Alexander Forbes CFO resigns, scooped up by Discovery


Despite earlier threats of legal action and cases of defamation, popular radio DJ Sbu and Forbes Africa Magazine may agree to shake hands after all.

JOHANNESBURG – Alexander Forbes announced the resignation of group chief financial officer, Deon Viljoen, on Friday after.

He has been in the position for 14 years.

The financial services group said Bruce Bydawell would assume the position of acting group chief financial officer after Viljoen’s resignation comes into effect from 30 April.

The company also announced the retirement of Peter Edwards, managing director of institutional financial services, with effect from 31 March, though he agreed to stay as a senior adviser post his retirement.

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Alexander Forbes said extensive searches were under way to identify suitable candidates for both roles and were committed to appointing first-class leaders commensurate with the standing of the group.

Andrew Darfoor, the group chief executive, thanked the executives and said the company was making progress in its strategy as a Pan-African financial services leader.

“The strategy we announced in September 2016 is underpinned by the simplification of our operating model and a focus on delivering an integrated value proposition to our clients through three clear business lines – Institutional clients, Retail clients and Emerging Markets clients,” Darfoor said.

“This strategy will focus and help us accelerate our execution and delivery capability in building a Pan-African financial services leader. We are making strong and decisive progress with the full backing and support of our Board. In the interim, I will also act as Head of the Institutional clients division effective 1 April.”

Financial services group Discovery announced Viljoen's appointment as its new chief financial director.

Viljoen will succeed Richard Farber at the beginning of May, with May set to remain as an executive director and to continue to provide support to Viljoen during the transition.

Prior to Alexander Forbes, Viljoen was a partner and director of PwC Johannesburg's financial services team.

Discovery welcomed Viljoen to the group.

“Deon brings tremendous experience to this role, and will add value to the Discovery team,” the company said in a statement.