BACKSTORY: Moshe Capital’s Kay Asare-Bediako
We question Kay Asare-Bediako, executive director at Moshe Capital
What was your first job?
Straight after matric I sold paintballing tickets on the streets of London — I was on a working holiday for a couple of months. It was an enticing proposition because the commission was 20%. I sold two tickets in three days. I was terrible. Needless to say, I made a firm decision at that point to not be a salesperson.
How much was your first pay cheque, and how did you spend it?
I took home R6,000. There wasn’t much left after paying for rent, a car instalment and food. However, the little I had left was spent on clothes.
What was the one thing you wish somebody had told you when you were starting out?
Pressure is a privilege. It has been in the moments following great pressure that my life has taken giant leaps forward.
How would you fix Eskom?
I would privatise Eskom as a start. SA has privatised many state-owned enterprises, such as Telkom and Sasol, with positive results for the economy and job creation.
What is your biggest regret?
Not travelling more when I was younger. I spent my money paying for expensive cars.
What’s your one top tip for doing a deal?
Dealmaking is a complex and integrated process; it’s critical that the team is technically strong.
What’s the most interesting thing about you that people don’t know?
I wanted to study to be a theatre actress when I was in matric.
What has been your worst purchase?
My slick BMW 3 Series coupé with 19-inch rims. I bought that in 2012. That car was a machine but it guzzled petrol and the maintenance was a nightmare. It cost me a lot of money.
What is the one investment you wish you had made, or made earlier?
Bought more shares in Naspers.
Is there such a thing as enough money and, if so, how much is it?
I don’t believe there is. If you use money as an instrument to help humanity, how can there ever be enough?
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
What is something you would go back and tell your younger self that would impress her?
You’re going to grow up to own a successful business and make something out of nothing.
Was there ever a point at which you wanted to trade it all in for a different career? And, if so, what would that career be?
Yes. When I’m suffering from deal fatigue I have fantasies of being a home executive.
Do you have a single favourite joke you tell people? What is it?
What’s blue and white and kills you when it falls out of a tree? A fridge wearing a denim jacket.
If you were president, what would you change tomorrow?
Together with the judiciary, I would impose stricter punishment on people found guilty of gender-based violence.