‘I have made some big mistakes’

Markus Jooste pens letter to Steinhoff staff.
Picture: Moneyweb

Markus Jooste was quick to send a note to Steinhoff employees after he resigned. In this letter, he acknowledges that he made “big mistakes” and caused financial loss to many people. The full letter reads as follows:

Hi there,

Firstly I would like to apologise for all the bad publicity I caused the Steinhoff company the last couple of months.

Now I have caused the company further damage by not being able to finalise the year-end audited numbers and I made some big mistakes and have now caused financial loss to many innocent people.

It is time for me to move on and take the consequences of my behavior like a man.

Sorry that I have disappointed all of you and I never meant to cause any of you any harm.

Please continue to live the Steinhoff dream and I must make it very clear none of Danie [van der Merwe – COO], Ben [la Grange – CFO], Stehan [Grobler – executive Group Treasury and Financing] and Mariza [Nel] – Corporate Services, IT & HR] had anything to do with any of my mistakes.

I enjoyed working with you and wish you all the best for the future.

Best regards


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Another retailer down the drain. Wonder when they declare bankruptcy. Ceo moves on, what does he care, he’s made his millions.

He needs to understand the inner working of prison because he as well as the rest of his inner clan were busy with this mess years ago. They have really destroyed many innocent peoples life savings.

He can’t just say that he made mistakes, he did exactly what Bernard Madoff did and Madoff served jail time.

Whatever he did, it must have been a proper clanger

Who are the auditors? Not KPMG I hope.

Lol just what I was thinking, its actually Deloitte whose gonna have some explaining to do since prior year results ate going to be restated. Wiese just lost serious wonga, did he scam himself 🙂

There is a conspiracy theory that the issues aren’t that serious and the whole thing has been set up so that Wiese can hoover up the shares on the cheap…

Given their track record, if it was KPMG we would never have heard about these irregularities

Makes the Guptas look like cherubs

When can we expect to get this kind of open and honest comment from our President? While this is a massive meltdown when has any politician fronted-up to the people (like Jooste is doing to shareholders and staff) and admitted fault.

I doubt there’s honesty in this statement, more like a cover up. He wants us to believe the shenanigans were a one man show? The CFO had no knowledge of accounting irregularities..?


Has the authenticity of this letter to staff been verified?

Steinhoff was a 25% holding of my total portfolio holding. It was hell breaking loose this past few days, especially this morning when Steinhoff’s hare price plummeted. I sold everything at R17.

Just kidding thank god i did not have a cent in Steinhoff XD
On a more serious note, i feel for the innocent people who lost a lot due to the Steinhoff’s disaster. I also blame the so called ” experts ” on Business Day TV who have been recommending Steinhoff for the past few weeks. Also notice Steinhoff’s volume leading up to today’s news. (Some) people knew this storm coming, sold their shares and ran. Again, we the ordinary investors have been back stabbed.

Now we wait for Koos Bekker

What a useless lamb brained response to the enormous damage these egos have caused many innocent pensioners and people who have followed the share in good faith. Ok for him to say tra la la with his hundreds if millions while the rest of us are to old to recover from this enormous setback. They should go directly to jail

Shoplifters are treated worse than these divas. The repercussions must match the damage caused.

South African businessmen are are definitely not exceptional…tip of the iceberg.
Majority of corporates on the JSE involved in similar irregular practice.

Majority? Really? You must be well connected…

What is so hard about telling the truth.

When you can’t get financials out then you are just worried about trying to make lies stack up.

My comment is not published, again 🙁

His actions over the last year are typical of a person with a cocaine habit. “Euphoria, Overconfidence, Unusual excitement, Aggressiveness, Paranoia, Poor judgment, Delusions”

When your habit has a negative effect on other people, it is a sign that your habit has become a problem.

Could also be NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder).

And what would the consequences of your behavior exactly, besides the millions you have made off this fraud. R10.5k loss might mean a few premium whiskey shots to you, but to me it is a lot of money. I hope you see the inside of a jail, or alternatively happen to step in front of my double cab. It is 1 percenters like you who happily destroy the lives of people just trying to get by in order to accumulate another R100 mil. or whatever in order to stroke your ego.

He deserves a lengthy jail sentence if found guilty of any fraudulent activities related to Steinhoff. Shareholders suffer but yet he walks away with millions.Taking responsibility is not enough.He needs to suffer the consequences as well if found guilty

You wish. With the amount he has available for legal fees he would make Gary Porritt look like an amateur. Probably plenty locked up in trusts as well.

The only comforting thing will be for Markus to do some time behind bars. This letter offers no comfort at all.

I have to confess that I attended the same school as Markus Jooste. We were not friends because he is two years older then me. Although he allowed some of my friends and I to swim in their pool on occasion. But he didn’t allow you to use their towels. Either you brought your own or you dried in the sun.

I have had no contact with the man since school, but I have heard that his protective behave or with regard to towels carried on. Apparently, when he would visit one of the company owned guesthouses he would insist on using a towel only once.

So I never invested in Steinhoff. This type of behavior seemed too weird for me. As was his proclivity for bodyguards wherever he went.

I wonder if he will now, like the rest of us, be forced to stop throwing away his bath towels, after using them only once…?

Interesting comment made by Jooste when he was interviewed in 2015 regarding his horse racing and breeding operations – he stated that he runs his horse business like he runs his business operations – maybe there is a need to attach all his horses as collateral for his misdemeanours

Like everything else, this too shall pass.

May it not be at the expense of those who believed in this psychopath with their hard-earned cash.

That letter sounds like a suicide note…

Jooste, with his open admission in this letter, (if not a fake letter) should be sued in his personal capacity and his ill gotten millions in Swiss bank / Panama or wherever hell they hide their money should be exposed.

What makes me more suspicious of the others Jooste is trying to protect are just as guilty.

This letter is mostly like fake!

End of comments.



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