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Intensified competition and growth of SME businesses drive changes in Employee Benefits industry

11 June 2007 Sanlam Employee Benefits

In anticipation of further growth in the small and medium business sector and a considerable transformation of South Africas social security system, Sanlam Employee Benefits (SEB), one of the country's leading providers of customised employee benefits solutions, has altered its business structure.  SEB has also added some industry heavyweights to enable it to better compete and prepare for future changes in the retirement fund industry.

According to Robert Roux, acting CEO of SEB and COO of Sanlam Investments: "As an integral part of a diversified financial services company,  SEB has introduced  specialised expertise and refined its strategic focus to better service a wider array of clients.  Our new organisational structure will also take advantage of the distribution and administration capabilities across the Sanlam Group to drive further growth and more capital efficiency." 

Effective immediately, SEB will be structured around three units:

Sanlam Group Risk: Headed by Paul Myeza, a new addition to the SEB team, the unit will focus on group risk underwriting businesses and growing market share through product innovation and specialised distribution.
Sanlam Umbrella Fund: Headed by David Gluckman, formerly of Simeka Consultants and Actuaries, the unit will incorporate the Wizard Universal Umbrella Fund and the Sanlam Umbrella Fund Administrators (SUFA).  It will offer specialised offerings as part of a simplified product set to meet the needs of the full spectrum employer groups.
Coris Capital: Under the leadership of Johan Potgieter, this unit will handle the retirement fund administration function across the Sanlam Group of companies.  The business is currently in the process of migrating all SEB retirement funds to their highly rated system.

In order to improve return on equity and meet client expectations, SEBs annuity and smoothed bonus businesses have been transferred to the Sanlam Specialised Solutions team of Sanlam Investments headed up by Dawie de Villiers.

"These changes ensure more focus, responsibility and accountability within each of SEB's units and introduces more breadth and depth of skills to effectively service the needs of South African employers and their employees," added Roux.  "Many opportunities exist within the sector and this new structure strongly positions us to deliver more customised solutions, particularly in the areas of umbrella funds and risk underwriting."

Related to the new SEB structure, Sanlam Investments has also acquired 100 percent of Simeka Employee Benefits Consulting (previously Sanlam Consultants & Actuaries), a business offering independent actuarial and consulting services.  Headed by Gawie du Toit, it will service Sanlams current institutional clients and allow Sanlam Investments to offer a competitive range of actuarial and consulting services.

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