Junior John Ngulube. Picture: MARTIN RHODES
Junior John Ngulube. Picture: MARTIN RHODES

SANLAM has created a new business cluster known as Sanlam Corporate that will be headed by the former CEO of Munich Re sub-Saharan Africa, Junior John Ngulube.

The appointment deepens black leadership in Sanlam’s executive committee and the cluster. Former CEO Johan van Zyl has returned to Sanlam as a nonexecutive director representing Ubuntu-Botho, the insurer’s black empowerment partner led by businessman Patrice Motsepe.

His return fuels speculation that he is scheduled to be announced as leader of African Rainbow Capital, a subsidiary of Ubuntu-Botho that is expected to work in partnership with Sanlam in the next 10 years.

African Rainbow Capital and Sanlam have already acquired Indwe Broker Holdings, one of the biggest SA-based short-term insurance brokers. More deals between the two are expected.

The creation of Sanlam Corporate raises questions as to whether it is one of the businesses that Ubuntu-Botho will look to invest in directly at the Cape-based insurer. It has been hinted at that Sanlam could sell 30%-50% of some of its businesses to Ubuntu-Botho.

Head of the new Sanlam Corporate business Mr Ngulube has been CEO of the Munich Re sub-Saharan Africa operations since 2007 and has been with Munich Re for 28 years.

"Junior brings a wealth of experience in financial services which he gained at one of the largest reinsurance companies in Africa. He has great insurance expertise in SA and the rest of Africa," Sanlam Group CEO Ian Kirk said.

The company said the newly created Sanlam Corporate would support "the delivery of an enhanced and integrated offering" to corporate clients.

It would be in a position to offer companies and their employees a holistic corporate solution including life insurance, general insurance, investments, health insurance, retirement, financial planning and advice.

The appointment of Mr Ngulube will increase Sanlam’s executive committee to 11.

The other members are group CEO Mr Kirk, Themba Gamedze, Kobus Möller, Temba Mvusi, Hubert Brody, Heinie Werth, Yegs Ramiah, Lize Lambrechts, Anton Gildenhuys, and Robert Roux.