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Former Deputy Pension Funds Adjudicator takes the reigns as CEO of Salt Employee Benefits

Advocate Matome Thulare has been named Chief Executive Officer of Salt Employee Benefits (Salt EB), a company that provides intelligent employee benefits solutions to retirement funds. This comes after serving as an independent consultant to Salt EB working in legal, risk, and compliance space for the past 17 months.

The announcement was made to external stakeholders on Friday, 8 September 2023 at Salt EB’s new headquarters in Midrand.

“Matome is an immense asset to have on board given his extensive experience in the financial services sector. We’ve seen the many positive benefits of his knowledge and leadership abilities since appointing him as an independent consultant, and look forward to the considerable value that he’ll bring to the team as the CEO,” said outgoing Salt EB CEO, Eddie Strydom.

Advocate Thulare is well-versed in employee benefits and South Africa’s regulatory landscape. As a former regulator with the Financial Services Conduct Authority who later served as the Deputy Pension Funds Adjudicator, he has been involved in policymaking in the retirement space for two decades, and has a deep passion for serving others.

After studying law and obtaining several qualifications, including three Master of Laws (LLM) in Constitutional Interpretation, Municipal Law, and Social Security, Labour Law, and Consumer Protection, Thulare began his career as an analyst at the Financial Services Board (FSB). He quickly rose through the ranks and occupied various managerial roles, and headed up the first Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services (FAIS) enforcement department. At the end of 2015, he was called to the bar and practised law for three years before re-joining the public service as the Deputy Pension Funds Adjudicator.

“This is a new chapter in my career as I transition from being in the regulatory space to the market side, and I am sincerely looking forward to the new opportunity and challenges that the role may bring. But I hope that through drawing on my skills and experience, Salt EB will likewise enjoy an even more prosperous chapter, building on the success of Eddie Strydom’s tenure. I look forward to sharing in the spirit of ubuntu that is encapsulated in the company’s ethos,” noted Adv. Thulare.

Although the position came as a surprise to Adv. Thulare, he was happy to accept as he feels aligned with Salt EB’s values and feels that the company has enormous potential as a game changer within the South African retirement fund space.

“I plan to take time to fully understand the organisation by talking to employees, stakeholders, and the board before I craft a vision for the future of Salt EB. I strongly believe in the importance of teamwork and collaboration, and will work closely with the leadership to develop new strategies. Harnessing the available talent will foster capable teams that are inspired to drive our mission.

“It is important that we continue to improve efficiencies and allow consolidation before embarking on a growth trajectory of Salt EB. We need to understand clients’ pain points and to work even harder to exceed their expectations to remain relevant,” said Adv. Thulare.

He noted that there are numerous challenges currently facing the local retirement fund industry, but asserted that Salt EB is uniquely positioned to remain competitive in the industry.

“Salt EB’s uniqueness lies in our ability to leverage innovation and technology to achieve sound administration.

The appointment of Adv. Thulare is a testament to Salt EB’s commitment to putting its members first by bolstering the knowledge and experience of its leadership.