MIC turns 20! Founding member Kgalema Motlanthe recalls how it all began…

Watch Bruce Whitfield's interview with founding members of the Mine Workers Investment Company, Kgalema Motlanthe and Kuben Pillay:

The Mineworkers Investment Company (MIC) is celebrating its 20th birthday.

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed former Deputy President of South Africa Kgalema Motlanthe, a founding member of the MIC.

Whitfield also spoke to Kuben Pillay, MIC Founding Executive Director and Non- Executive Chairman of Primedia, owner of 702 and CapeTalk.

Listen to the audio (scroll down) for more on the following:

  • Why the founders decided to form an investment company (an unusual step for a union at the time).

  • The internal debates that took place within the union at that time.

  • Anecdotes about the early days of the organisation (e.g. the challenges, what the founders were trying to achieve and what the broader purpose and drive was).

  • The organisation’s unique institutional structure (trust ownership, separation of functions and responsibilities between the MIC, the Mineworkers Investment Trust and the National Union of Mineworkers) and its role in sustaining the organisation over time.

  • How the organisation kept away from controversy (clean history, no scandals, its integrity, unqualified audits, the fact that it remains 100% owned by the trust, undiluted).

  • Why certain sectors were invested into or open to BEE investors (large sale deregulation of state assets or strategic sectors).

Scroll down for quotes from the audio below.

It was about understanding how society works; you need capital!

Kgalema Motlanthe

We realised you couldn’t run things on a “comradely” basis; you’ll run it into the ground!

Kgalema Motlanthe

I was acting as a legal advisor to NUM at the time when the idea of MIC was conceived.

Kuben Pillay

One of our founding principles was to never invest in any industry in which NUM organised in.

Kuben Pillay

MIC’s greatest strength – the reason we survived – was the structure that was put in place when we didn’t own a single asset.

Kuben Pillay

Ownership of media assets doesn’t mean you control the content.

Kuben Pillay

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This article first appeared on 702 : MIC turns 20! Founding member Kgalema Motlanthe recalls how it all began…


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