ShapeShifter

Meet Vuyani Jarana, the brave man tasked with saving SAA

SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana. Picture: YouTube screengrab.

I was born in 1970 in Qunu.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

It’s all about restructuring… you must have no emotion about what it was in the past…

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

If you are in a hole there are not too many ways of getting out…

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

In August, Treasury announced the appointment of Vuyani Jarana as CEO of extremely lossmaking South African Airways (SAA).

Jarana was CEO of Vodacom Business since 2012 where he engineered a successful turnaround.

Jarana grew up in a poor family in rural Transkei.

He had, from a young age, an interest in electronic engineering, but could not go to university.

Instead he got a job as a Transkei Post and Telecommunications Trainee Technician.

Years later he earned his B.Comm. and Master’s degrees.

Today, he has to save what many believe is a terminally ill company.

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed Jarana for his weekly “ShapeShifter” feature.

Listen to the interview in the audio below (and/or scroll down for more quotes from it).

I like big problems.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

My ambition was to do medicine or electronic engineering.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

I’m a through and through telecoms techie, if you like.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

It was a long interview process… it must have been two to three months…

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

It’s a company undergoing a lot of strain today… I’m under no illusions…

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

The brand has a lot of sentimental value.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

We have a clear strategy…

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

In the next two months we’ll have done deep diagnostics of what we’ll have to do.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

You can’t grow by cutting costs only.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

It is a strategic asset.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

It’s important that SAA is self-sustainable.

Vuyani Jarana, SAA

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