BACKSTORY: African Rainbow Capital’s Charmaine Padayachy
We question Charmaine Padayachy, deal executive at African Rainbow Capital
What’s your top tip for doing a deal?
It’s a few things that I believe are intertwined. Collaboration and compromise; the best deals are those where both sides feel like winners and no bridges are burnt.
What was your first job?
I started "working" for pocket money when I was eight, packing and selling fruit and vegetables at the Pretoria fresh produce market with my uncle, who had a stall there. Despite very cold winter mornings on the back of a bakkie to get there, it was a lot of fun being amid the hustle and bustle.
What is the one investment you wish you had made, or made earlier?
I lived in London for a few years and wish I’d bought an apartment there. Back then it was a fraction of the price of today. But I travelled a lot, so no regrets.
How much was your first pay cheque, and how did you spend it?
It was around R15,000 a month pre-tax. I was still living at home so started paying my dad back for the car he bought me to get to work. Luckily, it didn’t take too long as the car was very, very old. I invested in a Sanlam endowment policy, as well as clothes and shoe shopping! There wasn’t much left …
What do you wish somebody had told you when you were starting out?
To let go much faster of the things you can’t control. And it is virtually impossible to please everyone.
If you could fix only one thing in SA, what would it be?
For me it’s health care. It’s heartbreaking to know there are parents who can’t access free and quality health care for their children, either timeously or at all.
What’s the most interesting thing about you that people don’t know?
I am absolutely addicted to Scandi noir crime investigative series. There is no better way to spend an evening — the gorier, the better. Give me a romcom and you will kill my soul. And I love quiz games. Growing up, I was a demon at Cluedo and Trivial Pursuit. Go figure!
The hardest life lesson you’ve learnt so far?
Never make a decision to emigrate before spending some time in the country you’re going to first.
If you were President Cyril Ramaphosa, what would you change, or do, tomorrow?
Get us as many of the Covid vaccines as possible, as soon as possible, even if it means reaching out to the private sector. Without this as an urgent priority, we remain a ticking time bomb as a nation.
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