Santam appoints new chairperson

03 June 2010 Santam
Vusi Khanyile

Vusi Khanyile

South Africa’s leading short term insurer, Santam, is pleased to announce the appointment of Vusi Khanyile as its chairperson replacing Desmond Smith.

Khanyile joined the Santam board on 15 April 2010. Khanyile a graduate of the Birmingham University, started his career in the finance division of Anglo American Corporation and ran his own finance company before taking up the role of Special Assistant to the Vice Chancellor at the University of Cape Town, where he later became the Deputy Registrar.

He also headed up the finance department of the African National Congress between 1990 and 1992 and is the current Chairman and founding Chief Executive Officer of Thebe Investment Corporation.

Khanyile has an interest in community development programmes specifically in the education and civic sectors. “I look forward to being involved with Santam, a highly respected risk management partner in the commercial, corporate and personal insurance market,” says Khanyile.

Ian Kirk Chief Executive of Santam says he is pleased with the appointment of Khanyile. “I look forward to the contribution Vusi will make to the company over the next few years. With his experience and track record in the industry, he is certainly a huge asset to the company.”

Desmond Smith, who leaves Santam to chair Sanlam’s board adds: “I have no doubt that the groundwork of the past years will continue to bear fruit for many years to come during Vusi’s tenure.”

At the same board meeting an operational update for the year to date was released:

Overall underwriting conditions remain satisfactory at acceptable margins after the improvement experienced in the second half of 2009. The absence of multiple large industrial claims in the corporate business unit to date as well as an improvement in the portfolio management business saw a welcome respite in these areas, mainly due to several initiatives to address underwriting and claims activities. Commercial property claims increased as a result of a higher frequency of fire claims as well as flooding claims following the higher than normal summer rainfall in the northern parts of the country. Rates across the board remain soft and premium growth is expected to be in line with the overall industry experience.

Performance of the investment portfolio was in line with the equity market movements but the investment result has been positively impacted by the accounting treatment of the derivative fence structure. Interest rate returns, albeit lower than last year, continue to contribute positively to income. The group’s solvency margin remains at the top end of the target range of 35% to 45%.

Headline earnings continue to be susceptible to the inherent volatility of underwriting and investment activities.

The next set of results will be the interim results for 2010 to be published on 1 September 2010.

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