Now he aims to use the company’s successful business blueprint to tackle poverty and social inequality.

Who is Temba Mvusi? Mvusi joined Sanlam more than 16 years ago, after catapulting his way through the financial sector ranks. Of the belief that BBBEE is the cornerstone of social advancement, he played an integral role in the Ubuntu-Botho deal – a partnership between Sanlam and Patrice Motsepe – which has created more than R16 billion in value for black shareholders.

How did growing up in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth, affect your career path? I had a great childhood. My mother was a nurse and my father was a teacher at the school I attended. In retrospect, I didn’t leverage this privilege as much as I should have. I had a fantastic Afrikaans teacher who had a great way of getting us to communicate effectively. This was a really valuable skill once I began working at Sanlam.

Describe your experiences when you first started working at the white-dominated company. I never found it difficult because I am a more practical than emotional person. I started at Sanlam at a senior level, with the aim of broadening the company’s horizons and focusing on new markets, so great strides were made to accommodate me.