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Thread: Exit strategy

  1. #1
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    Default Exit strategy

    One of the more useful things I have learned in business school is a well-planned and timeous exit strategy. Get out as soon as you recognise a mortal failure in any endeavour, and never throw good money after bad.

    Which brings me to where South Africa currently teeters (which is an optimistic view) on the edge of an abyss. Billions of Dollars have been stolen by the current ruling elite, with a healthy cut going to corrupt, Dubai based Indian businessmen that orchestrated it. Read it up if you are bored and have time to waste. This while the unemployment rate is approaching 30%, the poorest have nothing to eat and violent public protests are as common as anti-Trump threads here.

    Our esteemed President, whom is a billionaire in his own right (not earned through any business acumen but rather Black Economic Empowerment deals, which always come as a cost to someone) has announced on 31 July that the Constitution will be amended to legalise expropriation of white people’s property without compensation. This on the premise that it has been stolen from the original inhabitants, starting 1652, and must be returned to black people.

    Of course, first port of call is the agricultural land. With unusual efficiency 139 farms have been identified for the first round, and if you have guessed that it would not be fertile, virgin agricultural land, you would be 100% correct. These are all highly productive farms that contributes to most of the country's produce output, with shiny new tractors and huge budgets, which have naturally caught the attention of the greedy comrades. Boring, you have seen it all before in Zimbabwe and Venezuela.

    But I digress. I am about four years from retirement and my two kids are (mostly) independent and on the juncture of leaving these shores forever anyway. I own a house inland and a 5 hectare plot with nothing on it near the coast. Both bought and payed for through 20 year loans with title deeds and all the other (now irrelevant) paperwork, by the way. How do I change these into moveable assets?
    I am thinking to sell it all off, including a half built boat and many tools. As you may have guessed, the market is already depressed and I stand to make substantial losses on it. However, it is better than losing all of it. And of course, because of the resultant flee of capital from here, there are strict laws in place that severely restrict offshore investments for SA citizens.

    I am thinking to use the proceeds to buy the biggest yacht I can afford which gives me a moveable asset and I can take some value with me. My wife was born in Namibia (thank god) and at least we have a five year window there to get citizenship.

    Any flaws in my thinking?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Too little info to speak intelligently. Don't know Namibia at all, so can't say if that would be a smart landing spot. If I were in your shoes, I'd be thinking of somewhere else entirely. Denmark? New Zealand?

    Do you have honest fee-based financial planners available to you? Might be a good place to start strategizing.

    And... I weep for your nation - the current iteration of which started with such tender tentative promise.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    a well-planned and timeous exit strategy
    Things like that have a tendency to get worse before they get better - civil war for example.

    Sooner sounds better. Best of luck to you and yours.
    The best statement I've seen from this latest carnage came from a student who lived through it -

    "My generation will not allow this to continue!"

    Remember voting age is 18. Read it and weep reds.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    So sad to watch the decline of the SA government. I recall the surge of enthusiasm and hope for the future when Nelson Mandela first came to power.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by mmd View Post
    So sad to watch the decline of the SA government. I recall the surge of enthusiasm and hope for the future when Nelson Mandela first came to power.
    The mythology of the African Gandhi was always mired by the South African Communist Party leader Nelson Mandela's ex-wife, an enthusiastic supporter of “necklacing,” which involves putting a tire soaked in gasoline around a victim's neck, and then lighting it on fire. The slow, agonizing torture is one of the most horrendous ways to murder people known to man. When the murder trial of the 14 year old Stomp Sepei by Winnie, slitting the throat of the boy with a pair of scissors didn’t deter the worlds admiration for the hope which so many put on the man, the wife who was viscously ruthless and his dangerous supporters who let the tensions boil just below the surface.
    King Moonraiser:
    A toy is never truly happy until it is loved by a child.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    I take it that you didn't care for Madiba, Ted?
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    My step father left Sth Africa in 1928 because of the treatment of the black and coloured Africans by the whites. His Huguenot ancestors had been in the cape since 1640 and were very wealthy, but he was a socialist.
    But if anyone asked he always said, very proudly, that he was African.

    It does not look good for SA at present, I meet SA migrants here quite often, the reasons now are not the same as the reasons during the apartheid era of course. Very few seem to have managed to transfer assets as well, but then that has been the situation for a very long time.
    Best of luck, and keep safe.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by mmd View Post
    I take it that you didn't care for Madiba, Ted?
    Interesting you called him Madiba. That is a political statement which works to flatten the colonial legacy.

    Desmond Tutu was a decent enough fellow and proved to be quite kind and wise. Met him and Bono of U2 one sunday morning at Glide Memorial Church here in San Francisco in the mid 80s. he was full of hope and carried a good message of healing. Bono was cool. Rockstar and revolutionary side by side.
    Last edited by Ted Hoppe; 08-09-2018 at 04:55 PM.
    King Moonraiser:
    A toy is never truly happy until it is loved by a child.


  9. #9
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    Too little info to speak intelligently. Don't know Namibia at all, so can't say if that would be a smart landing spot. If I were in your shoes, I'd be thinking of somewhere else entirely. Denmark? New Zealand?

    Do you have honest fee-based financial planners available to you? Might be a good place to start strategizing.

    And... I weep for your nation - the current iteration of which started with such tender tentative promise.
    Doubt if many financial advisors have experience in these types of situations.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    I disagree, Ted. AFAIK, 'Madiba' is a Southern African a title of respect for Nelson Mandela, deriving from his Xhosa clan name. Nothing political at all.

    From Quora: Madiba is a clan name for the Mandela surname. Mandela being the surname to Nelson Holihlahla Mandela. The Xhosa tribe same like the Zulus and other tribes, would have a surname which is a family name (like most nations) then also have tribe names which would be the names of the family men in the history of the family.

    But you side-stepped my question.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    You've left it at least 30 years too late, but yes, cut and run while you can.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by mmd View Post
    I disagree, Ted. AFAIK, 'Madiba' is a Southern African a title of respect for Nelson Mandela, deriving from his Xhosa clan name. Nothing political at all.

    From Quora: Madiba is a clan name for the Mandela surname. Mandela being the surname to Nelson Holihlahla Mandela. The Xhosa tribe same like the Zulus and other tribes, would have a surname which is a family name (like most nations) then also have tribe names which would be the names of the family men in the history of the family.

    But you side-stepped my question.
    Madiba is the word reserved for respected old black (tribal) men.

    Mandela's story is one of resilience by design to reaffirm faith in black self determination, greater wish for equality and respectful call to granting a man his due dignity. His mythology was no doubt great. As a beat down, old, tired leader, he could only lead by example in a grandfatherly way. The horrible racism of the white africans and pent up resentment of educated blacks has remained in conflict snce his release and through the numerous election cycles.


    In the dozens of african countries since the founding of the modern african states has yet to produce an enduring stable and trusted democratic government in some of the most futile and diverse geographies of the planet. Terror, chaos and corruption in the very institutions are what drives these peoples into the continued diaspora.
    King Moonraiser:
    A toy is never truly happy until it is loved by a child.


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    Too little info to speak intelligently. Don't know Namibia at all, so can't say if that would be a smart landing spot. If I were in your shoes, I'd be thinking of somewhere else entirely. Denmark? New Zealand?

    Do you have honest fee-based financial planners available to you? Might be a good place to start strategizing.

    And... I weep for your nation - the current iteration of which started with such tender tentative promise.
    Namibia is a fairly stable country. The fact that there are only 2 million inhabitants and it is geographically larger than Texas, helps. But good point, "President for life and steal as much as you can" is a syndrome that has migrated quickly across borders in Africa. Thing is, we have a five year window there. Showing up in Denmark or New Zealand if you are not a bona fide refugee (yet), will get you kicked out pretty smartly.

    Of course, when capital started to flee the country treasury put into place very strict rules, and I have explored the legal ways of moving money offshore exhaustively. No wiggling room there.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Y View Post
    You've left it at least 30 years too late, but yes, cut and run while you can.
    True. But then, 20/20 hindsight is an easy thing. I have many friends who left decades ago, mostly to Australia and Canada. But there is always a price. One friend has been driving a bus for 12 years, while I have a very fulfilling career in a multinational company. I wouldn't have wanted to miss that for many reasons. There are always compromises, but I agree he is better off.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by devout View Post
    True. But then, 20/20 hindsight is an easy thing. I have many friends who left decades ago, mostly to Australia and Canada. But there is always a price. One friend has been driving a bus for 12 years, while I have a very fulfilling career in a multinational company. I wouldn't have wanted to miss that for many reasons. There are always compromises, but I agree he is better off.
    Is it possible for your company to transfer you aboard?

    Nick

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Australia is a great place to drive a bus.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by devout View Post
    I have explored the legal ways of moving money offshore exhaustively. No wiggling room there.
    Gold and jewels are the smuggler's friend

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Now if aunty Addie had still been with us there'd be no problem. She was married to a DeBeers inheritor and getting anything out of SA never seemed a problem. Just add money or the Diplomatic Bag. But that of course was under the old regime, I imagine the price has gone up.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    In France recently I met a lovely older couple from SA, very well to do and polite. They showed me pictures of their children and grandchildren. I asked them straight out what is the future of their grandchildren in SA, and the gentleman didn't answer directly but just smiled and said that he was "an optimist."

    We have friends near here, sisters, that grew up in SA as children of an American father and a Rhodesian mother. They follow the news events in SA, where they have many friends and relatives, with a deep sense of fear and despair.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    Too little info to speak intelligently. Don't know Namibia at all, so can't say if that would be a smart landing spot. If I were in your shoes, I'd be thinking of somewhere else entirely. Denmark? New Zealand?

    Do you have honest fee-based financial planners available to you? Might be a good place to start strategizing.

    And... I weep for your nation - the current iteration of which started with such tender tentative promise.
    Quote Originally Posted by peb View Post
    Doubt if many financial advisors have experience in these types of situations.
    Given his location, and the slow-rolling nature of his nation's circumstance, I'd be surprised if there weren't.

    But even if there aren't financial planners with expertise directly related to his precise circumstance... having a fresh, unbiased, unemotional set of eyes looking at his situation would, I suspect, be quite useful. And developing a clear picture of your financial situation is always a good place to start when making a large life change.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    I plan to buy the biggest yacht I can afford and sail away. Any flaws in my thinking? Nope. None at all. Always a good plan.

    More seriously, best check whether you will be up for import duty at your destination and allow for that.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Exit strategy

    Years ago I met some South Africans who had a large yacht that even back then they said that was virtually their only means of transferring their wealth out of South Africa. I didnt ask about diamonds etc.
    There is nothing quite as permanent as a good temporary repair.

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