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Hlumelo Biko (born January 1978, in King William's Town, Eastern Cape, South Africa) is a South African businessman and investment banker. He is the son of Steve Biko and Mamphela Ramphele.

Hlumelo Biko
BornJanuary 1978 (age 40–41)
OccupationBusinessman, investment banker
Parent(s)Steve Biko
Mamphela Ramphele


Early lifeEdit

His mother Ramphele was five months pregnant with him when she learned that Steve Biko, with whom she was having an affair, had been killed in police custody. She named him Hlumelo because it means "the shoot of a tree" in the Xhosa language.[1]

Biko holds a B.A. in History and Politics from the University of Cape Town, and a Masters of Science in International Business Government Relationships from Georgetown University.[2]


Biko worked for the World Bank in Washington, D.C. in 1998[citation needed].

Biko and Ramphele co-founded Circle Capital, an investment company, in 2005.[3] Biko was the CEO of Circle Capital.[4] In 2008, Bespoke Magazine called him "the driving force behind a multi-million Rand black empowerment company... one of South Africa's most intriguing empowerment vehicles."[2] As a businessman, Hlumelo has a reputation of not paying his employees or suppliers in a timely manner. His company, Circle Food Group (led by his colleague and friend Clive Rugara) is currently facing a number of lawsuits from a wide variety of suppliers and former employees for unethical business behavior.[5] Former employees and service providers of Hlumelo Biko's companies have accused him of failing to honour salary and services payments for months since 2016. Financial challenges by Circle Food Group were the result of “poor leadership”, and Hlumelo and Clive Rugara failed to manage their businesses correctly and lacked basic ethics.[6]


In parallel with a successful 13-year career as a venture capitalist, he is also a dedicated philanthropist, currently serving as vice-chairman of the Baxter Theatre, supporting budding small and medium enterprises as a board member of Endeavor offering mentorship and advice to a number of high impact South African entrepreneurs, and supporting increased access to education through institutions like Kommunity Group Projects, the University of Cape Town and African Schools for Excellence. In early January 2018, he was arrested on charges of assault related to domestic violence of his wife.[7]


  1. ^ Daley, Suzanne (April 13, 1997). "The Standards Bearer". The New York Times. New York.
  2. ^ a b Willis, Mike. "Bespoke People: Man of Change", Bespoke, Beirut, July 2008.
  3. ^ Bridge, Sherilee. Trailblazers: South Africa's champions of change. Cape Town: Double Storey, 2007.
  4. ^ "Circle Capital Executive Team". Retrieved 2010-05-24.
  5. ^ "Biko's son 'dodges' huge hotel bill | IOL News". Retrieved 2018-02-04.
  6. ^ "'Empty promises': Employees accuse Hlumelo Biko of owing them money". CityPress. Retrieved 2018-05-17.
  7. ^ Mortlock, Monique. "Hlumelo Biko due in court over wife's assault". Retrieved 2018-01-29.