Gandy T. Gandidzanwa, managing director of Conceptual Fund Managers, a South African multi-manager, has been appointed an ambassador of the Transparency Task Force (TTF) - becoming the third director of the Association of Professional Fund Investors (APFI) to hold the role, alongside Adam Choppin, who serves as chairman and director of APFI and Jon "JB" Beckett, author of #newfundorder and member of the Advisory Board for APFI, and director from 2014-19.
The TTF was set up as a collaborative and campaigning community of financial professionals, academics, trade bodies and professional associations to improve standards of transparency in financial services globally. It is driven by key beliefs, such as:
- The financial services industry as a whole is profoundly important to the well-being of society
- The financial services industry as a whole has a moral, ethical and professional duty to behave in a transparent, truthful and trustworthy manner
- Small groups of right-minded and collaboratively-minded people who are united by a common cause can drive positive change.
The TTF already has over 100 ambassadors globally, each of whom takes up the position with a brief to act as an evangeliser to the cause, albeit without any specific instructions.
Gandy said: "It is really such an honour to be part of a respectable select group of collaboratively-minded professionals spanning across various disciplines - all carrying the sole mission of bringing back a culture of transparency, truthfulness and trustworthiness into the financial services industry."
"Certainly, the work ahead is huge and is even much more so from an African market perspective. Being the first ambassador to be appointed from Africa brings with it enormous responsibilities. It is truly such a challenge but certainly one that is not insurmountable. Succeeding on this task requires a consistent and unwavering conveying of the values and principles of the Task Force across all the different jurisdictions of the African market. I am really excited and very much look forward to rising to the challenges that lie ahead."
"The focus, henceforth, is on growing the footprint and influence of the Task Force within the African market but to also contribute candidly to key global conversations on what the Task Force stands for."
Gandy is also a director of the UK-headquartered APFI, which advances the interests of investors by promoting professional standards and integrity in fund investing.
APFI is promoting best practices in fund investing by setting global standards of professionalism and accreditation. It is seeking to ensure professional fund investors learn, share ideas and network with their peers, and have a collective voice to national and global standards bodies and regulatory authorities. It is also focused on increasing competitiveness and quality of asset management and fund managers in the funds market.
"As professional fund allocators and asset-manager selectors we have a special role of ensuring that investors get the best value-for-money out of their investments. We certainly see the Transparency Task Force as playing a very strategic role in this endeavor," added Gandy.
"No doubt, it is to the benefit of investors that we have been invited, to be part of this noble cause, both in our capacity as fund allocators in our own right and as directors of the Association. Certainly the two organisations will leverage from each other's experiences, collective wisdom and expertise. I look forward to playing a key role in all of that as we all work together on defining a new future for our industry."
Andy Agathangelou, founding chair of The Transparency Task Force, said: "There is a universal shared belief amongst all right-minded people in and connected to the financial services sector that a great deal of work needs to be done to rebuild trust and confidence. This can only happen when people with an unselfish desire to help drive transformational change find ways to work together, right around the world."
"That's exactly what our network of ambassadors is all about and it is a huge milestone for us to have Gandy as the very first ambassador of the Transparency Task Force in Africa. In Gandy we have an ambassador with exactly the right values, ethics and mindset to help further our cause for finance reform; a cause that is both noble and necessary."
"We hope that Gandy's appointment will help to galvanise support for the framework for finance reform we are building together; all interested parties should reach out without delay - there is a lot to do!"
For further details of the TTF and its work, visit https://www.transparencytaskforce.org/