Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene congratulated Argon Asset Management as a firm leading transformation in the financial sector at its tenth year celebration in Johannesburg last Friday night.

CAPTION: Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene gave a key-note address at Argon Asset Management’s ten year celebration. Nene said that Argon were “the embodiment of transformation” in the financial sector. Photographer: Monique De Paiva

In a key-note address Nene called for increased transformation. “It is important that more black fund managers make real strides in transforming the financial sector.”

“Transformation of the financial sector is an important part of Government’s vision,” said Nene who added that he knew he was “preaching to the converted” at Argon. “I salute and congratulate you on your achievements and wish you many more decades of success.” He said that wealth creation should not be reserved for the privileged few and called for transparent, fair and ethical behaviour among financial managers.

Treasury’s intention to transform the retirement industry was a priority, said Nene who raised concerns over the automatic default in South Africa to withdraw pension when changing jobs. “South Africans do not save sufficiently for retirement or for the long haul,” said Nene. He said that new, young, dynamic and transformed asset managers had a role to play in creating a financial market that is “more inclusive.”

Nene congratulated Argon on a “stream of accolades,” describing the firm as “the embodiment of transformation.” Argon won Best Investment Management Company in Africa at the Global Banking and Finance Review Awards in February this year and has been nominated in four of the 2015 Batseta Imbasa Yegolide Awards categories to be announced on 01 June 2015 (Best Equities Manager, Best Bond Manager, Best Absolute Return Manager and Most Responsible Investment Manager).

Ten years since its inception Argon now manages R27 billion in client assets. The firm which offers listed strategies in equities, fixed income and the multi-asset class is also expanding into the retail space.  It also offers global strategies in association with its venerable global investment management partner, Schroders Investment Management.

Argon Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder Mothobi Seseli reflected on the past decade: “I had a vision of building a black owned and managed firm that could become a force for good in our country.” Seseli said that establishing Argon in an extremely competitive environment had not come easily. “It has been incredibly challenging to break down traditional barriers to entry however we have built a strong track record and worked really hard to achieve excellence for clients who have confidence in us,” said Seseli.

“Custodians of wealth should not be exclusive, as in the past. In fact, for meaningful change, they need to be more inclusive and representative of our society today,” said Seseli who emphasised the importance of upholding values of ethical behaviour and establishing trust relationships with clients.

The glittering celebration, with entertainment from artist Busisiwe Mawelele, was attended by Executive Chairman of Shell SA, Bonang Mohale and government officials including Deputy Minister of Public Service and Administration, Ayanda Dlodlo, Minister of Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa and Lesetja Kganyago, Governor of the South African Reserve Bank. Kganyago described Argon as an example of “global best practice” and said that the evening was a “celebration of black excellence.”

UN Women Executive Director and Former Deputy President, Dr Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka conveyed her best wishes to Argon. “Mothobi, you stand head and shoulders above your counterparts in the financial sector.” Michael Dobson, CEO of Schroders – Argon’s international partner which was founded in 1805 – congratulated Seseli on leading Argon through its first ten years. “We look forward to a long and successful relationship with Argon,” said Dobson.


For more information about Argon Asset Management, please contact 021 670 6570 or email or visit the website