Johannesburg, South Africa   Source:

The Black Management Forum (the BMF) which is at the forefront of advocating and lobbying for transformation in Corporate South Africa is pleased with the appointment of Mary Vilakazi as the Group Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Executive Director of the Firstrand Group. Ms Vilakazi’s extensive background and experience in financial services and insurance positioned her as the best choice to take over the role of COO. 

"We are pleased and excited about Ms Vilakazi’s appointment. It is very gratifying and refreshing to us to see that there are still companies who regard transformation as a business imperative and continue to make concerted and deliberate efforts in ensuring that they advance transformation where it matters most, at executive level. Firstrand has demonstrated their respect and appreciation for black talent and leadership,"  said the BMF President, Mncane Mthunzi.

The BMF believes and advocates for the breaking of artificial glass ceilings in Corporate South Africa. Breaking of these glass ceilings through appointments such as that of Ms Vilakazi will ensure that there is a critical mass of black people in leadership positions within companies and other areas of our society. “The black people whose acceleration and advancement we advocate for is on the basis of merit and it is precisely because of their merit that we are engaging in this struggle,” continued Mthunzi

The Black Management Forum extends itswell wishes to Ms Vilakazi and pledges its unwavering support to her as she ascends in her new role later thisyear..



About the Black Management Forum

The Black Management Forum (the BMF) has been in existence for 41 years. It is a thought-leadership organisation with the main purpose of influencing socio-economic transformation in our country, in pursuit of socio-economic justice, fairness and equity. The BMF stands for the development and empowerment of managerial leadership and the creation of managerial structures and processes that reflect the demographics and values of the wider society.

For more information, please contact: 

Anele Ndlovu

Black Management Forum

Head: Marketing & Communications

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