Rob Rose Editor: Financial Mail

The corporate graveyard is crowded with the newly built headstones of iconic companies that built the face of SA: Basil Read, Esor and now Group Five. Others are on life support: Aveng clocked up an operating loss of R484m for the six months to December and even the hitherto bulletproof WBHO made a R23m operating loss for that same period. Khathutshelo "K2" Mapasa, the CEO of Basil Read (now in business rescue), says the situation is now so bad that the government must intervene to bail out the sector. "Look, I agree with the capitalist philosophy of creative destruction, that things have to fail. But the thing is, at Basil Read, I’ve realised we [affect] far more than just shareholders. This isn’t about one company," he says. At last count, the industry employed 618,000 people — more than the entire mining industry in this country. PODCAST: How the construction industry contributed to its own demise. Subscribe: iono.fm | Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Pocket Cast | Player.fm So Mapasa ...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.



Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now