Senior finance appointments at footwear giant Bata

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Footwear manufacturer Bata Group has made two senior appointments within its finance function, as it sets out to expand its local business and increase exports across the African market in the next five years.

Bata South Africa’s Finance Director of two years, Saket Mohta, has been promoted to Regional Finance Director – Africa and Middle East Region for Bata Group, and is succeeded by Denise Moodley as the first ever woman Finance Director at Bata South Africa.

Bata – a household name globally with a reputation for affordable, reliable footwear – is well underway in executing the first steps of its 2023 to 2027 strategy which will see it pursuing vigorous expansion and distribution of some of its global sneaker, comfort and outdoor shoe labels to complement local manufacturing.

The company currently produces over five million shoes a year at its manufacturing facility in Loskop, Estcourt in KwaZulu-Natal, one of 21 Bata manufacturing sites worldwide. The Bata Group sells 150 million pairs of shoes each year, has a retail network of over 5,300 stores across more than 70 countries, and employs 32,000 people globally.

Saket Mohta – Regional Finance Director – Africa and Middle East Region for Bata Group

Bata South Africa’s Country Manager, Michael Wyatt, said of Mohta’s new appointment, “Saket has been instrumental in the implementation of strategies that have now set Bata SA on an upward trajectory, with major plans to expand our footprint on the continent. We are grateful for his contributions and wish him well in his new role.”

Mohta is a Senior Finance Executive with more than 20 years of experience and a long and proud history with Bata globally. He previously worked in its biggest region, India, and at its head office in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Mohta added, “I am proud to continue my journey with Bata South Africa, and to leverage the experience I have gained in the Southern African market to drive our business goals in the Africa and Middle East Region. When I landed in South Africa just as the pandemic hit, I knew that I had my work cut out for me with many challenges ahead. But with a very supportive team, we managed to sustain the business during a very difficult economic time, and we are looking forward to the new challenge of expanding our Bata business beyond Africa.”

Denise Moodley – Finance Director at Bata South Africa

Moodley is a qualified CA(SA), an all-rounder whose passion lies in financial management, process improvement, budgeting, and financial strategy.

With over a decade of experience in the manufacturing, FMCG and retail industries, she has previously worked as Group Financial Manager at Africa Sun Oil Refineries (Pty) Ltd and Imana Foods SA (Pty) Ltd, as well as Senior Accountant at Alliott de Witt Saestad Inc.

She said, “Bata South Africa has a long and proven manufacturing history in the country, crafting quality shoes for our local market. It’s a well-respected brand, that I’ve interacted with from a retail perspective. I’m very excited at joining the team, to work behind the scenes to create some of the country’s favourite shoes. I’ll be building on the solid foundation that my predecessor Saket Mohta has laid for me and aim to bring my experience in the manufacturing and retail industries to help grow Bata South Africa further.”