Controller, Requires Relocation to Uganda

Recruiting Company Galloway, NJ 2019-01-09

This job requires you to relocate permanently to Uganda. You will be working for a large agricultural conglomerate that is based in East Africa.

The Ugandan farms produce maize, sunflowers and soybeans. Raw product is mostly shipped to processors, but the company does a small amount of processing itself.

The job pays $150,000 to $200,000. The first $110,000 is tax-free to a US citizen.

There is a bonus opportunity.

In addition to base salary, you will receive housing, a vehicle, insurance, medical, and a travel allowance.

While all qualified candidates will be considered, the ideal candidate for this job is an early to mid-career CPA or Senior Accountant with some agricultural or commodity experience who is ready to make a (non-contractual) commitment to living and working in Kampala Uganda for 5 to 10 years.

This job will quickly lead to being the on-site CFO.

As the Controller you will oversee a team of local bookkeepers/accountants.

A big part of your job will be to travel to the outlying farms 3 or 4 days per week to observe procedures and interact with managers to create and ensure that systems are in place that address production, efficiencies, theft reduction, and general bookkeeping.

Because you will be traveling to the farms weekly, you are required to relocate permanently to Kampala. You will not be given an opportunity to, for example, work three weeks and return home for a week. Permanent relocation to Kampala is required.

From the job description:

Responsibilities

  • Lead the Finance Team, including Finance Managers and Associates
  • Develop financial systems, tools and policies across the finance organization to ensure scalability of organization
  • Develop and implement risk management strategies including insurance planning and management
  • Control budgets and prepare reports on expenditure versus budget
  • Manage operational finance including accounts payable/receivables, cash management and credit facilities
  • Develop and implement technology to improve financial management
  • Manage all aspects of tax accounting and reporting
  • Oversee financial accounting and bookkeeping to ensure accuracy of accounts
  • Develop financial reports including monthly, quarterly and annual consolidated management accounts and all other financial reports required by stakeholders
  • Support executive team in financial planning and budgeting
  • Manage external and internal audits
  • Invest in local capacity to sustainably deliver company’s financial goals
  • Work with managing partners to develop and execute fundraising strategies.
  • Manage insurance function including policy procurement and renewal, claims and collections
  • Support strategic planning

You will report directly to the Managing Partners. In time you will become the CFO.

Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Finance, or similar.
  • A CPA designation is very much preferred.
  • Mastery of principles of financial accounting and financial accounting experience with a demonstrated track-record of team building and leadership
  • 7+ years of experience in corporate finance, accounting, consulting, banking and/or treasury functions
  • Management experience in a best-in-class finance organization
  • Agribusiness, manufacturing, consumer packaged goods or other relevant industry experience is preferred
  • A passion for developing financial systems and policies from scratch
  • Broad range of computer skills including database and statistics applications

Living and working in Uganda.

  • While there is an expat community in Uganda, especially in Kampala where you will be living, it is a relatively small, very youthful and ever-changing group of people. Opportunities for relationships with others from your home country will be few.
  • Uganda is a country with many "challenges" including widespread poverty, petty theft, daily power outages, extreme overcrowding and traffic problems in Kampala, and a reliance on cash versus credit card transactions.
  • If you are married, consider this: You will be traveling from the city to the country to visit farms 4 days per week. This means you will be leaving your spouse (and children if you have them) alone in Kampala for the entire day. While you will presumably be living in a gated community with a security guard, this can still be a worrisome situation, or, at best, a lonely existence for the spouse.
  • It is not known if your travels to the farm include a driver, or if you would be driving alone. Safety in the city versus safety traveling alone in the country would have to be evaluated.

Trying to find some good news:

  • Money. Since everything is provided for you except food, and the first $110,000 of income is not taxed, if you live frugally, after 5 years you would be able to return to the US with quite a lot of cash.
  • Adventure. Uganda, and the surrounding countries, offer safaris, wildlife viewing, fishing, and other tourism opportunities at very low cost.
  • Growth. This job leads to the CFO job, and there are other opportunities within the company for the individual who wants to stay in East Africa.

How to get this job:

Okay, if you have read this far, especially the part about the "challenges" of Ugandan living, you must be somewhat serious about wanting the job. Follow these guidelines if you want an opportunity to be reviewed.

  • If you are married, have a long discussion about relocating to Uganda. Google "Living in Uganda", "Living in Kampala", "Expat Living Kampala" or something similar to read blogs and general information about living in Kampala. Be absolutely sure that you and your spouse can endure the living conditions.
  • While a US company is bound by anti-discrimination laws, a company based in East Africa is not. The company is not going to consider candidates who appear to be at the end of their career. This would seem to be short-sighted, as who better to consider this job than someone whose children are grown and is looking to stay in the job 5 or 8 years and build equity in a retirement fund, but the company is not going to consider this. They are looking for an early to mid-career person for this job. Be advised: No matter what your career stage or apparent age, your resume will be shownto the company. If you do not fall into the "early to mid-career" category, a compelling cover letter should be included addressing the issue.
  • The company is very eager to hire someone who has agricultural or commodity experience. If you have this, or anything close to this, be sure it is clearly stated on your resume.
  • Be sure that for each company you list on your resume as having been an employee, you state what the company did, produced, manufactured, or what service it provided.
  • Do NOT send a "canned" cover letter.
  • DO send a brief cover letter that 1) explains why you want the job, 2) outlines your agricultural or commodity experience (if any), 3) clearly states your salary requirement or requirement range.

That's about it.

The company has indicated that they are ready to hire a Controller right now.

Let's go!

Job Type: Full-time

Experience:

  • accounting, corporate finance, treasury or banking: 7 years (Required)

Education:

  • Bachelor's (Required)
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