Pfanani Lishivha 


Pfanani Lishivha is a results-driven business executive with more than 15 years’ experience in executive management, specialising in the field of collective rights administration and specifically the rights of South African recording artists. His proven management skills are bolstered by his 25-plus years in research and development, as well as in policymaking and regulations drafting. 

Work history and achievements 

Prior to joining SAMPRA as CEO, Pfanani was employed at SAMRO as Executive General Manager: Rights Holder Services (Customer Services). 

Since joining SAMPRA as CEO in 2017, SAMPRA has processed and distributed more than R1.3b of Neighbouring Rights royalties in just under 4 years. He has been responsible for ensuring SAMPRA’s stability. Thanks in large part to his efforts, this comparatively young CMO is competing with the best and oldest Neighbouring Rights CMOs in the rest of the world. It efficiently documents and distributes Neighbouring Rights royalties to recording artists and record companies whose recordings have been performed in public. 

Pfanani has been the driving force behind SAMPRA being accepted as the only African CMO that is a member of SCAPR and IFPI, international federations of Neighbouring Rights CMOs for performers and record companies respectively. SAMPRA participates fully in SCAPR and IFPI meetings and general assemblies, and has concluded more than 50 reciprocal agreements with its international counterparts. 

Under Pfanani’s stewardship, SAMPRA launched the SAMPRA Development Fund (“the Fund”) in August 2020. The Fund’s main aim is to be responsible for SAMPRA’s CSI through support for the music industry in a number of areas including retirement savings and funeral cover for SAMPRA’s performer members, training and professional development for recording artists and independent record companies, music production, touring and travel support, and financing of live performances. Investment in artist and music development is aimed at contributing towards economic growth, music tourism, and attracting and retaining talent and investment in the music and related industries. 

Pfanani has also worked at ICASA as Projects Manager (2000 to 2004), and as Senior Manager: Broadcasting Policy and Research (2005 to 2006). At ICASA, Pfanani led the processes of developing and drafting significant broadcasting policies and regulations. 

Personal attributes 

Pfanani is a great communicator. He is assertive and an excellent mediator in conflict situations. His track record in mediation, conflict resolution and the fostering of harmonious relations with staff and stakeholders is evidence of his tenacity when faced with challenges, as well as his ability to operate and brainstorm solutions under extreme pressure. 

Pfanani is an articulate and compelling public speaker, be it on music industry platforms or in his interactions with the media. Pfanani has gained a robust reputation as a subject matter expert on issues of rights administration and he is a respected commentator in this regard. 

ZASouth Africa
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