South Africans get special treatment in Davos

ARM Chairperson Patrice Motsepe will attend the WEF in Davos this year.
ARM Chairperson Patrice Motsepe will attend the WEF in Davos this year.

Cape Town - For all the time I have attended the World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos, which starts on Wednesday, South Africa has punched way above its weight.

Most years the country’s delegation is led by the president with half a dozen cabinet ministers in tow. And as you can see from the list of the 2015 participants, business attendees read like a Who’s Who of South African business.

The agenda, too, often has a strong South African favour.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu has long been among the special attractions while in recent years Charlize Theron and Yvonne Chaka-Chaka have both received the WEF’s prestigious Crystal Award, following in the footsteps of Anand Singh.

You’ll also find WEF Founder Klaus Schwab attending at least one of the South African functions in Davos and he makes a biennial trip to Cape Town, which hosts the Forum’s Africa Summit every alternate year.

South African business leaders attending Davos:

Anne Shongwe, CEO of Afroes Transformational Games
Patrice Motsepe, Chairperson of ARM
Andre Wilkens, Director of ARM
Maria Ramos, CEO of Barclays Africa
Alec Hogg, Editor of Biznews
Charlotte Maponya, Chairperson of Brand SA
Thero Setiloane, CEO of Business Leadership SA
Dhananjayan Sriskandarajah, SG of Civicus
Bronwyn Nielsen, Director of CNBC Africa
Patrick Dlamini, CEO of Development Bank
Jabulani Moleketi, Chairperson of Development Bank
Charles Kie, Executive of Ecobank SA
Laurie Dippenaar, Chairperson of FirstRand
Geofrey Qhena, CEO of IDC
Ellis Mnyandu, Executive of Independent Media
Anton du Plessis, MD of  the Institute for Security Studies
Fani Titi, Chairperson of Investec
Hendrik du Toit, CEO of Investec Asset Management
Nku Nyembezi-Heita, Chairperson of JSE Ltd
Thabo Dloti, CEO of Liberty Holdings
Ben Magara, CEO of Lonmin
Trevor Ncube, Deputy Chairman of Mail & Guardian
Frank Beadle de Palomo, CEO of mothers2mothers
Koos Bekker, Chairperson of Naspers
Mike Brown, CEO of Nedbank
Ralph Mupita, Director of Old Mutual
Paul Hanratty, COO of Old Mutual
Julian Roberts, CEO of Old Mutual
Gail Klintoworth, Director of Old Mutual
Ian Goldin, Professor at Oxford University
Kgosi Leruo Molotlegi, Chairperson of Royal Bafokeng
Mark Bowman, MD of SABMiller SA
David Constable, CEO of Sasol
Mandla Gantsho Chairperson Sasol
Iqbal Survé, Chairperson of Sekunjalo
Duncan Luke, Founder of SPONSORME Trust
Sim Tshabalala, CEO of Standard Bank
Sipho Maseko, CEO of Telkom
Jabu Mabuza, Chairperson of Telkom
Peter H. Staude, CEO of Tongaat Hulett
Brian Molefe, CEO of Transnet
Linda Mabaso, Chairperson of Transnet
Max Price Vice, Chancellor at UCT
Zeblon Vilakazi, Vice Chancellor at Wits University

* This is first appeared in the Biznews/BrightRock World Economic Forum starter pack, A Veterans Guide to Surviving Davos.

* For more in-depth business news, visit or simply sign up for the daily newsletter.

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