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Legends Of The Fall

Stakeholders looking for answers - but silence reigns

The silo’s of fractured power that make up the South African horseracing industry have gone eerily quiet in a week that has seen our powerhouse racing operator facing a sand in the face reality check of catastrophic proportions.

In what should have been a pat-on-the-back-week after the dizzy highs of Africa’s Greatest Racing event, Friday 12 July 2019 will go down as the day that the chickens finally came home to roost and the sport of kings in South Africa reached the crossroads – with red faces and the inevitable finger pointing and excuses.

Public Protector, Adv Busisiwe Mkhwebane (Photo: Flickr)

Public Protector, Adv Busisiwe Mkhwebane (Photo: Flickr)

Punter’s levies, VAT, the Public Protector, the bookmaker brawl, the economy – but Phumelela’s Friday Of Fear was really a multi-faceted culmination of a mudstorm.

An insidious creep of years of a shift of focus and poor management, with horseracing fading off the pace to run a dirty third to the priorities of power and shareholders.

While they belong to recent history, men like Brian Mehl, Jim Tennant and David Attenborough had their foundations torn to shreds by Rian du Plessis.

Phumelela CEO Rian du Plessis

Former Phumelela CEO Rian du Plessis

And on Du Plessis’ successor’s 63rd birthday on Wednesday, the share price hit a new low of R2,50 with a trajectory that frankly doesn’t speak of likely Moon landings in the next fifty years.

John Stuart – hospital pass?

But John Stuart can’t be blamed. He is the deer in the headlights that inherited the fake family silver.

Where to now? The private wealth that props up the sport will hopefully come to the rescue.

Heads must roll.

A leader with vision, competency and a clean blank sheet is desperately needed to restructure the model and unify the industry.

And destroy those bloody silo’s, as a start.

The new season looms, the 2yo Sale lies ahead and stakeholders are crying out for reassurances.

We have tried to get some answers. For now, there are literally none.

Read more in the SP Digest – please click on the image below:

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11 comments on “Legends Of The Fall

  1. bwanachris says:

    Numerous answers with issues regarding this are desperately needed

    1. Rian Du Plessis publicly stated on resignation that he would not be dumping his shares. He mentioned they were undervalued and he felt their worth R17
    Have the shares been sold ?
    Have other shares been sold by a concern with serious Absa debt ?
    Can this be regarded as a pump and dump ?
    What consequences are there for the person responsible for locking RA members into this share ?
    Will these bonuses and dividends be paid back should they be found as wanting as they are ?

    2. Who collects the rentals from all these betting shops in all these joint ventures and outlets ?

  2. Annie2 says:

    I like the silo reference – each little empire of power with a ruler – all on their own mission.

    How is it that the breeders associations, the owners associations, the jockeys associations, the trainers associations, the grooms associations etc have not asked pertinent questions – like where is next week’s stake cheque coming from?

    These groups all have vested interests and livelihoods to protect.

    The NHA are also silent – yet a jockey swears at a trainer and gets R5k.

    Im surprised breeders and owners arent’t swearing too.

    The fear of speaking out and doing a bit of swearing has cost people dearly.

  3. Preston says:

    Get yourself a copy of the shareholders register as at Monday date. It can make for an interesting read and give a new meaning to term of “monopoly “.

  4. Brendon says:

    An entire industry is held to ransom by the various captains (of silos) who have no regrets nor concern for what tomorrow holds for the industry. The captains will continue enjoying their ride on the gravy train and extracting massive salaries for their basic administrative contribution to the industry.

    So, if the CEO is a hospital pass holder and lacks the leadership that the industry demands today for its survival, then why is the board of directors of Phumelela not acting with a degree of decisiveness to lead the industry? Or is the board of directors also a holder of a similar pass?

    Evidently, this is a sad state of affairs and those responsible for the perpetual muddle are masquerading as saviours of the industry when in fact they are unable to save themselves from themselves.

    Does the board of Phumelela and the executive management accept:

    1) That they are deficient insofar as they currently have no “leader with vision, competency and a clean blank sheet”; and

    2) Their responsibility for the desperate state that the industry finds itself in and agree that the industry” is desperately needed to restructure the model and unify the industry”

    If so, what can you offer they industry other than resignations which are long overdue and will be most welcome by all.

  5. Steve Reid says:

    @ Preston, this is no new revelation and its something myself and others have been beating on for over a decade now. The asset stripping and enriching of the inner circle of the Steinhoff mob at racings expense while the sheep looked on and did nothing. The top 8 shareholders in Phumelela are ranked in shares held as follows:

    1. Racing Trust – Jooste controlled
    2. Kalamojo Trading – Jooste/Kantor. Kantor. Chairman of Phumelela. iNVESTEC history.
    3. IHH Company – Supabets
    4. Yerranzano – A plethora of the usual suspects inc, van Niekerk, Jooste, Kantor, Heide et al
    5. Lotus Good Investments – Du Plessis/Jooste
    6. Gride Investments – SASCOC window dressing shares received at corporatisation.
    7 Dihla Investments – Malungani ex P chairman involved
    8.Racing Association – no explanation needed as to who who leads them by the nose.

    These top 8 and in essence, all Cabal members, hold 62.96% of Phumelela shares and as such absolute control exerted. The only good news is that they are burning and long may it last.

  6. Mgram says:

    Bwana Chris Rian du Plessis has substantially downsized his shareholding in Phumelela over the last year.

  7. Chris Swart says:

    If Editor can quote his statement then it becomes a pump and dump which has serious consequences

  8. Chris Swart says:

    While running the business he has steadily bought Phumelela stock and is now its 5th largest shareholder owning 6% of the equity. Will he be selling any shares? “Not unless you bid me at least R50.” That could require a long wait. Yesterday the stock closed at R13.40.

    1. Editor says:

      Just to confirm that Chris is quoting from this Biznews editorial

      https://www.biznews.com/undictated/2018/09/19/departing-phumelela-ceo

  9. Chris Swart says:

    Correct Mr Ed

    Considering the gravity of this statement, my genuine feeling is that the JSE should investigate the probability of a pump and dump.

    If stocks were dumped, the consequences are limited space and bright orange choice of corporate work wear

  10. Steve Reid says:

    Chris Swart do some homework on Lotus Good Investments before assuming things that could land you in very hot water.

    Peruse the shareholding of this entity in Phumelela as at 1 August 2018 and simultaneously check up on W A du Plessis shareholding at the identical date.

    Then do a current shareholding of both in Phumelela, and all will be revealed.

    Don’t mention it legend. Maak oupa styf.

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