Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., the monolithic state-owned South African power utility that’s grappling with an unsustainable debt load and chronic operational problems, has advertised for a new chief executive officer two months after Phakamani Hadebe announced he’d vacate the post.
The job is probably one of South Africa’s most challenging — it entails overseeing a company that supplies about 95% of the nation’s electricity, has more than 47,600 employees and revenue of 190 billion rand ($13.6 billion) yet isn’t selling enough power to cover its costs.
Hadebe said he would quit at the end of this month because the role comes with “unimaginable demands” that have taken a toll on his health.
The new CEO is required to have experience overseeing “significant change in a complex organization with at least 20,000 employees and an annual turnover in excess of 30 billion rand,” Eskom said in its advertisement.
He or she will also play a leading role in restructuring the utility, including implementing plans to split it into generation, distribution and transmission units under a state holding company.
“A competitive executive-level package will be tailored to attract the right calibre candidate, subject to approved remuneration and incentive guidelines,” Eskom said.
Other requirements include a university degree, ideally at a post-graduate level, 20 years work experience and strong commercial acumen, while experience and expertise in the engineering, construction and energy fields will be an advantage. Applications close on Aug. 2.