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Molome and the art of cutting deals

Ernest Molome
Charismatic long serving Mochudi Centre Chiefs chairperson, Ernest Molome has an immense talent for making money.

The man, popularly known as “Ma-Erno”, amongst his legions of admirers, also functions as a transactional advisor where he brokers multi million pula deals for corporates in need of big funding and other financial services through his company Mamatarz. It is a job he has been doing for more than 15 years now.

It could be a lucrative undertaking, especially for the deal broker, who at the end of the transaction gets his or her commission for a job well done.

Mamatarz is associated with the rise of BOPEU’s business wing, Babereki Investments.

Sometime last year, when the BOPEU business wing needed to raise huge sums of money, P1.2 billion, to be precise, Mamatarz was at hand to broker the deal that eventually saw the business wing and Sanlam in South Africa, putting pen to paper for the funding. Marmatarz’s commission would be three percent of the entire deal.

According to Molome, who established himself as a star advertising executive in the Botswana media landscape in the 90’s and early 2000’s, his company is not only doing transactional advising to BOPEU, but to a host of other corporate entities locally in need of his interventions.

Molome’s company is also credited with another BOPEU transaction that saw the union partnering with a local Samsung phones and gadgets company, Mobile Joint, in a P5 million deal, as a majority shareholder, while his company is also a 15% joint owner of a funeral parlour, Babereki Ka Lorato, with BOPEU and other investors.

Molome says the job of a transactional advisor is not to dupe corporates, get the millions and vanish, leaving those companies in trouble, as some people think.

“Without being specific about any company, people ought to understand that my duty as the transactional advisor is to finally bring transacting parties together to handle or conclude the deal between themselves, after that I’m done with

my job I want my commission.”

Asked to comment on the P1.2 billion deal with BOPEU, what happened after the transacting parties signed their agreement he said: “There are confidentiality issues here, a lot of confidentiality, but as a transactional advisor, without mentioning anyone, I have the records. My company is rewarded according to the contract I signed with the client. I simply bring reputable parties together and they sign between themselves, and deal between themselves. But if the issue goes into the open, we will avail the records to prove we are clean. No, we don’t dupe anyone. The trust the clients have in us have served us well for decades now as a company,” Molome said.

As one of the few Batswana in the field of transactional advice services, Molome says he is disappointed that there are still some who think that this is a kickbacks job. “Unfortunately, there are still some amongst us who look down upon their own and think that it only takes kickbacks and bribes to do what I am doing, but if it is a white man doing what I am doing, or a South African company, they are not accused of the same,” Molome said.

According to Molome, it is high time Batswana stand up to support their own, as well as growing the industry of transactional advising, because according to him, many Batswana can create real wealth out of the service, although he admits it also requires connections and trust with funders and other transactional advisors.

Molome is not new to this field having also been involved over 10 years ago with a transaction that involved provision of medical cover for Batswana students studying in South Africa.

He is also linked with bringing medical aid company, Momentum Life to Botswana, along with his old journalist friend, the late Tshimologo Boitumelo.




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