Today we hosted the inaugural OpenPages African Network (OPAN) Summit in Johannesburg, and we’re excited to report that the level of excitement and number of risk management executives in attendance surpassed all expectations. Joining the more than 40 attendees were executives from OpenPages partner IQ Business Group and key South African customers including FirstRand Banking and The Absa Group Limited, two of South Africa’s largest financial institutions.
The success of this event highlights the global reach of OpenPages and the common need for effective enterprise risk management practices across all regions. The discussions focused on best practices for implementing operational risk management frameworks and the wave of regulatory change that is expected to sweep the globe. As we saw with this week’s release of the Walker Review, we can expect extensive reforms and regulation of corporate governance in the banking sector in 2010.
Despite the difference in time zones, the financial services industry in South Africa is facing the same issues as in Europe, Asia and North America. While South Africa’s financial markets did not suffer a meltdown to the same degree as other regions, the country’s leaders and South African Reserve Bank (SARB) are considering similar measures as the North American and European governments to ensure that banks are managing risk proactively. OpenPages is grateful to FirstRand for hosting the OPAN Summit and providing a forum for global risk leaders to discuss such important and timely topics.