A eureka moment in last-minute research

Christo Snyders likely speaks for many when he says that retirement seemed to sneak up on him. “There I was, almost as in the proverbial blink of an eye, four months from retirement age with crucial decisions to be made,” he says.

Christo, who is a “very youthful 65”, said his first idea was “to remain with the very reputable company (100 years of age) where my investments were, and go for a normal Life Annuity”. But his “sceptical yet very wise” daughter suggested he do some serious research before making a final decision.

The labour relations expert agreed it would be a good idea to choose carefully and had a “thorough look” at a number of service providers, but “the multitude of investment options just made me feel totally out of my depth”.

Again, Christo probably speaks for many, but it is worth noting that his confusion came despite “having been involved in the assurance industry for many years”.

Having started his career as a junior lecturer at Potchefstroom University (now the University of the North-West) Christo later moved to the private sector as an HR practitioner and specialised in labour relations. After gathering a couple of decades experience he struck out on his own and registered a close corporation. He worked as intermediary with a group life cover scheme at a bargaining council in Johannesburg, which covered 18 000 employees “during the good years”.

It’s not been all work for Christo, who has been married to Marie for almost 40 years. They have two grown-up children and a grandson and a granddaughter, who he describes as “the sunshine of their lives”.

Long-term Boksburg residents, they lived in the same house there for 27 years in fact, Christo and Marie, “packed up and relocated” to the Cape in 2014. That turned out to be a great choice for the couple, with Christo describing it as the “most beautiful country in the whole world, the Republic of the Cape of Storms and Good Hope”.

This might sound like the sort of move that would persuade one to give up work entirely, but Christo says he is still building his legacy.

“We are working primarily through organised labour and since relocating to the Cape we’ve made contact with about 15 trade unions, five bargaining councils and a couple of employer oganisations.”

During his working life, Christo has built up savings in a retirement annuity as well as preservation fund when he changed jobs.

“Unfortunately, I don’t have nearly enough saved and, therefore, I will have to work until the day before I die. As I read the other day: Based on my calculations I can retire about 5 years after I die,” he says."

“At least I’m enjoying every minute of what I’m doing, though. As my clever and practical son always says, ‘If you enjoy what you are doing, you will not have to work a single day of your life’.”

When Christo was approaching normal retirement age (whatever that means in this day and age) he thought it would be a good time to consolidate his different pots of retirement savings. After doing some research and feeling totally out of his depth, Christo says, he settled on what seemed to be a “reputable company” because he liked what he saw about their performance.

He transferred one of his investments to a Living Annuity with the company, but then he describes a eureka moment: “Lo and Behold,” he says, “I stumbled upon 10X! … If I remember correctly it was on Twitter, nogal!”

His language and tone changes when he talks about the “amazing experience” he had with 10X and how he wants to move all his investments across now.

“When I accessed the 10X website I felt at home immediately. The language was clear, concise and perfectly understandable. The choices are manageable. Most important, the investment costs struck the perfect chords!” he says.

He completed and submitted the online application forms at 12:25pm on 3 April 2018 and received confirmation and a welcome letter before 1pm. He adds that he was even more pleased when a letter from “the Big Boss himself [10X CEO Steven Nathan]” followed.

Christo was pleased to receive regular updates on the progress of the transfer process and then “a very welcome thank you gift from 10X”.

“Talk of making clients feel special,” he says, adding that other players in the industry could learn some “serious lessons from 10X”.

“10X is simply the best in all respects. I can wholeheartedly recommend this dynamic investment company.”

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