Living in interesting times

2018-01-30 06:00
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Gulshan Khan, AFP)

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Gulshan Khan, AFP)

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A Chinese curse that expresses the wish that you may “live in interesting times” is certainly apt at the start of 2018. While we live through seismic political upheaval at home, so too is overseas enormous geopolitical change taking place.

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa recently visited Davos with a farm-fresh Eskom board to show for his broader intentions for the state of governance, which certainly constituted a positive start, but there is a great deal yet to be fixed.

The US president has a unique and controversial style, but beyond the petty controversies, change is happening in how the US engages with the world, some of which will have consequences for investors. So too across the pond, where, despite the British economy appearing to be in increasingly good shape, the full impact of Brexit has yet to be fully understood for both the EU and the UK. Equally, China’s increasing economic influence is not abating.

This all makes for a challenging environment for asset managers.

In this video, the Managing Director of Old Mutual’s asset management business Khaya Gobodo outlines the bigger challenges he foresees this year – including the firm’s imminent return to a JSE listing – as well as the way in which Old Mutual builds resilience into its business in the face of shocks, such as the Steinhoff affair.


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