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Following the 46th annual CFO World Congress, recently hosted by the Southern African Institute for Business Accountants (SAIBA) in Cape Town, SAIBA is continuing to set benchmarks for Africa financial leaders.

In addition to successfully hosting the first CFO World Congress in Africa, SAIBA secured another highlight for the continent by claiming the Area Presidency for IAFEI in Africa, under the leadership of SAIBA CEO, Nicolaas van Wyk. IAFEI (the International Association for Finance Executives Institutes) is a private non-profit and non-political association that comprises 20 member institutes and more than 20 000 financial executives from across the world. SAIBA is Africa’s first professional CFO organisation to be accepted as a member of IAFEI.

“It is an honour to represent and incorporate Africa as part of a premier group of financial professionals that aims to improve a worldwide understanding of financial systems,” says Van Wyk. “The Area Presidency for Africa enables us to play an integral part in a global working committee where international financial management is key.”

CFO World Congress

According to Van Wyk, hosting the CFO World Congress has helped place the continent at the fore of the world’s finance developments. “Not only were we given a fantastic opportunity to showcase the professionalism of South Africa and Africa’s CFOs, but also facilitate networking among people from different backgrounds and financial contexts.” The Congress brought together more than 70 local and international speakers and 200 plus delegates under one roof to discuss issues impacting CFO communities. Next year’s Congress will be hosted in Brasil.

The Congress focused on the importance of contributing to new global developments and how to positively impact Africa’s financial positioning and governance. In light of this, SAIBA, in partnership with IAFEI, opened nominations for the Next Top African CFO of the Year 2017 Award to encourage the continued involvement of financial professionals and to promote growth in the field. “In Africa, the financial industry is developing at a significant pace,” says IAFEI Chairman, Fausto Cosi. “This is our investment to guide up-and-coming CFOs and provide them with the knowledge and practical insights they need to be successful in their careers.”

The person awarded this prestigious title will receive the opportunity to travel to Europe and complete a mentorship programme, learning from some of Europe’s top CFOs. This will be followed by media exposure and opportunities to engage with local stakeholders back in SA for the following 12 months. The Next Top African CFO will be able to interact with experts such as Jean-Luc Michel (CAO, Nissan Europe), Armand Angeli (VP, Lumiu Ltd), Frederic Doche (CEO, Decision Performance Conseil), Dominique Chesneau (Managing Partner, Tresoriskconseil) and Jerome Bogaert (Founder, HARMONY). Nominations will soon open and can be made on SAIBA's website. The winning candidate will be announced next year.

For more information and updates, visit the CFO World Congress website, follow #CFOWorldCongress @TalksCfo on the Facebook page and Twitter.