A trio brought together by a common goal and the ambition to reshape businesses across Africa through impactful transformation. Mvikeli, Khulasande Capital, and Tsebo all share this goal, and were driven to create a solid foundation for a powerful, life-changing partnership.
Interesting fact: Mvikeli first heard of Tsebo while at UCT
While studying to be a chartered accountant at the University of Cape Town (UCT), Mvikeli had the opportunity to interact with one of Tsebo’s catering brands, Fedics. They were responsible for the meals served at the residence where he was staying. So, when the time came to partner with Tsebo, he already had an idea of who the company was and what they were about.
The beginning of a passionate partnership
Khulasande Capital, a private equity and investment vehicle, first had the opportunity to work with Tsebo after one of their partners, Investec, introduced them to the company.
In 2020, a consortium of South African banks and financial investors, including Khulasande Capital, Investec Bank, Nedbank Private Equity, Standard Chartered Bank and Ninety One, concluded a transaction to acquire the operations of Tsebo Solutions, together with management and the Tsebo ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) Trust.
“We assisted Tsebo last year when it went through a change in ownership. Our experience in managing assets and our common vision to empower people and clients across the continent, was the coming together of natural partners,” says Mvikeli.
“Partnerships built on shared goals and ambitions are critical to us. Our purpose statement is ‘growth through impactful transformation’, and this relates to all the businesses we’re involved in,” he adds.
A shared goal in action
The Department of Trade and Industry has recently notified Tsebo that they have managed not only to retain their Level 1 B-BBEEE certification, but also to improve their score year-on-year. This was one of the goals set out by the Tsebo-Khulasande partnership and, in reaching this significant achievement, it’s clear how powerful the right partnerships can be.
“I can’t say I was surprised when I heard the news,” says Mvikeli. “With our involvement and Tsebo’s track record as a development and transformation partner, I knew all the elements were already in place to retain their certification. Nevertheless, I’m extremely proud of what we’ve achieved.”
Mvikeli is actively involved in the business and serves as a Tsebo Non-Executive Director (part-time) as well as the Chairman of the Group’s Social, Ethics and Transformation Committee Board.
Tsebo attained a procurement recognition score of 135%, with a growing black ownership component of 53.7% and a 45.9% black female ownership element.
Powering transformation and diversity across Africa
A drive and passion for empowerment and transformation are critical across the continent. Research has found a correlation between diversity in teams and how this improves performance. The shared experiences and different perspectives all contribute to a greater understanding, not only of the work itself, but of the spaces in which people and businesses operate.
“It’s important that we as a business take active strides to include the previously excluded parts of our populations in the economic machine. This helps ensure a harmonious and prosperous future for all. As a responsible corporate citizen, it’s something that we need to promote actively,” says Mvikeli.
A people-driven business
People are at the heart of Khulasande and, by extension, Tsebo. The companies are shaped by their employees, clients, communities, shareholders and other partners they work with.
“This business not only empowers our clients across the continent to focus on their core offering and do their best work, but it also impacts our people,” Mvikeli says. “What starts as an entry-level job that gives people the ability to do good work and look after their families, soon provides them with the skills and knowledge they need to grow and succeed in the long term. If that’s not a rewarding thing to witness, I don’t know what is.”
The secret to Tsebo’s success
Tsebo’ magic ingredient for success? According to Mvikeli, it’s the business’s clear understanding of its higher purpose and its relentless dedication to service excellence. By staying close to their clients’ needs, they have been able to adapt, evolve, innovate, and grow. This has helped Tsebo achieve its ambitious goals and remain relevant for over 50 years.
A birthday message for Tsebo
In closing, Mvikeli wanted to make these final remarks: “We’ve certainly enjoyed the journey so far and I hope this is a long and fruitful relationship. I’d like to congratulate Tsebo for ‘raising the bat’ when the going gets tough. I’d also like to thank the myriad employees who dedicate themselves to our clients every day. Their work makes achieving major milestones like a 50th anniversary possible.”
The partnership between Tsebo and Khulasande Capital has proven to be an unstoppable force. The future looks bright for Tsebo and celebrating another 50 years is something we look forward to seeing.