Listed property moves towards change

Posted On Thursday, 09 December 2004 02:00 Published by eProp Commercial Property News
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Important that new black and female directors play a meaningful role, says property player

Marius MullerSA's listed property sector is taking the first steps towards transformation and the empowerment of women.

In October this year Business Day reported that the listed property sector had been very much in white male hands at the start of the year.

Since then a number of funds have appointed women and black people as independent nonexecutive directors.

According to an MBA thesis researched at the beginning of the year by property player Marius Muller, an executive director of the Kagiso Property Group, out of 138 directors on the boards of 14 listed property companies studied, only two were black and three female.

Muller said in October that although financial disclosure in the listed property sector met legislative requirements, transformation performances were "dismal". There were no black women on the boards of the listed property companies he studied.

Muller's research also found that investors' greatest concern regarding corporate governance in the listed property sector was related to the independence of the board of directors and the subcommittees of the board.

In recent months a number of listed property funds have made appointments in line with transformation and empowerment of women. These include Metboard Properties, Resilient Property Income Fund, Pangbourne Properties and Redefine Income Fund.

In September Metboard said businessman Herman Mashaba, founder of Black Like Me and executive chairman of Leswikeng Minerals, had been appointed as a nonexecutive director .

Redefine recently appointed experienced property players Liliane Barnard and Diana Perton to its board as independent nonexecutive directors.

Last week Pangbourne announced it had appointed two black women to its board as independent nonexecutive directors: Nana Ngobese, currently CEO and a director of AkhaTech, and Nene Molefi, currently MD and owner of Mandate Molefi Human Resource Consultants.

Resilient Property Fund, which already had a black economic empowerment component to it when it listed on the JSE Securities Exchange SA in July 2002, announced on Friday that Phumelele Msweli had been appointed as a nonexecutive director. Resilient's independent nonexecutive chairman is Archie Nkonyeni, while JJ Njeke, MD of Kagiso Trust Investments, is a nonexecutive director.

Capital Property Fund also has black representation at executive director level with Thando Sishuba and Modise Gabotlhaelwe having joined the board in June. Cyril Ramaphosa is nonexecutive chairman of Capital.

Muller says it is important that these new directors play a meaningful role on the boards.

"I think these changes represent a small step, but a step in the right direction," he says.

Last modified on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 11:49

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