Accountants rule JSE roost

2011-04-14 15:45

Cape Town - About a third of the chief executives of the 194 top listed companies on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange are chartered accountants, the SA Institute of Chartered Accounants (Saica) said on Thursday.

It said it had completed a comprehensive update of the JSC's database of directorships which showed that 32% of CEOs and a further 32%, or 692, of directors at the top listings were qualified chartered accounants.

In contrast, 9.8% of board directors held an MBA.

Saica chief executive Matsobane Matlwa said the findings debunked the myth that qualifying as a chartered accountant only served to prepare students for careers as auditors, accountants or corporate specialists.

"Clearly the business sector is increasingly appreciating the extraordinary business value they can derive from the expertise of the nation's most sought after business qualification.

"South Africa's chartered accountants are leaders in business in many diverse roles. There is no better qualification for aspiring corporate tycoons, innovative entrepreneurs or captains of industry."

  • - 2011-04-14 16:18

    Keep it up CA (SA)!

  • Pieter Ferreira - 2011-04-14 16:36

    It is always good to have a fairly good sence of how many beans are available to brew a stew. However to brew a nice stew that does not taste like beans you need to know not to add too many beans. Even bean stew needs water if the beans like it or not.

  • Julius - 2011-04-14 16:38

    and we are surprised that there is no growth in SA !

      p123 - 2011-04-14 19:51

      Thanks Malema for that...

  • Beanie - 2011-04-15 07:56

    True that!!!

  • Derrick - 2011-04-15 08:56

    I really do think CA's is a very impressive qualification that takes alot of hard work and dedication. However in the work place I do sometimes see the shortfalls of it, I don't think there is a innovative aspect to CA's and sometimes they think to much in accounting terms and not "real life" terms.

      Juggernaut - 2011-04-18 08:21

      Correct. The real testr is this type of split "worldclass" or merely a backward SA situation. CAs damage SA hugely.

  • Juggernaut - 2011-04-15 10:22

    More propaganda

  • rhysvw - 2011-04-15 17:25

    Dont get why people who spend their entire working careers looking backward get put in positions when they suddenly have to look forward.... No wonder SA is such a vibrant and innovative business environment. not

  • Samukeliso - 2011-04-28 16:02

    I think thats why the corporate world is in trouble. Folks we need to move away from thinking the world is made of dollars and cents. While this is an important hygiene factor in an entity, who will think and justify shared value principles in corporate governance? Accountants do not see the value of social capital, people capital , environmental capital etc without thinking in $ terms. Where we are headed is a place of no return.

  • Rory Harrington - 2011-05-03 12:30

    Undoubtedly, CAs have their place in a business, but I'd respectfully suggest that it's not at the helm. I suspect these figures are simply a reflection of the surplus of accountants in the marketplace, and the corresponding deficit of MBAs, rather than any actual preference for the CA qualification. Bottom line, who would informed shareholders really feel more comfortable with as a CEO; highly focused, insular specialists, or multi-functional business generalists?

  • James Green - 2011-06-23 10:36

    A lot of ignorant comments here. Firstly, Chartered Accountants in particular aren't about absolute numbers and figures at all. Yes, the core their knowledge is based on accounting principles, but one of the keys to success is knowing exactly what resources you have at your disposal. Secondly, CA's are not people who draw up accounts and balances in a company. A CA for the most part is an Auditor. With an audit you can't just look at the figures, fraudsters will know how, for the most part, to make it accountingly sound for them to transfer those millions into their own bank accounts. It's because of this that an auditor must have a thorough understanding of the business. The partners and managers of an Audit firm based with mining clients, for example, know almost as much with actually how the whole process works than some directors. They don't look simply at accounts but rather, what accounts and transactions should exist for a smelter, for a mine shaft etc. This only comes with knowing how it works. Often because of this, a CA is able to witness first hand the problems with inefficiencies in the projects and have a good understanding on what could be done to fix this. Now take this fact and couple it with the fact that Ca's in their work will be exposed to dozens of other clients like this. Additionally MBA's are praised for having leadership skills, but a CA needs to be just as capable in this regard to manage an audit team to actually conduct an Audit effectively

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