2021 Invited Speakers

Adrian Gore’s presentation entitled OPPORTUNITY, EXCELLENCE, LEADERSHIP on Wednesday, 20 October at 08:30 AM will address how global trends have the power to transform insurance markets and these have been accelerated by COVID-19. The blurring of boundaries between three big trends – the behavioural nature of risk, the acceleration of technology and the rising importance of purpose and social responsibility – creates a unique opportunity to transform insurance markets from transactional to shared value, and in the process enlarge and broaden the role, scope and impact of actuaries.

Adrian Gore founded Discovery in South Africa in 1992 – with a core purpose “to make people healthier and enhance, and protect their lives”. Discovery is now multinational and is renowned for Vitality, the largest global platform that creates behaviour change and financially integrates this behaviour into insurance and financial services pricing. This pioneering model of insurance – coined Vitality Shared Value – is transforming insurance markets and financial services globally and concurrently making a significant share of the global insured population healthier and extending life expectancy. Discovery listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in 1997 and has a market cap of $4 billion as at 30 June 2020.

Certain global trends have made the Vitality Shared-Value model even more relevant today than in 1992. Given these trends, Adrian through Discovery applied the model to its own companies in the United Kingdom and is now transforming the global market by embedding its model into the world’s largest insurers. This is achieved through an ecosystem of reward partners, technology assets, clinical capabilities, and actuarial data and structures, to help partners integrate behaviour change into products and pricing. The Global Vitality Network includes national insurance champions such as AIA, Generali, John Hancock, Manulife, Ping An Health, Sumitomo Life, IGI and Saludsa and Equivida – representing more than 30% of the global personal protection market, with over 20 million Vitality members, across 23 countries.

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Chris Bertish is a man of many passions. He has set world records, Stand up paddled solo across the Atlantic, surfed monster waves, presented keynote talks to hundreds of thousands across the globe, written best-selling books and directed motion picture documentaries. Somehow, he has still managed to grow multiple entrepreneurial businesses in South Africa and across the world, and to fight for our youth, our planet and our future. A man of many passions, indeed. And one who doesn’t believe in iMPOSSIBLE!
In 2010, Chris made headlines when he won the Mavericks Big Wave Invitational, a surfing competition without rival. Born a skinny kid in Kenilworth, Cape Town, Chris found a way to travel across the world and outwit, outsmart and outperform the world’s best-paid professional athletes – and forever change the face of big-wave surfing. 6 years later, after half a decade of intense training, Chris set out from Morocco, alone, on a stand-up paddleboard, with his sights set on the shores of Antigua in the Caribbean. 93 days, 7500 kilometers and uncountable challenges, terrors, self-doubts and trials later, he crossed the Atlantic Ocean and entered, tanned and bearded, into the Guinness Book of World Records. What is perhaps most inspiring about this tale is not the work of Chris himself, but the 1000 children of the Lunchbox Fund and Operation Smile that he did all of this for. 1000 kids who had been born with cleft palates, who now have had their futures returned to them. He continues to use his adventures to support charities in environmental, humanitarian, educational, sustainability and conservation realms, to bring about tangible positive change and inspire us all to be better human beings.
Both of these adventures have since been told through award winning films and best-selling books, and Red Bull Adventure has touted him as the one who “redefined the concept of extreme adventure.” He has become renowned for his dynamic and inspiring keynote addresses delivered to all corners of the globe, which move audiences to tears, laughter, and change, with a powerful narrative and audio-visual overload that keeps people on the edge of their seats from start to finish. In the last few years Chris has shared the stage with Bill Clinton and George W Bush, has spoken at multiple global TEDx events, the World Economic Forum and the World Wildlife Fund, and has shared his insights with companies like Google, NASA, Southern Wine & Glazer, Coca-Cola, Mercedes Benz, Cisco, and SAP.
With sustainability and his beloved oceans an everlasting part of his heart, Chris takes his roles as Ambassador for the World View Climate Change Parks, Operation Smile, 2Oceans Aquarium and Conservation International very seriously. Through his business he annually plants multiple forests around the world, to offset his own carbon footprint and to be an example to others of the change we wish to see in the world. Chris runs his business as a B Corp Certified business, using what he does as a force for good, while also being 1% for the Planet Certified. More recently, Chris was recognized as one of the Top 5 Speakers in South Africa and selected as one of the Genius 100-Global Visionaries for the future by the Einstein Institute, both for excellence in his disciplines and universal global positive influence. Together with collaborators Deepak Chopra, Sir Ken Robinson, Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Shimon Peres, he is working to inspire the next generation of geniuses. He’s also been a part of a small team working on a new, innovative and forward thinking educational curriculum for the world, called “Ambassadors for the Planet”, which was recently endorsed by the U.N. and will be launched globally in 2021. The goal of this program is to create better humans by teaching kids design and conservation to create a solution driven youth with the planet in mind.
Chris has just finished his new feature film documentary called “Last known Co-ordinates”, launching in 2021 and is currently working on his second book, ‘All in!’, both of which tell the story of his trans-Atlantic journey. He is also working on his new amazing Oceans 17 Project, a massive global undertaking set for 2023-2025, where Chris will be circumnavigating the planet, building schools, delivering the new curriculum and planting forests at 17 unique locations around the world, highlighting 17 of the worlds most endangered species, all of which is tied into the UN’s 17 global SDG’s. And, in true Chris form, he is doing all of this completely powered by nature!
Recent notable events:
• Selected as one of Top 5 Motivational/Inspirational Speakers in Africa
• Selected as one of the Genius 100 Visionaries, by the Einstein Institute, putting him alongside world changers like Deepak Chopra, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Ridley Scott and J Craig Venter
• Selected as one of the Top 10 B Corp Certified organizations globally, as an example of small businesses that are using business to do good for the world.
• Chris and a small team have just finished a new global educational curriculum for Ambassadors for the Planet ( Endorsed by the UN) that will launch globally in 2021, with the aim of creating a more positive, solution-driven, mindful and sustainable thinking youth
• His second feature film, ‘Last Known Coordinates’ launches globally in 2021, and tells the story of his trans-Atlantic Stand up paddle journey
Featured in below media:
New York Times, USA Today, Huffington Post, Time Magazine, BBC, CNN, CNBC News, Fox News, Sky News. WWW.CHRISBERTISH.

Ekhosuehi Iyahen is the Secretary General of the Insurance Development Forum (IDF), a Public-Private Partnership led by the insurance industry and supported by the World Bank and the United Nations, aiming to enhance the use of insurance to build greater resilience against disasters and to help achieve the United Nations Global 2030 Agenda.

Ekhosuehi has extensive experience working with Governments, international development agencies, private sector entities and academic institutions on public financial management and strengthening risk management and financing systems and the role of insurance.

She has been directly involved in establishing and operationalising a number of pioneering initiatives including regional risk pools in Africa (African Risk Capacity), the Caribbean (Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility) and the structuring of a novel tripartite agreement between the IDF, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to increase insurance protection in 20 climate-exposed countries.

She is a graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government and was selected as a 2018 Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Centre Resident Practitioner Fellow.

She serves as an expert advisor to the Centre for Disaster Protection and is a member of the SOAS Centre for Sustainable Finance Advisory Board. She is also a member of High-Level OECD Advisory Group on Loss and Damages from Climate Change and the UNFCCC Warsaw International Mechanism technical experts group on comprehensive risk management.

In 2021 she was appointed a Non-Resident Senior Fellow of the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center.

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Dr Pali Lehohla is the former Statistician-General of South Africa, a position he held from 2000 up to 2017. He served in several global capacities such as co-chair of PARIS21 and Chair of the United Nations Statistics Commission, Chair of the Statistics Commission of Africa (StatCom Africa), Chair of the African Symposium for Statistical Development (ASSD), Vice President of the International Statistics Institute (ISI), and sponsor of the Young African Statistician (YAS) movement. In 2014 he was one of the twenty-five member panel on Data Revolution appointed by the UN Secretary General, and from 2015 to 2018 he was a member of the Independent Accountability Panel of the UN Secretary General for the health of women, children, and adolescents.

Dr Lehohla has been a forceful advocate for improving the Civil Registration and Vital Statistics systems in Africa. He has consulted extensively in in-conflict, out-of-conflict, and fragile states on matters statistics, which has seen him cover Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, and Cambodia to mention a few. His alma mater the University of Ghana recognised him in 2015 for his contribution to the development of statistics, Stellenbosch University awarded him an Honorary Doctorate in 2015, in 2018 the University of KwaZulu-Natal awarded him an Honorary Doctorate, and in 2020 the University of Zululand awarded him an Honorary Doctorate in Science. He is a Professor of Practice in the College of Business and Economics at the University of Johannesburg and a Research Associate at Oxford University.

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Isaah Mhlanga is the Chief Economist of Alexander Forbes. In this position he is responsible for formulating the macroeconomic strategy for the business, which entails identifying systemic economic risks and opportunities that benefit the business and its clients. He contributes to the Alexander Forbes investment process through generating the macro backdrop for asset allocation and the investment committee.

His qualifications include an MCom in Financial Economics, a BCom (Hons) in Econometrics, and a BCom in Economics and Econometrics, all from the University of Johannesburg.

Isaah has 12 years’ experience spanning both public sector and private sector. He started his professional career as an economist at the local office of the International Monetary Fund where he was involved in econometric modelling and monitoring of South African macroeconomic and financial indicators. He also worked at the National Treasury, Absa Capital, and Rand Merchant Bank before joining Alexander Forbes and has lectured undergraduate economics and econometrics at the University of Johannesburg.

Isaah is a Fellow of Economic Research Southern Africa (ERSA) and a columnist for Business Day and Fin24. He was named Economist of the Year in 2019 by the Association of Black Securities and Investment Professionals (ABSIP).

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