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Leadership

DFA’s leadership team consists of experts from a diverse range of fields and backgrounds. Each of our executive committee members are leaders in their spheres of influence and come with a wealth of knowledge and experience. They bring this to bear in everything we do and in how we proceed as a business. One thing that our leaders all have in common is that we are passionate about developing telecommunications in South Africa, while uplifting and empowering local communities.

Thinus Mulder

Thinus Mulder

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer

Thinus obtained a BCom Accounting Honours degree and a Certificate in the Theory of Accounting from the University of Pretoria in 1989. After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers in 1992, Thinus has held various top positions with SARS, Standard Bank, and the JSE-listed AST Group, where he was the Financial Director. In 2005, he joined the Imperial Group as Financial Director of the Lindsay Saker Group and became Managing Director two years later. He was also a member of the main board of the Imperial Motor Division and served on a number of Audit Committees in the Imperial Group, including the Regent Insurance Group. He joined DFA in 2008.
Jacques Gryzenhout

Jacques Gryzenhout

Chief Financial Officer

Jacques obtained his BCom Accountancy from North West University, South Africa. He completed his post graduate studies (CTA) at Unisa and qualified as a Chartered Accountant.

After completing his articles he joined the CIE Group (now called the CIV Group) in 1999. He took responsibility for overseeing the financials for the services and telecommunication companies within the group and to provide monthly reporting on their progress.

In 2008 he joined the Perago Group, a financial system developer for central banks, as their financial manager. A European bank had the majority of the shareholding, and Jacques managed the full financial function, reporting to the CFO in Italy.

In 2009 he was approached by CZ Electronics Manufacturing (Pty) Ltd, part of the CIV Group, to join them as financial director. After spending eighteen months with CZEM he was requested by the holding company (CIV) to perform some consulting work at MCT Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd.

With the changes in the market and the focus of the CIV Group to disinvest in manufacturing, Jacques was offered the position of CFO for MCT Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd, and joined DFA as CFO in 2020.

Praveen Govender

Praveen Govender

Chief Sales and Marketing Officer

Praveen holds a BSc Electronic Engineering and an MBA from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He has 15 years of extensive ICT experience, spanning telecommunication networks, networking, software, hardware, consulting, and professional services.

He has had ample exposure to turnkey project delivery and that enabled him to get involved in multiple aspects of business, including the development of relationships with major OEM partners, negotiations across the value chain, and exposure to the delivery capabilities of the companies.

Praveen’s most recent roles in senior management include Communications Sector Consulting Lead at IBM, Software Country Manager at HP, and Regional Sales Manager at Cisco. He has also worked for several other multinationals, including Siemens, Alcatel, and Speech Design. He joined DFA in 2016 to head up the sales and client marketing functions.

Andreas Uys

Andreas Uys

Chief Technical Officer

Andreas’s extensive knowledge and experience, which spans 32 years, has allowed him to advance in fixed line networks, mobile networks, microwave technology, satellite technology, and copper and fibre networks. As the Chief Technical Officer of DFA, Andreas is the authoritative figure behind technology selection, network architecture, client advice, layered network solutions, and capital projects.

Andreas qualified as an electrical engineer specializing in light current in 1986. He also completed an Advanced Executive Programme (AEP) at the Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership and obtained a Diploma in Project Management via Executive Training underwritten by Dover University.

Prior to working at DFA, Andreas served a 13-year tenure at Telkom in various roles within the Transmission Division. He then joined Vodacom in 1994 and later headed the Transmission Division as the Managing Executive of Transport Networks until 2012, before taking up his present role as Chief Technical Officer at DFA.

Portia Thokoane

Portia Thokoane

Chief Human Capital Officer

Portia has extensive HR experience spanning a career of close to 17 years in the field. She was a lecturer at the Vaal University of Technology, an HR specialist at Whirlpool SA, an HR manager at SPAR South Rand Distribution Centre, and most recently, Head of HR for the Africa region at global power management company Eaton.

Her qualifications include a BTech in HR Management, Business, Management, Marketing, and related support services, an MBA from the University of South Africa, and a Masters in Management Coaching from the University of Stellenbosch.

Wesley Nash

Wesley Nash

Chief Operations Officer

With close to 20 years’ diverse experience in the telecommunications industry, Wesley has held the position of Acting Chief Operations Officer and later Chief Operations Officer for DFA since October 2016. Wesley is tasked with the strategic direction, management, and control of DFA’s national operations and responsible for setting and achieving the company’s operational strategic objectives and targets.

Wesley’s association with DFA spans more than ten years having joined the company 2007 as Executive Head of Network Operations Centre. Prior to this, he spent a number of years working for major telecomms providers such as Telkom SA.

Wesley holds a Bachelor of Technology Degree in Technical Engineering with an Electronics Specialization, which he obtained from the Tshwane University of Technology. He has also completed an Executive Development Programme with the University of South Africa.

Wesley describes himself as an energetic leader with the ability to envision and create successful outcomes in complex situations.

Vino Govender

Vino Govender

Executive: Strategy, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Innovation

Vino has had a 21-year career in the ICT industry filling key strategic B2C and B2B marketing roles at some of the country’s leading telecoms providers. He led go-to-market-strategy formulation and execution in companies such as Altech, SABMiller, MTN South Africa, Vodacom, and Nokia Siemens Networks.

Vino joined Dark Fibre Africa in January 2015 as Executive: Marketing, Brand, and Communications and his portfolio expanded in March 2017 to include product innovation. In September 2018 he assumed the role of Executive: Strategy, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Innovation.

In addition to his roles at DFA, Vino is a board member and functions as an ecosystem advisor for SqwidNet, a DFA subsidiary in the IoT space and the only Sigfox-licensed operator in South Africa. He is also a Chartered Marketer registered with the Marketing Association of South Africa, and a member of its marketing board subcommittee.

Vino holds a BTech Marketing from the University of Johannesburg as well as a Telecomms Mini MBA from Informica and a Master of Business Administration from Wits University.

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