Imperial has a well-constituted, diverse and active board, with experience and expertise relevant to the group’s strategy and operating context.

Our board provides rigorous oversight underpinned by best practice governance and control processes, and independent interrogation and strategic counsel through a frank and open relationship with executive management teams.

Non-executive
directors

Phumzile Langeni

 (46)

Chairman and Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Remuneration
  • Nomination (Chairman)
  • Asset and liability
  • Social, ethics and sustainability

Qualifications: BCom, BCom (Hons), MCom

Phumzile is a co-founder and executive chairman of Afropulse Group (Pty) Ltd, an unlisted investment and corporate advisory house.

She was appointed by President Ramaphosa as a Special Investment Envoy and serves as the Deputy Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Council on Investments.


Other directorships: Metrofile Holdings, Primedia Holdings, Transaction Capital, Mineworker’s Investment Company

Graham Dempster

 (66)

Lead Independent Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Audit and risk
  • Remuneration
  • Nomination
  • Asset and liability

Qualifications: BCom, CA(SA), Harvard Business School, INSEAD AMP

Graham has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry both in South Africa and internationally. Graham serves as a non-executive director of a number of JSE listed companies.


Other directorships: Long4Life, Motus Holdings Limited, Sun International.

Peter Cooper

 (65)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Audit and risk
  • Asset and liability (Chairman)

Qualifications: BCom (Hons), HDip Tax, CA(SA)

Peter is the immediate past CEO of RMB Holdings Limited (RMH) and Rand Merchant Investment Holdings (RMI). His early career was in the financial services sector, first as a tax consultant and later specialising in corporate and structured finance with UAL Merchant Bank. He joined Rand Merchant Bank in 1992 as a structured finance specialist and transferred to RMB Holdings in 1997, where he was appointed to the board in 1999.


Other directorships: RMH, RMI, Momentum Metropolitan Holdings, Shoprite Holdings

Bridget
Duker

 (41)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Audit and risk
  • Social, ethics and sustainability

Qualifications: BCom (Hons), CA(SA)

Bridget is an experienced executive and proven business leader with a successful record in helping businesses entrench sound financial processes, transformation and governance. She is the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director at Rothschild & Co South Africa. Prior to this she served as Group CFO of Ubuntu-Botho Investments. Bridget started her career at Deloitte where she was an audit partner. In this role, she led multi-disciplinary engagement teams servicing JSE listed clients in geographies spanning Africa, Europe and America.


Other directorships: Motus Holdings Limited, Assupol Holdings Limited and Rothschild & Co (South Africa) Proprietary Limited.

Dirk Reich

 (57)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Asset and liability

Qualifications: MBA

Dirk is a global logistics industry expert, professional board member and investor. He previously served as the CEO of Cargolux Airlines International, on the management board of Kuehne & Nagel and as a non-executive director on the board of Panalpina. In 2016, he founded R&R International Aviation which offers strategic advice in the fields of aviation, logistics and e-commerce in China.


Other directorships: Swiss Post, PrimaFrio, DFDS, Skycell, Instafreight, Log-hub, R+R International Aviation.

Roderick Sparks

 (61)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Committees

  • Audit and risk
  • Remuneration (Chairman)
  • Nomination
  • Social, ethics and sustainability (Chairman)

Qualifications: BCom (Hons), CA(SA), MBA

Roddy is a former managing director of Old Mutual South Africa and Old Mutual Life Assurance Company (SA), and the former chairperson of Old Mutual Unit Trusts, Old Mutual Specialised Finance and Old Mutual Asset Managers (SA).


Other directorships: Truworths International, Trencor, UCT Foundation Investment Committee.

Juliet Anammah

 (53)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Qualifications: BPharm, MBA (Finance)

Appointed to the Imperial board in February 2021, Juliet Anammah is the Chairwoman of Jumia Nigeria & Chief Sustainability Officer at Jumia Group, which is the largest eCommerce platform in Africa and the first African Tech start-up to be listed on the NYSE. She oversees Institutional Relationships, Corporate Communications and ESG for Jumia across the company’s 11 countries in Africa.

She is an experienced executive with more than 28 years of experience, including 7 years at a Partner / Chief executive level.

Before her current role, Juliet was the CEO of Jumia Nigeria, the largest country operations in the Jumia group where she held the position for more than 4 years, overseeing the growth and transition of Jumia Nigeria from online retail to a full digital ecosystem comprising Marketplace, Logistics and Payments.

Before Jumia, Juliet spent 16 years at Accenture, as the Partner managing Accenture’s Consumer Goods Practice in West Africa.

Juliet also serves on Corporate and non-profit Boards in a non-executive capacity. She is currently a board member for the Flour Mills of Nigeria and ACCION as an Independent non-executive director. She is also an at-large EXCO member of Consultative Action Group for the Poor (CGAP).

She is an alumnus of both Wharton College University of Pennsylvania (AMP) and Yale University. She is a member of the Institute of Directors and Capital Club Lagos Chapter and is the Chairperson of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce eCommerce chapter.

Harriet-Ann (Bola) Adesola

 (59)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Qualifications: LLB (Hons)

Bola was appointed to the Imperial board in February 2021. She is the Senior Vice-Chairman, Africa at Standard Chartered Bank.

Prior to this appointment, she was Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) Nigeria and West Africa. Bola was an Executive Director at First Bank of Nigeria Plc and Managing Director of Kakawa Discount House, Nigeria. She also worked in Citibank in senior leadership roles in Nigeria and Tanzania. She is a director of SCB Ghana Plc, and is Chairman of SCB Mauritius Ltd.

Bola has a law degree and over 30 years banking experience and is an alumna of Harvard Business School and Lagos Business School. She is a former Council Member and Honorary Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers Nigeria, and she serves on several corporate boards including the United Nations Global Compact Board where she is Co Vice-Chair of the Board. She is currently a Trustee of the FinTech Association of Nigeria and is Chairman of Lagos State Employment Trust Fund.

In 2001, Bola co-founded Women in Management, Business and Public service (WIMBIZ), now Nigeria’s foremost and highly respected gender-oriented network for women, with global affiliations and she currently serves on the WIMBIZ Board of Trustees. She is also a member of the IOD and of Women Corporate Directors.

Executive
directors

Mohammed Akoojee

 (41)

Group Chief Executive Officer

Committees

  • Asset and liability
  • Social, ethics and sustainability

Qualifications: BCom (Acc) (Hons), CA(SA), CFA

Mohammed was appointed Group CEO of Imperial on 1 February 2019. He joined the Imperial Group in 2009, and prior to his current role, served as the acting CEO of Imperial Holdings in addition to his role as group CFO. His previous roles at Imperial included CEO of the Logistics African Regions division and executive director responsible for mergers and acquisitions, strategy and investor relations for the group. Prior to joining Imperial in 2009, Mohammed worked within the corporate finance and investment banking team at Investec Bank and as an equity analyst for Nedbank Securities.

George de Beer

 (48)

Group Chief Financial Officer

Committees

  • Asset and liability

Qualifications: BCompt (Hons), CA(SA)

George is the group CFO of Imperial. George joined Imperial in 2005 and held various executive positions in subsequent years. He was also closely involved with the creation of the Market Access division and his expertise in integrating acquisitions and establishing controls contributed to the evolution of the division from a collection of relatively small transport businesses to the significant business it is today. Prior to joining Imperial, George was the financial director of Imperilog Limited. George is a director of various group subsidiaries (both local and international), chairs the divisional FRRCs and is a trustee of the South African Provident Fund.

Executive
management

Our executive committee consists of an experienced leadership team who collaborate to deliver the group strategy and create value through the day-to-day operations of the group.

Mohammed Akoojee

 (41)

Group Chief Executive Officer

Committees

  • Asset and liability
  • Social, ethics and sustainability

Qualifications: BCom (Acc) (Hons), CA(SA), CFA

Mohammed was appointed Group CEO of Imperial on 1 February 2019. He joined the Imperial Group in 2009, and prior to his current role, served as the acting CEO of Imperial Holdings in addition to his role as group CFO. His previous roles at Imperial included CEO of the Logistics African Regions division and executive director responsible for mergers and acquisitions, strategy and investor relations for the group. Prior to joining Imperial in 2009, Mohammed worked within the corporate finance and investment banking team at Investec Bank and as an equity analyst for Nedbank Securities.

George de Beer

 (48)

Group Chief Financial Officer

Committees

  • Asset and liability

Qualifications: BCompt (Hons), CA(SA)

George is the group CFO of Imperial. George joined Imperial in 2005 and held various executive positions in subsequent years. He was also closely involved with the creation of the Market Access division and his expertise in integrating acquisitions and establishing controls contributed to the evolution of the division from a collection of relatively small transport businesses to the significant business it is today. Prior to joining Imperial, George was the financial director of Imperilog Limited. George is a director of various group subsidiaries (both local and international), chairs the divisional FRRCs and is a trustee of the South African Provident Fund.

Hakan Bicil

 (50)

Chief Executive Officer:
Logistics International

Qualifications: MBA (Logistics)

Effective July 2020, Hakan serves as the CEO of the Logistics International business. Previously, he was the CEO of Imperial International BV & Co KG. Prior to this, Hakan was chief commercial officer at CEVA Logistics. He has also held senior management positions at Panalpina (executive vice president strategic business development), at the TOLL Group (managing director Europe, Middle East & Africa) and at Kuehne & Nagel (senior vice-president global business development).

Edwin Hewitt

 (55)

Chief Executive Officer: Logistics Africa

Qualifications: MTech (Met Eng.), IMP (MIT, USA), MDP (UP)

Effective July 2020, Edwin is the CEO of the Logistics Africa business. This follows his appointment as CEO of Logistics South Africa in March 2020. He has an exceptional reputation for translating strategy into operational excellence and for simplifying organisational complexity in multiple industries across Africa. Edwin has led companies such as DAWN and Capital Africa Steel in his capacity as chief executive officer, and served as the chief restructuring officer of PPC and group executive director of Murray & Roberts.

Esha Mansingh

 (35)

Executive Vice President: Corporate Affairs and Investor Relations

Qualifications: Doctorate (Humanitarianism H.C.), BA (Communication Science), Financial Management (Cert)

Esha is responsible for investor relations, ESG and sustainability, internal and stakeholder communications, corporate affairs and brand positioning for the Group. She is also the chairman of Imperial’s global women’s forum. Prior to this, Esha served as the group head of investor relations and media spokesperson for Imperial Holdings Limited.

Esha’s previous roles include the head of investor relations at Kumba Iron Ore Limited, a subsidiary of the Anglo American plc group, and investor relations officer and media spokesperson for Harmony Gold Mining Company.

She currently serves as the co-chairman of the World Economic Forum’s New Champions South Africa board, and a non-executive director and trustee of the Imperial and Motus Community Trust and the Unjani Clinics NPC. Esha is also a founding member of the Investor Relations Society of South Africa,the chairman of the integrated reporting and ESG and Reporting sub-committee of CFO Forum South Africa, a member of the IFC’s women in healthcare working group, and a member of the Integrated Reporting Committee South Africa working group.

Esha was recognised as one of the top 100 women in business in the world in 2021 by the Global Trade Chamber and chosen as one of Mail and Guardian’s 50 Power of Women 2021. Esha achieved an honorary doctorate in humanitarianism from Global International Alliance, for the vast and far-reaching humanitarianism work she undertakes.

Cobus Rossouw

 (52)

Executive Vice President: Digital and Information Technology

Qualifications: BEng (Industrial) cum laude, BEng (Hons) (Industrial), BCom (Hons) Logistics

Cobus leads the newly established centre-led Digital & IT Function supporting Logistics Africa and Market Access. He is the custodian of the group's digital mandate that includes disruptive venture investments, unlocking competitive advantage from digital capabilities, facilitating insights from data and standardising systems across the business and functions. Before joining Imperial in 2009, Cobus co-founded Volition which he led to evolve into Resolve to underpin the Lead Logistics Provider business within Imperial. Prior to that, Cobus was Logistics Director of Cadbury South Africa.

Johan Truter

 (48)

Chief Executive Officer: Market Access

Effective July 2020, Johan serves as the CEO of Imperial’s Market Access business. Integral to our ‘Gateway to Africa’ strategy, Johan guides this business across the globe as it works to facilitate trade flows into and out of Africa. His extensive experience in navigating the complex African continent - and proven success in developing and implementing market access solutions and value-add logistics - sees him well placed as a strategic partner to multinational clients wanting to enter and grow in emerging economies. Johan previously served as CEO of the African Regions - growing the business from humble beginnings to the go to strategic partner in Africa to brand owners looking for unique consumer and healthcare market access and logistics solutions. He initially joined the group with the acquisition of Broco in 2004, a business of which he was joint founder and managing director.

Steve Woodward

 (61)

Executive Vice President: People and Culture

Qualifications: BA (Psychology/English), MBA

Steve is responsible for driving our cultural transformation and people-related and human resource initiatives and for developing and implementing integrated, world-class people policies and practices. An experienced global business leader, Steve has held numerous senior executive positions in large corporations in the US, Europe and Africa. He worked for SABMiller for 20 years in human resources, corporate strategy and senior general management. Prior to SAB, Steve worked in the mining industry for Anglo American and De Beers for ten years in the fields of labour relations and human resources.

Zayd Laher

 (39)

Executive Vice President: Corporate Finance

Qualifications: BCom (Hons), CFA

Zayd serves as our EVP: Corporate Finance and has over 12 years of global investment banking experience. He has worked on numerous M&A and capital markets transactions for leading, international investment banks and has advised a diverse client base (including corporates, governments and financial sponsors). He has been involved in a variety of transactions encompassing cross border M&A, IPOs, capital restructurings, bond issuance, equity derivatives and private placements.

Zayd has led the successful completion of multiple transactions that are critical in positioning Imperial for growth. He joined us from Standard Chartered Bank where he served as Executive Principal in the Corporate Finance Division focusing on M&A in Africa. Previously, Zayd worked at Credit Suisse where he led the investment banking coverage effort for Credit Suisse in sub-Saharan Africa and served on the Board of Directors of Credit Suisse Securities, Johannesburg.

Previous