Press release

– Celebrating an exceptional year of performance, empowerment and governance awards, Khalid Abdulla, Group CEO of African Equity Empowerment Investments Limited (AEEI), was treated by The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) to the sound of its mystical Kudu horn, as he officially opened the markets this morning.

The blowing of the horn (ringing of the bell) has become somewhat of a tradition, although usually reserved for companies that are being listed on the stock exchange. However, Abdulla and AEEI were accorded the honour by virtue of the fact that the company has shown consistent financial growth over several years, with a particularly impressive trading period in the past 12 months and recognised by its peers with several top awards and consistent financial performance.

As testament to its forward thinking approach, its high standards and its ability to deliver results, AEEI was recently recognised by Empowerdex in its annual benchmark of JSE Listed companies as the Most Empowered Company, the Most Empowered Management Control, listed by the Financial Mail as a Top 10 Performer on the JSE for financial performance and was also ranked by IRAS as the Top Performer for the highest SDTI for governance in the Sector: Financial Services – Other.

Accolades for its proficiency are well deserved. It has increased its current market cap to almost R2 billion from R500 million over the past three years, posted consistent above market year-on-year growth, with a record 53% increase in operating profit, and its Net Asset Value (NAV) increasing by 21% for the year to end August 2016. This is made all the more remarkable when considering the tough economic conditions of the times.

Following its ‘Vision 2020 Vision’ strategy which continues to have a positive impact on the growth progression and operational efficiency of all five divisions of this diversified Investment Company. Consistent performance, coupled with increased brand awareness and recognition, its acquisitions and the value it unlocks in its operations as well as strategic investments (like Saab Grintek Defence, British Telecommunication Services South Africa (Pty) Ltd Pioneer Foods Group Limited and asset management company, Sygnia Limited) is attracting investor interest and growing confidence. The company has also created significant stakeholder value.

As one of South Africa’s leading and most successful black empowered listed companies, Abdulla and his colleagues put their sustained growth, financial success and expanding influence down to a few simple principles; The ability to embrace differences – whether it is experience, outlook or knowledge – observe and truly listen to what is going on around them, not just in business but on the ground, in Communities they come from, and ultimately represent, as well as AEEI’s non-judgemental but openminded approach to business and putting stakeholders first.

This perceptive approach is represented in, and delivered on, by AEEI’s holistic ‘Vision 2020 Vision’ strategy. It is underpinned by the holistic professional capabilities of the management team driven and led by Mr Khalid Abdulla and the organisation’s belief in empowering its staff and one of the key reasons why Abdulla has the honour of opening the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

Thanking the JSE for awarding AEEI the opportunity, Abdulla said: “This is for each member of the incredible AEEI team (management and staff) who all deserve the recognition and without whom we would not be here today. We are excited about what tomorrow holds.” With that, Abdulla took a deep breath and sounded the future.

As several other additional acquisitions in the new 2017 financial year have already been announced – Puleng Technologies and the most recent being the stake it has taken in Headset Solutions – the predicted listing of its food and fishing, and technology businesses, it may well be sooner, rather than later, that Abdulla’s horn blowing talent is once more tested.


The top 4 awards again at the end of release:

1. Top financial performance

2. Top empowered company

3. Top empowered management and management controlled company

4. Top award for corporate governance

Should you wish to interview Mr Khalid Abdulla, please contact: Feroza Petersen Communications and Marketing Cell: 082 801 3919

Following an article in the Cape Argus on Friday 19 February, “Call to fund Ashley Kriel documentary”, Survé Philanthropies responded to the call to complete the film. Action Kommandant Director, Nadine Cloete, met with Dr Iqbal Survé, who expressed his support for this project and pledged the R 75 000 required to do final editing and colour correction required to make it screen ready.

“I am excited that through our media platforms we have been able to spread awareness of stories like this. It is critical to tell the stories of those struggle heroes who so unselfishly gave their lives to gain a democratic South Africa. Ashley Kriel’s history needs to be known by all South Africans and this film will ensure that this is done,” said Dr Survé of Survé Philanthropies, who is also the Executive Chairman of Sekunjalo Investment Holdings and Independent Media.

“I am providing this support, so that Nadine can complete this film in time for Youth Day 2016. Ashley Kriel’s story will inspire young people who will learn from those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedoms that we value today. So many others have responded to the call to complete the film and that is fantastic.”

Cloete said that the journey to complete this film had been a long and arduous one and she was quite overwhelmed by the support she was receiving from Survé Philanthropies and many of Ashley Kriel’s comrades.

“I have been working on this film for five years. I never met Ashley but through working on this film and talking to his family and comrades, I feel a deeper sense of him which I hope is conveyed in the documentary. I am committed to completing it, so that people know who Ashley was and how he sacrificed his young life for an ideal of freedom. I am grateful for the support that Survé Philanthropies has provided to achieve this. The crowdfunding campaign is receiving solid support on social media from Ashley’s comrades, which has been amazing. Any extra funding will contribute to any extra edit time needed, broadcasting rights on archive footage and would go towards the launch and marketing of this documentary, to ensure that it is seen by as many people as possible.”

Michél Assure, Ashley Kriel’s sister, said that the documentary had provided some closure for the family. The family has seen a preview of the film and is excited for it to be released.”

Dr Survé said that Survé Philanthropies has provided support to a number of similar arts projects which have told the stories of struggle icons, including Cold Case: Revisiting Dulcie September, which was showcased at the Baxter Theatre and the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, and Formidabele Vroue, based on the life of the District Six struggle veteran, Cissy Gool.

Issued by:
Awande Dlamini
Sekunjalo Investment Holdings
Mobile: 076 786 4850