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Panellist Profile


Jeremy Rowse

Qualifications
B.COM (RHODES)
MBA (UCT)

Panels:
Commercial
  • Mediation
Profile:

Jeremy started his working career with the Anglo American Corporation as a Graduate Management Trainee after completing a B.Com at Rhodes University. He later returned to Zambia, where he had grown up and ran one of the family companies in Lusaka. In 1981 he enrolled full time at UCT and completed an MBA, and then worked at Avis as Sales Manager.

Jeremy joined African Life Assurance as Marketing Manager in 1983. Total assets of the company were R40 million at that time. Within a few months he was appointed National Sales Manager and focused the company’s marketing strategy on the emerging market, providing innovative policies for as little as $1 per month. In 1991 African Life listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. In 2000 Jeremy was appointed Chief Executive of the company which, at that time had reached R7 billion in assets and provided cover for over two million lives. At the time of his early retirement in March 2006 the African Life Group had total assets of R13 billion, had grown embedded value during his tenure by over 60% and operated in six African countries. Under Jeremy’s leadership the company expanded its African operations in Botswana, Kenya and Namibia to include Zambia, Ghana and Tanzania.
Jeremy supported African Life’s move into the health business, providing affordable and comprehensive health cover solutions for the emerging market in and outside of South Africa. Today this is a highly profitable and fast-growing operation in the First Rand stable. African Life was one of the first “empowered” companies when Real Africa acquired a 51% stake in the company in 1995. Subsequent to Real Africa’s unbundling of African Life in 2000 Jeremy introduced a broad-based empowerment partner in 2003/2004.
Jeremy also served as a member of the Board of the Life Offices Association of South
Africa for over 7 years, as well as serving on President Kufour’s Ghana Investment
Advisory Council (GIAC) for over 4 years, after being nominated by The World Bank. In
late 2005, Jeremy negotiated the sale of African Life to Sanlam. He subsequently took
early retirement.

Jeremy was appointed to the board of Africa’s largest short-term insurer, Santam in
2006 and is a member of the Sustainability (board) sub-committee and chairs the
Minority Shareholders’ sub-committee. He was appointed to the board of Nigeria’s
leading life and short-term insurer, Leadway Assurance in April 2007, where he
represents the interests of significant investor, the IFC (World Bank). In 2009 he was
similarly appointed to the board of diversified financial services group, Madison Financial
Services Limited (Zambia). He is an internationally-accredited (Centre for Effective
Dispute Resolution, CEDR) commercial mediator and sits on both the mediator panel
and the board of Tokiso Commercial – South Africa’s premier commercial mediation
services provider.


Jeremy is based in Cape Town.