SSC Group 10 Year Anniversary
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Aligned with SSC’s story and company vision
Fred was born on 16 November 1973 in the small town of Tulbagh in the Western Cape.
From a young age, he showed great Leadership capabilities by being part of the Church band as well as being Head Boy of his High school and Chairman of the SRC in 1992. He has always believed in hard work and commitment as a road to success. He always looked for opportunities during his school years by washing cars, cleaning yards and looking after properties while teachers went on holiday. From early on he showed entrepreneurial abilities.
He excelled at school which led him to an opportunity to go and study Human Resources at Peninsula Technicon Cape Town in 1993.
His father held numerous jobs to keep the family going, always being an example of leadership, consistency, hard work, dedication and loyalty to his family. Fred’s mother was a domestic worker and also showed the same characteristics. This is where Fred built his character and also his faith in God. His parents were very involved at the local Church. Both Fred’s parents have passed away, but he was raised by them and taught that a person’s impoverished circumstances or past should never determine his or her future. Timeless values including respect, hard work, trust, helping others, believing in God and yourself, were also taught at an early stage in his life.
Through hard work and good results, Fred was recruited by JCI in 1995 which started his career in mining. His in-service commenced at JCI’s Witbank Coal Mines. This was his first time coming to Johannesburg in pursuit of a successful career in HR. JCI allowed him to pursue a degree in Human Resources and Business Management from the University of Technology, Cape Town and UNISA respectively and later a LDP from WITS. JCI also allowed him his first visit underground. Little did Fred know how profound this would be in preparation for the rest of his career. Fred worked at JCI for 4 years. Fred was appointed as Senior Personnel Assistant shortly after his arrival in Witbank. During Fred’s whole career he was always loved by fellow employees. Fred also got married to his beautiful wife, Kaylene, during this period. They were high school sweethearts.
Fred joined Anglo Platinum’s Turfontein shaft in Rustenburg as HR Manager. Here Fred received great exposure to mining and senior management through his hard work and perseverance. He was later HR Manager for both Concentrators and Shafts in Rustenburg.
He worked at the Operations for 5 years after which he was promoted to Corporate Office. Again staff was very fond of him and gave him a great farewell showing their appreciation of his contribution to the mine, but also the lives of employees.
His Corporate Career was very successful at Anglo American Head Office. Fred was appointed as Head of Transformation. He was the youngest executive in such a position and was also on the accelerated path to executive roles within the company. Fred’s whole life was dedicated to work.
During his career at Anglo he always had a hunger to be an entrepreneur who built a black Anglo American as the Oppenheimers did many years ago. He also had a great passion for assisting other entrepreneurs, employees, partner companies – all growing together to achieve a better life and leave a better legacy.
He decided to part with Anglo in 2005 and start his own Company, the company that is known today as Siyakhula Sonke Empowerment Corporation (SSC) – meaning “Together we grow”. He had humble beginnings by turning his garage into a home office.
Today the company is worth a substantial value, consisting of more than 15 subsidiaries in various industries, but yet still focused on servicing a mine. His focus also remained the same, building a company that will not only change his life dramatically, but also that of his staff, partner companies and surrounding communities.
Fred believes that leadership is closely linked to the behaviour of an Eagle (his surname being Arendse). SSC is managed in exactly this manner. Key components of this methodology are:
Eagles have vision. Leaders can only be successful if they have clear and long term vision.
Eagles are fearless. Leaders face all challenges head on without fear and never surrender without a fight.
Eagles are tenacious. Leaders faces storms without hestitation with the aim of reaching great heights.
Eagles never eat dead prey. Leaders surround themselves with staff, partners and networks who are vibrant and passionate about making a change.
Eagles nurture the young.
Leaders grow with their people.
Fred’s role in building a better South Africa is:
He plays an active leadership role for Peace and Stability in the South African Mining Industry.
He also recently served as Process Leader for Peace and Stability at Anglo Platinum, from 2013 until 2015.
Fred enjoys encouraging others to be entrepreneurs and makes inputs on issues facing the mining industry. Fred is a guest speaker at various conferences, notably on topics relating to economic transformation and entrepreneurship.
He spends much of his free time giving back to those who are less fortunate.
Fred has featured in articles published in the “Leadership” magazine as well as in the “Black Business Quarterly” magazine.