South Africa Appoints New CEO for Troubled State Arms Firm Denel

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa on Thursday appointed a new chief executive officer to state-run arms firm Denel as the government tries to turnaround the cash-strapped company plagued by years of mismanagement.

Denel company logo is seen at the entrance of their business divisions in Pretoria, South Africa, December 4, 2018. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

Daniel Du Toit is expected to take up the role in January, a joint statement by the ministry of public enterprises and Denel’s Board said. The previous CEO resigned in May.

“We look forward to working with Mr Du Toit to provide direction to Denel,” board chair Monhla Hlahla said of the former managing director of SAAB Medav Technologies in Germany.

“The reputational damage Denel suffered over the past two years had led to a loss of confidence from stakeholders, including the banking and investment community, who in turn, were unwilling to extend credit facilities to the company.”

Reuters reported on Thursday that South Africa’s state asset manager has quietly bought up almost 90 percent of Denel’s bonds in the past 12 months, as private investors say they are reluctant to lend to the weapons company because of its previous management’s involvement in a corruption scandal.

(Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)