Gugulethu Sigasa

President, Abasa and Founder, Ncube Investment Holdings

When she achieved 99% for grade eight accounting, Gugulethu Sigasa realised that she had a knack for the discipline — something she used to attain a number of bursaries to complete her tertiary studies.

Now the president of the Association for the Advancement of Black Accountants of Southern Africa (Abasa) and one the youngest people to hold this seat, Sigasa has launched Ncube Investment Holdings, a 100% black-owned consulting and investment company with divisions focusing on tax and accounting, renewable energy, and renewable energy options such as solar powered products and biogas installations.

“I ventured into starting my own business because I believe that Africa needs to utilise its most under-used resource — its women — so much more effectively,” she says. “Our growth capabilities would be well enhanced if we leveraged off the value that women have to add to our continent. You cannot expect to move Africa forward if more than 50% of its people are not part of that move.”

With a vision of seeing her business become a pan-African conglomerate fully owned by women, Sigasa strives to achieve that by working with schools and career development initiatives through Abasa, in order to help young women achieve their potential. She also mentors university students, serves on the board of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants and is on the Black Business Council.

Sigasa runs marathons in her spare time “to keep me sane”, pointing out that there are many problems you can resolve while running 42km. She completed the Comrades Marathon for the first time in 2015, inspired by the camaraderie and the overcoming of personal limitations that she witnessed during the run. — Kerry Haggard

Twitter: @sgugwana