Average Chief Executive Officer (CEO) salary in South Africa 2024

average chief Executive Officer salary

The average Chief Executive Officer (CEO) salary in South Africa is R71,800.00 per month. CEOs work at the top of management in various companies across South Africa. The CEOs who work for JSE companies are the highest paid in South Africa.

CEOs are among the highest-paid professionals in South Africa, with annual salaries and bonuses ranging from tens to hundreds of millions of rand. However, with such a high salary comes great responsibility, as the CEO is responsible for making the most important decisions in a company in order to achieve the company’s goals.

CEOs are rewarded for making good decisions. A CEO’s annual bonus in South Africa ranges from R22,000.00 to R993,000.00, excluding those working for publicly traded companies. When including CEOs in the JSE, the average CEO bonus is R2,543,000.00 per year (Salary Expert).

Not all CEOs in South Africa receive bonuses, but the vast majority do. According to Salary Explorer, 86% of CEOs in South Africa receive a bonus, while 14% do not. Those who receive a bonus typically receive between 5% and 9% of their annual salary. A CEO’s salary is determined by a number of factors. These aspects are discussed further below.

Factors that influence the salary of a CEO

Education 

The level of education of a CEO can be important, especially in well-established businesses. CEOs in South Africa are paid differently depending on their level of education, with those with only a high school certificate earning the least. A CEO with a high school certificate earns an average monthly salary of R33,000.00. CEOs with high school certificates earn 24% less than those with a national diploma.

Chief Executives with a Ph.D. earn the highest salaries, with an average monthly salary of R111,000.00. CEOs who hold a Ph.D. earn 63% more than those who hold a master’s degree and 95% more than those who hold a bachelor’s degree. Another factor that influences the salary of a CEO is their level of experience. We look at how the salary of a CEO is influenced by their level of experience below. 

Salary of a CEO based on their level of experience in South Africa 

Salary of a CEO with 0 – 2 years of work experience in 2024 

A CEO with 0 to 2 years of experience can expect to earn R36,600.00 per month on average. Those with 0 years of experience and working for a micro or small business earn the least in this category, with an average monthly salary of R32,200.00. Chief Executive Officers with 2 years of experience earn the highest salaries in this category, with an average monthly salary of R40,200.00.

Salary of a CEO with 3 – 5 years of work experience in 2024

A CEO with 3 to 5 years of experience earns an average monthly salary of R48,900.00. The salary is 34% higher than the national average for CEOs with 0 to 2 years of experience. CEOs with 5 years of experience earn the most in this category, with an average salary of R58,000.00 per month. CEOs with 3 years of experience earn the least in this category, with an average salary of R45,800.00 per month.

Salary of a CEO with 6 – 10 years of work experience in 2024 

A CEO with 6 to 10 years of experience earns an average monthly salary of R72,200.00. The average salary of CEOs with 6 to 10 years of experience is 48% higher than the average monthly salary of CEOs with 3 to 5 years of experience.

Those with 10 years of experience earn the most in this category, earning up to R81,000.00 per month. CEOs with 10 years of experience and a master’s degree can earn even more. CEOs with a high school certificate and 6 years of experience earn the least in this category. These CEOs are paid an average of R63,600.00 per month.

Salary of a CEO with 11 – 15 years of work experience in 2024

A CEO with 11 to 15 years of experience earns an average monthly salary of R88,100.00. The salary represents a 22% increase over the average salary of CEOs with 6 to 10 years of experience. CEOs with 15 years of experience earn the most in this category, with an average monthly salary of R92,500.00.

Those with 15 years of experience can earn between R79,000.00 and R140,000.00 per year, depending on their qualifications. CEOs with 11 years of experience earn the least in this category, with an average salary of R84,100.00 per month. The lowest earners with 11 years of work experience working as CEOs are those with only a high school certificate. 

Salary of a CEO with 16 – 20 years of work experience in 2024 

A CEO with 16 to 20 years of experience earns an average monthly salary of R96,000.00. The salary represents a 9% increase over the average salary of CEOs with 11 to 15 years of experience. CEOs with 20 years of experience are the highest paid in this category, with an average monthly salary of R102,000.00.

Those with 16 years of experience earn the lowest salaries in this category, with an average monthly salary of R93,900.00. CEOs with more than 20 years of experience earn the most money in South Africa. A CEO with a Ph.D. earns more than a CEO with any other degree.

Conclusion 

CEOs are among the highest-paid people in South Africa, with bonuses that can exceed their annual salary if they work for a publicly traded company. Being a CEO is difficult and requires a lot of hard work, which is understandable given that most CEOs have to work their way up the corporate ladder.

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