Chiamaka Ihekwoaba

Chiamaka Ihekwoaba

Basani Maluleke Shatters The Glass Ceiling, Set to Become First Black Female Bank C.E.O in South Africa

South Africa’s African Bank, is to witness its first female black bank C.E.O in the person of Basani Maluleke, as she sets to succeed African Bank CEO, Brian Riley come March 2018.

A perfect blend of law, banking and finance and general management, Maluleke has been able to build a solid foundation in deal making from her career starting point Edward Nathan.

Moving further, in 2005, she joined Rand Merchant Bank and was nominated for a national deal maker of the year award after being a member of the team that advised, structured and implemented a R25 billion transaction at Sasol.

Maluleke holds a Bachelor of commerce majoring in accounting and Bachelor of laws, both from Cape town. In 2011, she attained an MBA in finance, international business, strategy and general management from the United States Kellog school of Management.

As a head of First National Bank (FNB) private clients, she successfully formulated, positioned the unit’s growth strategy and restructured the banking business with highly developed banking and investment needs to match high net worth clients.
Never one to shy away from responsibility, Maluleke was a huge player in a R16 million transaction that involved unbundling of Kumba Iron Ore from Exxaro resources as well as the restructuring of Exarro resources.

The nomination as CEO is as exciting as it is surprising for the 40 year old attorney, who had not envisaged it the way South Africa has.

She began climbing the good bank’s (African Bank) success ladder in 2015 when she joined the bank’s management board. In July 2017, she took steps further with her executive director appointment.

The good bank was placed in curatorship in 2014 after it was sunk by an explosion in bad debt and a funding crunch. It was recapitalized to the tune of R10bn by a consortium of local lenders, although according to Riley the process of righting it has taken long than expected.

African bank recently dismissed 636 employees, 515 of whom were let go under a voluntary severance plan which cost the bank R60 million as against its expected yearly savings of R50 million.

South African Reserve Bank is required to formally approve Maluleke’s nomination. Although there is a listing, there is still alot to be done says Maluleke. “I have been part of the creation of the strategy, I like the business, I understand it and I want to make a meaningful contribution”.