Career Moves

YeboYethu appoints Thabo Mokgatlha as chairman

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Vodacom’s black economic empowerment (BEE) scheme, YeboYethu, has appointed Thabo Mokgatlha as chairman to replace Zarina Bassa, who will step down later this year.

The scheme announced the board changes to shareholders yesterday, saying Bassa has indicated her intention to step down from the scheme’s board with effect from the next annual general meeting, scheduled for 27 July.

Mokgatlha is CEO of Baphalane Ba Mantserre Investment Holdings and serves as a non-executive director on various other boards and was previously head of business and treasury of the Royal Bafokeng Nation.

“The board wishes to extend its sincere gratitude to Zarina for 13 years of dedication to ensuring the shareholders of YeboYethu derived value from the company’s investment in Vodacom. Zarina has fulfilled the role of chairman since her appointment to the board in June 2008 and she oversaw the listing of the company on the JSE during 2016,” reads the statement from YeboYethu.

“In 2018, Zarina was instrumental in the implementation of the new broad-based black economic empowerment ownership transaction in terms of which the company acquired 6.23% shareholding in Vodacom Group.”

Additionally, shareholders were advised the YeboYethu board has appointed Sameera Khan as company secretary with effect from 5 March.

Khan, who was appointed as Vodacom group company secretary in September 2018, resigned from the mobile operator yesterday.

Changes to the YeboYethu board come as the empowerment scheme is looking for 12 000 shareholders whose R73 million in unclaimed dividends remain locked up in the company’s bank.

The unclaimed dividends date back to 2014, with the largest amounts relating to the special dividend that was declared in 2018.

YeboYethu says attempts to trace the 12 000 shareholders through a third-party have been unsuccessful.

Vodacom’s R7.5 billion BEE transaction was established in 2008 and was touted as the largest such deal to date in the telecommunications sector.

The empowerment transaction benefitted a significant number of black investors and close to 8 500 current and past employees.

YeboYethu issued 14.4 million YeboYethu ordinary shares at R25 each and as a result of the public offer, approximately 102 000 qualifying black investors bought a stake in Vodacom SA.

Through a new BEE deal concluded in June 2018, YeboYethu now holds a 6.23% stake in Vodacom Group worth R13.4 billion.

The deal structure involved the coming together of the combined interests of Vodacom’s existing BEE partners (Royal Bafokeng Holdings, Thebe Investment Corporation and YeboYethu) with a newly formed employee stock ownership plan.

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