CAPITEC Bank’s share price took an almost 3 percent nosedive yesterday morning after it announced that its co-founder, chief financial officer and financial director, André du Plessis, would step down after 22 years with the group.
After the news at 7.30am, the share hit a low of R210.021, recovering later in the day to close at R216.176.
The digital bank, which boasts 15 million clients, said Du Plessis would retire effectively in June. Grant Hardy, currently the group services financial head at Capitec, will succeed Du Plessis in July.
Du Plessis was part of a team that guided the firm to successfully challenge the traditional Big Four, Standard Bank, FNB, Nedbank and Absa.
The digital bank has the most expensive listed shares in the banking sector on the JSE. It recently overtook Standard Bank as the JSE’s second-biggest lender by market value.
Established in 2001 by investment holding company PSG and listed on the JSE in 2002, shares in Capitec sit at almost 16.8 million, and by value, with a market capitalisation of R228.41bn.
According to the company, Hardy, a chartered accountant, completed his articles with Deloitte.
“He spent eight years in the UK banking industry, before returning to South Africa and joining Capitec Bank in 2015.
“He has fulfilled various financial management roles at Capitec Bank, and in 2019 he occupied a development seat on Exco, allowing him to gain extensive insight into the group,” the bank said.
In his current role, he is responsible for budgeting and forecasting, financial modelling and treasury functions, to mention a few.
Additionally, in 2018, he co-led the due diligence for the acquisition of the Mercantile group with Du Plessis, the company said in a statement.
The company said Hardy was shortlisted for the role over the past four years. “André worked closely with the candidate successors to ensure that they gain appropriate depth of insight into the Capitec group,” said the bank.
Hardy would be working together with Du Plessis in the next six months to ensure a seamless transition, and a detailed handover plan was developed, the company said.
“The board is pleased with Hardy’s appointment as Du Plessis’ successor and is confident that his experience and intimate knowledge of the group will support the continued growth of Capitec,” it said.
Capitec said talent management and succession planning form an integral part of broader risk management at the bank. It said it made efforts in developing its employees, as most of its retired co-founders were replaced by individuals from within the bank.
In December, the bank announced that it was considering an R1 billion broad-based black economic empowerment deal for its employees. This was highlighted when the bank was issuing a trading update forecasting higher annual profit.
BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE