Property Flash


Embattled sugar group Tongaat Hulett has appointed Dan Marokane as acting chief executive officer (CEO) following Gavin Hudson’s resignation.

Tongaat is in a world of pain following a multi-billion Rand accounting scandal and is languishing in business rescue. Its business rescue practitioners are trying to save around half a million jobs and their families’ livelihoods. Tongaat was unable to meet debt repayments at the end of 2022.

Previous management was involved in a host of alleged fraudulent accounting irregularities by the previous board which took place between 2015 and 2018.

Gavin Hudson who resigned at the end of January, was appointed as an acting CEO to replace Peter Staude who is facing a plethora of fraud charges related to sales of the sugar producer’s land. Tongaat owns very valuable land and has property development arm. It was considering listing a separate real estate investment trust (Reit) with an emphasis on owning properties in KwaZulu-Natal.

Hudson has been looking at methods of reducing the company’s large debt pile which could include the sale of the company to an offshore buyer.

The business rescue practitioners (BRPs) are working on a business rescue plan which is expected at the end of February, when Hudson will leave office.

Marokane has been with the company since 2018 and is the sugar producer’s chief business transformation officer. He was appointed as an executive director at Tongaat Hulett in 2019 and has been the chairman of Hippo Valley Estates Limited, a Zimbabwean subsidiary of the company.

“He played an important role in internal cash flow optimisation programmes and the management of the company’s asset disposals,” said Tongaat Hulett BRP spokesperson, Heidi Geldenhuys, in a press statement.

Marokane has worked in executive roles across the oil and gas and agro-processing industries over the past 20 years.

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