The Financial Mail cover story (April 20-26) asked if CEO Thabo Dloti could turn Liberty around. Now we will never know. Dloti has quit. At the life insurer’s mid-May board meeting it was clear that Dloti’s strategy did not have the support of the directors. Unusually, instead of announcing that he would be spending more time with his family, Dloti was allowed to write an explanation for his departure in Liberty’s official press release. He said there was a difference of opinion with the board on the immediate focus of the company at a time when the organisation is facing tough operational and environmental challenges. "Alignment among key stakeholders is imperative to ensure the effective execution of the strategy," he says in his best management jargon. Liberty faces tighter margins, reduced market share and increased competition, most recently from the new Investec Life. Dloti had taken action to close underperforming units such as the Own Your Life loyalty programme, direct insu...

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