Chris van der Merwe, CEO of Curro Holdings. Photo: Supplied
Chris van der Merwe, CEO of Curro Holdings. Photo: Supplied

Stadio Holdings chief Chris van der Merwe ready to step down in March

By Sandile Mchunu Time of article published Dec 10, 2019

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DURBAN – Stadio Holdings on Monday announced that its chief executive Dr Chris van der Merwe would step down from his position at the end of March but would remain as a non-executive director. 

The private education group said Van der Merwe would continue to advise and support Stadio, specifically on the development of the two new greenfield campuses in Centurion and Durbanville as well as investigating the potential establishment of a medical faculty.

Van der Merwe, who founded Curro Holdings in 1998, became Stadio’s chief executive, following from its unbundling from Curro in 2017 and listed separately on the JSE. 

The group named Chris Vorster, founder and chief executive of Southern Business School (SBS) as his successor. 

It said Vorster was a highly experienced businesspersin and has more than 20 years of experience in the higher education sector. 

The group said Vorster would drive Stadio’s growth ambitions goals in the medium- to long-term, including the consolidation of its various programmes and institutions under a single brand.

It said he would also be expected to establishing centralised services to support the company’s core functions and continuing to widen access to quality education across South Africa.

Stadio owns 74 percent majority stake in SBS.

In paying tribute to Van der Merwe the group said he played a key role in the establishment of Stadio following a very successful path as founder and chief executive of Curro Holdings. 

“He was instrumental in establishing Stadio through the unbundling of Embury Institute for Higher Education out of Curro. Stadio was listed on October 3, 2017, and grew from 840 Embury students in 2017, to the current number of students, which is in excess of 31 000, across its registered private higher education institutions, including The South African School of Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance (Afda), Lisof, SBS, Milpark Education, Prestige Academy and Embury,” the group said.

Under van der Merwe’s leadership Stadio delivered against the various strategic objectives set out in its pre-listing statement issued in September 2017. 

Stadio’s vision is to accommodate more than 100 000 students in the future, of which 80 000 are anticipated to be distance learning students. 

Stadio has settled a loan claim of R35 million that Bredamonti held against SBS. 

Stadio shares declined 6.39 percent on the JSE yesterday to close at R2.05.


STADIO's vision is to accommodate more than 100 000 students in the future.  |  Supplied

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