Home » 5 companies owned by South African tycoon Laurie Dippenaar

5 companies owned by South African tycoon Laurie Dippenaar

Dippenaar: Architect of financial empires and philanthropic visionary

by Feyisayo Ajayi
Laurie Dippenaar

Laurie Dippenaar, a prominent South African business leader and co-founder of FirstRand, stands tall among Africa’s top banking executives and business tycoons. His significant holdings in the financial services giant position him as one of the wealthiest investors on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and a leading figure in South Africa.

As a strategic force behind FirstRand, Dippenaar’s visionary entrepreneurship has left an indelible mark on the South African economy. Serving as the founder and non-executive chairman, he holds a key role in the African financial services industry.

Dippenaar’s impact extends beyond the borders of FirstRand Bank, as he played a pivotal role in establishing a portfolio of premier financial services franchises under the FirstRand Group. This conglomerate includes Rand Merchant Bank (RMB), the corporate and investment bank; First National Bank (FNB), the retail and commercial bank; WesBank, an installment finance provider; and Ashburton Investments, the group’s asset management business.

Beyond his substantial wealth accumulated through strategic investments, Dippenaar is not merely a tycoon but also a revered philanthropist. He is renowned for his scholarship program, showcasing a commitment to giving back.

In addition to his role at FirstRand, Dippenaar has diverse business interests. Here are five businesses identified by Billionaires.Africa in which he holds a stake, either directly or indirectly:

  1. Firstrand
    FirstRand stands as Africa’s leading financial services conglomerate, boasting an extensive portfolio of banking, insurance, and investment products and brands. Co-founded by Dippenaar in the 1990s alongside Paul Harris and Gerrit Ferreira, the group operates in South Africa, the UK, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, Dippenaar, along with his family trust, holds a 1.76-percent stake in FirstRand, valued at an impressive R6.57 billion ($343.26 million).
  1. Rand Merchant Investment Holdings
    Rand Merchant Investment Holdings (RMI Holdings), an investment holding company within the financial services sector, manages insurance brands globally. Dippenaar’s legacy with RMI Holdings traces back to 1977 when he co-founded Rand Consolidated Investing, FirstRand’s predecessor, alongside Paul Harris and Gerrit Ferreira. His ownership stake in RMI Holdings is currently valued at R36.84 million ($1.93 million), showcasing his enduring influence in the financial services arena.
  1. First National Bank
    FNB, a comprehensive financial institution, owes much of its success to Dippenaar’s impactful leadership. The bank provides a wide spectrum of services, including personal, private, business, commercial, and corporate banking, serving a vast customer base across South Africa. Dippenaar’s involvement underscores his multifaceted contributions to the financial sector.
  1. WesBank
    Operating as the installment finance division of FirstRand Bank, WesBank, under Dippenaar’s strategic influence, has positioned itself as South Africa’s largest provider of car loans. As a leading asset-based finance provider, WesBank continues to demonstrate market dominance in meeting personal and business financial requirements in South Africa.
  1. Dippenaar-Family-Trust
    Founded by and Estelle Dippenaar, the Dippenaar Family Trust has emerged as a beacon of support for Stellenbosch University (SU) students. Over two decades, the trust has played a pivotal role in assisting nearly 350 students, providing bursaries to around 15 to 20 students annually. This commitment to fostering future leaders reflects the Dippenaar Family Trust’s enduring impact, enabling students to overcome financial constraints and focus on their academic journeys.

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