On 13th December 2013, as part of the UCT Faculty of Commerce – Ceremony II Graduation, Mr. Gray was awarded an honorary doctorate in Economic Science by the university. The citation in the programme read as follows;
“Allan Gray was educated at Rhodes University and Harvard, where he obtained an MBA. He is arguably the most successful selfmade South African business executive. His pioneering approach to investment and commitment to South Africa’s future mark him as exceptional. He began trading as a one-man company in Cape Town in 1973, basing his investment decisions on the difference between his assessment of the intrinsic value of a company and its share price. Today, his approach is standard practice amongst the investment community and Allan Gray Limited is considered the leading independent investment management firm in South Africa, managing over R400 billion in assets.
He is also a philanthropist who has consistently supported higher education in South Africa. His visionary approach and belief that the encouragement of and support for entrepreneurship is crucial for the future of a prosperous South Africa led in 1979, to the founding of the Allan and Gill Gray Charitable Trust, and in 2005 to the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation. The Foundation supports over 500 selected beneficiaries with full scholarships to attend high school or university. The university beneficiaries participate in a fellowship programme which focuses on the skills, attitude and motivation needed to succeed as a leader, whether as an entrepreneur or otherwise.
The establishment of a Centre and a Chair in Values Based Leadership at UCT’s Graduate School of Business is a manifestation of his belief that the future and sustainability of the South African economy is dependent upon sound, ethical and values based management.”
It was an unusually emotional graduation service conducted under the shadow of a towering image of Nelson Mandela. Madiba’s presence added weight to Mr Gray’s observation in his address, that there is “so little done, so much to do”. It was particularly appropriates that 10 Candidate Allan Gray Fellows were amongst the group of graduates in this ceremony, as immediate examples of the impact that his contribution has made to the country.
View Mr Gray’s full speech on video here