Story: Chris Fitz-Gerald

Illovo Sugar South Africa has a new chairman – widely respected business leader Mpho Makwana is now Board Chairman.

He is taking over from Gavin Dalgleish who, after four successful years as Chairman, has decided to step down from the demands of the South Africa Board to further focus on his role as Group Managing Director of Illovo Sugar Africa. “We are thrilled to have Mpho join our South African Board. 

Mpho brings with him an in-depth understanding of the potential of South Africa’s economic opportunities, as well as our social realities and the challenges they represent.

He brings with him an in-depth understanding of the potential of South Africa’s economic opportunities, as well as our social realities and the challenges they represent. I am confident that his very strong record in both managing and chairing private and public-sector organisations - coupled with a strong empathy with our ethos, culture and commitment to serving our communities through the creation of shared value - makes him the ideal Board Chairman for our company. 

I look forward to working with him as our business transforms and continues to grow in South Africa,” said Dalgleish.

Makwana is currently Independent Non-Executive Chairman of JSE-listed ArcelorMittal South Africa Limited and also serves as an Independent Non-Executive Director on the boards of other JSE listed companies such as Adcock Ingram Holdings Ltd (AIHLF.PK), eNX Group Limited (ENX:JNB), Nedbank Group Ltd (NDBKF.PK), and Sephaku Holdings Limited (SEPJ.J). He further serves as Chairman of The Mining Indaba Advisory Board, Epitome Investments (Pty) Ltd, New Nishati Investments (Pty) Ltd, Gibela Rail RF (Pty) Ltd and the Boardroom Alliance (Pty) Ltd - which holds the sub-Saharan trading license for executive search firm, Heidrick & Struggles. He is also a Non-Executive Director of BioTherm Energy (PTY) Ltd; one South Africa’s foremost renewable energy companies.

“I have long admired the Illovo Group’s African business model and approach to living its commitment to the transformation of agriculture across the continent. I strongly endorse the common values shared throughout the Group, and closer to home, its active support of the South African Government’s social and economic development agenda.  It will be an honour to become Chairman of Illovo SA, and I look forward to being a part of the delivery of its strategy for continuing to deliver on ambitious growth and diversification opportunities,” said Makwana.

A business leader with a caring heart, Makwana volunteers as a member of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital’s Fundraising Committee and is a Trustee on the Board of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund. In April 2016, he was one of 14 trustees appointed by former President Jacob Zuma to serve as a Trustee on the Board of Trustees of Brand South Africa. During the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Mpho served as interim Chairman and CEO (3rd Quarter of 2009), and as Chairman of Eskom Holdings Limited SOC from 10 June 2010 until his term as Director concluded on 27 June 2011.

He holds a Bachelor of Administration (B.Admin) in Public Administration and Public Science from the University of Zululand and a B.Admin in Public Management from the University of Pretoria. He also received an Executive Development Programme Certificate from the Kellogg School of Management and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Retail Management from the University of Stirling.

Chris Fitz-Gerald

Chris Fitz-Gerald is Group Communications Manager at