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Sharemax-tarnished official agrees to leave FSB

Wife of Sharemax director leaves FSB after unflattering media coverage.

JOHANNESBURG – The Financial Services Board (FSB) and one of its officials, who has been linked to Sharemax, have agreed to part ways. The official in question is Rinate Goosen, a manager in the FSB’s Fais enforcement division. Rinate Goosen is the wife of former Sharemax director Gert Goosen. She is also the former compliance officer for controversial company FSP Network, which traded as Unlisted Securities South Africa (USSA).

USSA was started by Gert Goosen as a company that provided its representatives with the necessary licence to sell Sharemax products. USSA has received severe criticism by Fais Ombud Noluntu Bam, who has described USSA’s business as “nothing short of the hiring out of a licence for a small monthly fee.”

One of the most astonishing things to emerge from the USSA debacle is the sheer number of brokers who were operating under its licence. USSA had literally hundreds of broker representatives yet only one key individual, Gert Goosen, and one compliance manager, Rinate Goosen. The Fais Ombud wrote: “How it was possible to train and supervise this number [of representatives] is beyond explanation.”

Bam continued: “[USSA] abused the [Fais] Act to take advantage of a loophole which effectively allowed unlicensed FSPs to sell risky investments to an unsuspecting public.”

Bam found Gert Goosen and three other Sharemax directors liable for the loss suffered by investor Gerbrecht Siegrist.

The determination does not cast the Goosens in a particularly good light. It seems reasonable to ask whether Rinate Goosen is the appropriate person to hold a senior position at the FSB.

Despite the damning determination, the FSB has defended its employee. Deputy registrar for financial services providers Gerry Anderson has described Goosen as “well qualified and extremely competent”. See: FSB stands by Sharemax-tarnished official.

On Thursday March 14, the FSB and Rinate Goosen issued a joint media release. The release cannot be found in the media release section of the FSB’s website. However it was published in Die Burger on Friday.

In the release, Goosen and the FSB acknowledge that negative media publicity surrounding Goosen’s previous association with USSA has impaired the public’s perception of the regulator’s independence.

The FSB said when Goosen was re-employed, it was aware of Goosen’s previous job as a compliance officer of USSA, and did not find any shortcomings in her original written disclosure. 

“The FSB recognizes that Mrs Goosen disagrees with the views and opinions of the Fais Ombud reflected in the Siegrist determination, and Mrs Goosen has stated that the respondents intend to appeal.”

The media release states: “The opinion of the Ombud, with which Mrs Goosen and the appellants disagree, is that Sharemax was a Ponzi scheme, that USSA rented out its licence, that USSA was an extension of Sharemax investments, that USSA engaged unqualified persons as its representatives, and that there were grounds (alleged fraud and reckless behavior) to pierce the corporate veil with respect to USSA and Sharemax Investments.

“The FSB believes that, based on her previous and current service at the FSB, Mrs Goosen is an exceptional employee and the FSB would recommend her to any prospective employer.

“However, because of the negative impression caused by her association with USSA, the FSB and Mrs Goosen have agreed that the FSB’s operational requirements necessitate the termination of her contract.”

The media release did not state whether Goosen received a golden handshake.

The table below summarises Goosen’s career over the past 22 years. 

A 22-year summary of Rinate Goosen’s carreer
1991 Rinate Goosen joins FSB
1999 Willie Botha starts Sharemax
Rinate Goosen leaves FSB to become compliance manager for Stanlib
2004 Gert Goosen’s USSA is licenced with the Financial Services Board. Rinate Goosen is its compliance officer
USSA offers brokers a solution to Sharemax brokers who require a licence to sell property syndication schemes
The solution costs R150 a month
At its peak, USSA had more than 600 broker representatives yet only one key individual and one compliance officer
This raises questions about USSA’s ability to supervise so many representatives
2005 Gert Goosen is appointed a director of Sharemax
2008 FSB issues notice 104 of 2008 which requires financial services providers to “directly supervise” representatives who sell shares and debentures
2009 Sharemax collapses
2011 Rinate Goosen rejoins FSB as a manager in the Fais enforcement department
26-Sep-12 Fais Ombud Noluntu Bam describes USSA’s business as ““nothing short of the hiring out of a license for a small monthly fee”. 
14-Oct-12 Moneyweb identifies FSB’s links to USSA 
13-Nov-12 Moneyweb reports on a scheme operated by Gert Goosen which pays investors 13% a year. 
The FSB claims Gert Goosen’s licenced financial services business, Preston Financial Solutions, is “dormant”
29-Jan-13 Bam finds four former Sharemax director’s liable for a loss suffered by an investor, Gerbrecht Siegrist
Bam’s determination is scathing about USSA’s alleged abuse of the Fais Act. 
6-Feb-13 The FSB’s Gerry Anderson stands by Rinate Goosen, describing her as “well qualified and extremely competent” 
12-Mar-13 The Ombud’s office confirms that the Sharemax directors have applied for leave to appeal her determination
14-Mar-13 The FSB and Rinate Goosen issue a joint media release announcing the termination of Rinate Goosen’s contract. 

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