Khalid Abdulla, business leader of the year 2017
Abdulla was given the nod for his willingness to serve and contribute to his community, making him a leader in changing social and business landscapes, during the award ceremony in Joburg on Thursday.
“I am truly humbled yet extremely excited at receiving this particular award. Being judged against the formidable calibre of my fellow finalists - who are all champions for the work they are doing, not only in their respective businesses, but in standing as strong moral compasses for all South Africans in how we should all do business - is a deep honour, and one I shall uphold as we continue to walk through these turbulent economic times.
“Mr Gerrie Fourie, the chief executive of Capitec Bank Holdings, and Mr Jabulane Mabuza, the chairman of Telkom SA - let us celebrate together - for we are all winners here tonight, as we are all driving change in Africa for the betterment of Africans.”
Abdulla is also the recent recipient of the South Africa’s Future Maker of the Year 2017: Driver for Change; the Top Most Empowered Business Leader of the Year 2017 by the Oliver Empowerment Awards; and also one of the best chief executives in the country, ranked among the 10 best in 2015 by the Financial Mail.
Abdulla is also a recipient of the prestigious Black Business Executive Circle (BBEC)/Absa Bank Kaelo Award in 2010.
“Leadership is often a lonely path, but this award is really testament to the whole of AEEI, and its commitment to broad-based black economic empowerment and enterprise development that allows us to deliver strong financial performance with a holistic and sustainable business model, and which is now ready to expand into Africa,” he said.
“Despite all the negative news in the country, there is still much to be positive about in southern Africa. As business leaders, we need to keep hope alive for our citizens so that together we can work towards building the nation on a sustainable basis beyond 2030,” Abdulla added.
Previous winners in this category include Adrian Gore, the chief executive of South Africa’s Discovery, and Dr Johan van Zyl, the chairperson of Sanlam SA.