxena shares his tips for creating a top team

Nishant Saxena won two Awards at this year’s CFO of the Year Awards – High Performance Team and Young CFO of the Year. He received this recognition because he took Cipla’s struggling, low-margin, sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) unit and turned it into one of the most profitable pharma players in South Africa. In so doing, he completely transformed the finance department, creating a high performance team in the process. Nishant shares his top tips for creating an efficient team.

10 August 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Shanduka Black Umbrellas enables entrepreneurial dreams

"As one of the leading ESD organisations in SA we can support finance professionals with entrepreneurial dreams and capabilities in their journey to develop sustainable businesses. The support we provide encompasses training, physical infrastructure in our incubators, and mentorship," says Nyasha Dzumbunu, CFO of Shanduka Black Umbrellas, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

19 July 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Use DocFox to simplify compliance procedures

"DocFox provides a single solution - endorsed by global law firm, Norton Rose Fulbright - which gives a FSP of any size the assurance that they will remain compliant with ever-changing legislation, while simultaneously creating a seamless customer experience and reducing operational costs," says Ryan Canin, CEO of DocFox, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

18 July 2017

CFOs must have a deep understanding of operations, says Hatch CFO Craig Sumption

Craig Sumption has been with Hatch, a global concern headquartered in Canada and supplying engineering, project and construction management services, process and business consulting and operational services to the mining, metallurgical, energy and infrastructure industries, for more than a decade. He assumed the role of Regional Director of Finance for the firm's African, European and Middle Eastern operations two years ago. A passionate finance man who knew very early on that he wanted to go into the field, the father of three's grasp of the numbers remains second to none. He shared his thoughts with us about volatility, moving into Africa and leadership.

10 July 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: BlackLine allows finance professionals to add true value

“Our platform exists to benefit finance professionals, so is designed to be usable and understandable by them. One of the most common comments we receive from CFOs and finance heads is their surprise in how easily they set up the platform and how quickly they began seeing results.” says Therese Tucker, founder and CEO of BlackLine, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

04 July 2017

Change is inevitable, embrace it, says Loveness Khunou, Dow Southern Africa CFO

Originally from Malawi, Loveness Khunou, Dow Southern Africa CFO, moved to South Africa in 1989. She has a passion for cultures and languages, and is fluent in eight different dialects. “It shows respect if you learn another’s language. It shows that you value them,” she says. “It allows you to better engage with people, and people relate to you differently if you talk to them in their Mother tongue.”

03 July 2017

Finance Indaba 2017: Cassel&Co is fanatical about finance

By focusing only on professionals and clients in these finance and accounting disciplines, we have been able to develop extended networks of talent and have built a thorough understanding of the environments and challenges facing those recruiting finance and accounting teams in a wide range of businesses, from start-ups to corporates," says Georgina Barrick, MD of Cassel&Co, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2017 on 12 and 13 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

03 July 2017

CFOs should expect more change coming, says Standard Bank CIB's Suzette Els

“Allow compliance to participate in front line engagement to create a mutual understanding on key client challenges and pro-actively pick-up on key client challenges,” advises Suzette Els, Chief Compliance Officer for Standard Bank Corporate and Investment Banking. In this article, part of a series from Standard Bank specialists, Suzette talks about trends in the compliance space, how clients are being assisted with these, and what CFOs should expect.

18 May 2017

4 tips for more effective business presentations

You may be technically proficient in completing your finance duties, but so are many of others who are looking to climb the corporate ladder. Effective presentations and stakeholder communication will set you apart from your peers. Become your go-to person for engaging, informative and enjoyable business presentations that don’t leave the audience nodding off into dreamland and you are sure to see your stocks rise. Here are four tips on deliver more effective business presentations.

17 May 2017

"Bankers of the future will be developers, designers and risk modelling people," says N26 CEO, Valentin Stalf

Banking is like Formula One, says Valentin Stalf, co-founder and CEO of mobile bank N26. This observation came a day after Valentin returned from the famous Monza race track north of Milan in Italy, where N26 was invited as the Fast Companies Series partner by British Formula One racing team, Manor Racing. “Of course, it was very cool to see our logo there, but when you are on the grid and in the pit lane, you also realise Formula 1 is a big myth,” he says. “Just like banking, people think it is really complex. When you get closer to the action, you realise it is a group of normal people working on cars. We have debunked the myth that banking is very complex.” We chatted to Valentin about the practical steps an entrepreneur needs to take to turn a brilliant idea into a thriving business.

12 May 2017

CFOs must be open to frank conversations about race and transformation

Hosted by globally renowned public speaker, venture capitalist and entrepreneur Vusi Thembekwayo, yesterday’s CFO master class sought to bring to light the uncomfortable issues about inequality, the real impact of BEE and the prejudices that business leaders still have – be they white or black. Vusi opened the session with some chilling words, saying that one of the greatest lies told about South Africa is that the country had a peaceful transition to a democratic state.

20 April 2017

Sustainability is key: WATCH SAICA CEO Terence Nombembe at #findaba16

CEO of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) Terence Nombembe is one of the captains of industry shaping the accounting profession and has been a champion of the Finance Indaba since day one. Calling the Indaba a "unifying event that will help us build the nation" in his presentation, the former Auditor General of South Africa outlined his strategy for transformation of SAICA, which is based on effective collaboration and responsible leadership.

19 April 2017

5 cornerstones of investor communication

Consistent, transparent investor communication can encourage ongoing evaluation and accountability, sheds light on new investment opportunities, attracts new investors and bodes well for future growth. Global financial services giant EY has gained some key insights into effective investor communication from discussions with CFOs, investors and executives as part of its Master CFO Collection of studies. Here are five EY tips on gaining investor confidence.

17 February 2017

5 terrible accounting jokes

Accounting is a profession that is plagued by horrendous stereotypes and accountants are never seen to be the life of the party. Thankfully, they tend to have a sense of humour about it. We’ve put together a selection of accounting gags to brighten up your Friday and perhaps give you something better to use as an icebreaker when you’ve got to go up and present those numbers. Please let us put the “extroverted accountant looking at your shoes” line and the polite twittering that goes with it out to pasture.

07 February 2017

How to turn finance turnaround - Coca Cola Beverages FD Walter Leonhardt

In July 2016, ABI merged with Coca-Cola and local bottler SABCO into the new entity Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa – and Walter Leonhardt, ABI financial director, had his transformative work cut out for him once again. In this interview, we speak to Walter about what it takes to establish a culture of continuous improvement, the innovative ways his ABI finance team overcame its challenges and the secret ingredients of a prize-winning leader.

21 November 2016

Like giving birth! MiX Telematics CFO Megan Pydigadu about the NYSE listing

Three years ago, MiX Telematics decided their JSE listing was nice but that what would really boost the fleet and mobile asset management solutions firm was a New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) listing. CFO Megan Pydigadu, nominated for the CFO Awards in both 2014 and 2015, describes the listing process as a roller coaster ride. In this exclusive article, Megan shares a number of important lessons for companies that are considering going to New York.

15 November 2016

The Woolworths watershed: Reeza Isaacs, CFO of the Year 2016

“Setting a target, being clear about it and measuring it are some of the key ingredients for my success,” says Reeza Isaacs, group finance director at Woolworths, who was elected CFO of the Year 2016 at the CFO Awards on 12 May. Reeza talks to us about his adventures in Australia, acquiring a new brand, his passion for transformation, and changing the mindset of the business to focus on balance sheet and return on capital.

04 November 2016

Women and success: Roy Clark chats to top CFOs Mary Vilakazi and Jo Pohl - #findaba16

Two vibrant women, Jo Pohl and Mary Vilakazi, whose dynamism and energy radiates throughout the room, sat down with Roy Clark from Clarkhouse Human Capital and discussed their views on women and success. To say it was inspiring is an understatement – these two women shared such powerful messages that even the most astute and experienced business person would walk away with a burning passion to succeed.

14 October 2016

Let's get personal: Graeme Codrington on the renaissance of business in a digital age - #findaba16

“Students of the future are often students of history,” Futurist Graeme Codrington told attendants of the inaugural Finance Indaba Africa 2016, during his presentation on 14 October 2016. They study moments of change and disruption in history to understand what underlies huge disruption in our present age. Graeme – an international speaker, consultant, and best-selling author who has built a career out of preparing companies for change – believes that the echoes of the past, the ones that were present at the last major social renaissance, are present in the world today, and companies fail to heed them at their peril.

14 October 2016

Take lessons and inspiration #findaba16 back to work: SAICA CEO Terence Nombembe

"Let's take the lessons and the inspiration from the Finance Indaba Africa with us and use it in our daily jobs," said SAICA CEO Terence Nombembe at the opening of day 2 of #findaba16. In an impassioned plea, he called on finance professionals to start contributing more to the future of South Africa, listing several practical steps for CA(SA)s and other finance professionals. "All of us need to be courageous enough."

12 October 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Cellulant is all about transforming Africa

"FinTech is completely revolutionising the speed, the scale and the cost of getting services to the people. This is transformational for Africa – and it is this transformation that drives Cellulant to continue realising this for millions of consumers and thousands of businesses," says Ken Njoroge, Group CEO of Cellulant, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

11 October 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Meniga brings banks and clients closer together

"A single platform can become the main source of information for all digital channels, not only enabling banks and other financial institutions to offer their clients an engaging experience, but also solving simple problems related to the integration of data and reducing infrastructure costs," says Jakub Piotrowski, CRO and Head of Customer Engagement at Meniga, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

04 October 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: ACTSA champions treasury management

"Key to the CFO’s success is having a reliable “wingman” in the form of the Corporate Treasurer, who provides support in not only managing financial variable risks, ensuring access to and supplying liquidity to business operations, but also in identifying, assessing and preparing for potential threats to business liquidity which may not be patently obvious and are difficult to identify when part of the myriad of issues the CFO is contending with," says Nigel Grey, chairman of the Association of Corporate Treasurers of Southern Africa (ACTSA), a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

03 October 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Clean up your audits with the Auditor-General of SA

“We’ve always defined our service offering as audit and state of the nation type reports, but over the past five years, we’ve engaged with CFOs and accounting officers very proactively, especially around the basics of internal control that we believe can move them in the right direction," says Jan van Schalkwyk, corporate executive at the Auditor-General of SA, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

03 October 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: W.Consulting is your CPD partner

"Accounting professionals specifically, and finance professionals more generally, are faced with ever-evolving challenges arising from the expectation to remain abreast of standards and global best practices. Our role is to provide training opportunities that are flexible, affordable, relevant and of high quality," says Raymond Chamboko, director at W.Consulting, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

29 September 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Bytes gets you ahead of the game

"Kronos WM applications are crucial in enabling greater visibility into labour activities for the purposes of effectively managing and maximizing worker productivity, controlling labour costs, tracking operational tasks and minimizing compliance risks," says Yolanda Krajnc, Sales Manager of Bytes Systems Integration, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

27 September 2016

Sibanye Gold CFO Charl Keyter talks risks and results

Charl Keyter was first introduced to mining as a child, when he used to visit the Gold Fields operations with his dad’s cousin. He was fascinated. “The atmosphere on the mines in those days was almost holiday-like,” he recalls. “Maybe because we only ever spent a day or a week there, every so often, but the facilities and the people living in the community, the activities they did with the kids, there was always this great atmosphere.”

17 September 2016

KPMG Africa Banking survey shows customers want more from their banks

KPMG has released its latest Africa Banking Industry Customer Satisfaction Survey, which has revealed that customers are still unsatisfied about financial stability, and are seeking more from their banks than what they’re currently getting, especially as far as service, innovation and convenience are concerned. Pierre Fourie (pictured), KPMG Partner in Financial Services, says it is imperative to appreciate the individual customer. He said:

16 September 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Deloitte is your full-suite partner

"CFOs tend to think of the Deloitte business as providing audit, assurance and tax services, but we also have a strong human capital consulting business and a risk advisory business with a strong capacity around cyber, general risk management and forensics," says Kevin Black, Executive Partner for Clients & Industries at Deloitte South Africa, a platinum partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

15 September 2016

Disrupt, or be disrupted - CFOs discuss digital transformation

“By show of hands, how many people in the room have begun a digital transformation project in the last 12 months?” CFO South Africa MD Graham Fehrsen asked the crowd during his welcoming at the first Johannesburg breakfast event hosted by CFO South Africa on 15 September 2016. Virtually every attendant raised their hands. “So everybody is here to discover why it is not working or how to improve the ROI,” he joked to appreciative chuckles.

15 September 2016

Finance Indaba 2016: Creditinfo is a data-driven solutions pioneer

"Credit bureaus have always played an important role within the financial sector providing information, solutions and services that ensure that creditors have the information and technology needed to make informed decisions." says Agata Szydlowska, Head of Financial Inclusion and CRB Awareness at Credit Info, a gold partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

14 September 2016

The fastest ROI you can get - Document Management Automation

"Need to know what your staff or suppliers are doing with your money? Want a dramatic improvement in cashflow, debtors and creditors management? We will share ideas and tools to gain visibility, improve cash flow and dramatically reduce the risks of e-fraud," says ROI specialist Johan Potgieter of Business Harmony, a silver partner at the Finance Indaba Africa 2016 on 13 and 14 October 2016 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

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Company profile

Sage (FTSE: SGE) is the global market leader for technology that helps businesses of all sizes manage everything from money to people – whether they’re a start-up, scale-up or enterprise. We do this through Sage Business Cloud - the one and only business management solution that customers will ever need, comprising Accounting, Financials, Enterprise Management, People & Payroll and Payments & Banking. 

Our mission is to free business builders from the burden of admin, so they can spend more time doing what they love – and we do that every day for three million customers across 23 countries, through our 13 000 colleagues and a network of accountants and partners. We are committed to doing business the right way and giving back to our communities through Sage Foundation.

Address: 6th Floor, Gateway West 22 Magwa Crescent Waterfall 5-lr Midrand

Phone: +27 (0)11 304 1000

Website: www.sage.com/za