Youth employment, entrepreneurship and the use of technology to promote inclusive growth will be examined at SA’s biggest board meeting:  the Directors Event. 

Now in its fourth year, the Directors Event is presented by the Sunday Times in association with JSE-listed financial services group MMI Holdings, a holding company for a diverse portfolio of companies including Momentum and Metropolitan. MMI is supported by partners Mancosa (GSB), the Institute of Directors (IoD SA), and Greymatter & Finch. The Sunday Times, SA’s best-selling weekend newspaper and part of Tiso Blackstar’s respected media stable, delivers a focused discussion programme that attracts participation from the country’s most prominent business and government leaders and an audience of 300 “board member” delegates.

During their round-table discussions the perspectives of government will be presented by science & technology minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, higher education & training minister Naledi Pandor and Enoch Godongwana, chair  of the ANC subcommittee on economic transformation.

Nontokozo Madonsela, chief marketing officer at MMI Holdings, says: “Through our portfolio of companies as well as our investments in communities, MMI serves a broad range of people and businesses in our society. We are therefore intensely aware of the role we must play in improving the lives of all South Africans. We are heeding the president’s call to lend a hand in addressing our challenges. We are saying #CountUsIn. The Directors Event discussions go to the heart of the issues we face as a nation. We believe this platform creates a space where constructive dialogue between the public and private sectors can take place with the aim of putting forward concrete solutions that can contribute positively to improving the socio-economic conditions of our country.”

The Directors Event programme is tailored for corporates, SMEs, educators and nonprofit organisations that are serious about turning SA’s socio-economic crisis around.

Three round-table discussions will be presented.

How can we use technology to promote inclusive growth in SA?

Aki Anastasiou will be moderating a conversation about the application of technology to promote inclusive growth. Technology not only has the potential to unlock SA’s economic growth but also allows for inclusive growth through large-scale infrastructural advancements that place ICT at their core. Inclusive growth is about more than just breaking the cycle of poverty; it’s about creating opportunities for those in lower socio-economic sectors to generate wealth. Anastasiou will be joined by Barbara Mallinson (founder & CEO, Obami), Timothy Willis (CFO, Aerobotics), Kubayi-Ngubane, Suveer Ramdhani (chief development officer, Seacom) and Duduzile Mkhwanazi (CEO, Project Isizwe).

Youth employment and entrepreneurship – creating jobs for the future

A staggering 67.4% of people under the age of 25 are unemployed, adding to a total of more than 14.6m jobless persons in the country. And while more than 700,000 matriculants will graduate this year, more than half of them have no job prospects. Against this backdrop, Ayabonga Cawe will be moderating a discussion on youth employment and entrepreneurship, and will be joined by Naadiya Moosajee (co-founder, WomHub), Zachariah George (co-founder & chief investment officer, Startupbootcamp Africa), Pandor, Jayshree Naidoo (CEO, Youth Innovation Entrepreneurship Design Institute), and Prof Barry Dwolatzky (director, Jo’burg Centre for Software Engineering, Wits University).

SA politics and the economy – where do we stand now, and where are we headed?

Much has changed since Cyril Ramaphosa emerged as the new leader of the ANC in late 2017 and was sworn in as president of the Republic in February 2018. But where do we stand now, and where are we headed with these political changes? And what impact can we expect in the economy? Siki Mgabadeli will discuss these issues alongside Ralph Mathekga (political analyst), Thabi Leoka (economic strategist), Busisiwe Mavuso (CEO, Business Leadership SA), Godongwana and Peter Major (director mining, Cadiz Corporate Solutions).

The opening remarks will be delivered by Hillie Meyer (group CEO, MMI Holdings), while Jabu Mabuza (chair, Business Leadership SA) will deliver the chairman’s report. Dan Moyane (head: group communications & CSI at MMI Holdings) is the MC for the Directors Event.

The keynote speaker will be announced in the coming weeks.  Keynote speakers from previous years have included high-profile business leaders such as Caroline Galvan (lead economist & editor: Africa Competitiveness Report for the World Economic Forum), and former deputy minister of finance Mcebisi Jonas.

The big take-out

The Directors Event is taking place at the Sandton Convention Centre on June 8 2018.  To view the 2018 agenda or speaker profiles, or to book tickets, go to www.thedirectorsevent.co.za