Gugu Duda

It takes a certain kind of person to step into a troubled state-owned enterprise and set out to turn it around. Gugu Duda is such a person. She’s the new CFO of the SABC.

A chartered accountant by training, Duda worked as the CFO of internet and telephone banking at FNB before becoming the executive investment manager at Wipcapital and vice- president of strategy and risk integration for continental Africa for AngloGold Ashanti. The opportunity to serve in the public sector was a dream come true. Working for the state, she understands the weight of responsibility and that it’s not all about revenue, but what’s best for all South Africans.

She’s also aware of what she needs to do to turn the SABC and its financial situation around. She’s starting by putting in a sound system of internal controls “that can stand the test of time” to get to best practice. She’s also drawing on the strength of and improving the financial management so that they understand it’s not simply about reporting and figures but also about being key financial advisers to the business. And when it comes to the overall strategy of the SABC, she knows it’s beyond a number-crunching game. Softer issues, such as the reputation of management to attract funding and compelling content to attract audiences and advertisers, are key to achieving the growth Duda’s gunning for.

Beyond her business savvy, strategic mind and knack for numbers, Duda is a brilliant communicator. It’s how and why she emcees at events, and achieves everything she sets out to do — such as turning trouble into turnover.

— Lu Larche