Dr Brand Pretorius – Director of companies
Following the attainment of his M.Com degree at the University of the Free State in 1972, Brand started his career at Toyota South Africa in 1973. In 1988 he was appointed managing director of Toyota SA Marketing. Under his leadership Toyota became the leader in both market share and customer satisfaction. In 1995 he joined South Africa’s largest motor retailer McCarthy Motor Holdings as chief executive. In 1999 he was promoted to the position of CEO of the holding company McCarthy Limited. It is widely acknowledged that Brand played a pivotal role in turning McCarthy around after it was declared technically insolvent in 2001, following massive bad debt problems in its Prefcor division. He retired from McCarthy and as an executive director of Bidvest on 1 March 2011.
During his career he was the recipient of numerous national marketing, communication and leadership awards including Marketing Person of the Year, Automobile Man of the Year and Best Boss. He became the first member of the South African motor industry’s “Hall of Fame” in 2006. Brand holds honorary professorships at the University of the Free State as well as the University of Johannesburg. An honorary Doctorate in Marketing was conferred on him by the Durban University of Technology in April 2013. He is currently the non-executive chairman of Italtile and also serves as a non-executive director on the boards of Barclays Africa, Tongaat Hulett, Reunert, RGT Smart and Tata Africa.He is the chairman of Business Against Crime SA, and also serves on the board of the READ Educational Trust. Brand is the ambassador for the acclaimed national Rally to Read literacy program, which he founded in 1998. He has just published his first book “In the driving seat – lessons in leadership”.