Erenst matriculated from High School Overkruin in Pretoria in 1979, after which he graduated from the University of Pretoria with a B.Com (Economics) degree. Due to bursary obligations, he started working for the Board for the Decentralization of Industry as Industrial Advisor. At the age of 26, and after completing several management courses and training programs, he was promoted to Director: Industry Settlement - at that time the youngest director in the history of the public service. In 1989 the IDC (Industrial Development Corporation) approached him for a managerial position. As Manager: Existing Interests, during the period from 1989 to 1998, he was exposed to specialized academic training via the IDC and UNISA, including Credit Management, Risk Management, Marketing Management, Financial Management and Strategic Planning. He represented the IDC on various listed and unlisted companies' boards, where he also served as chairman on three of these companies’ boards. He also represented the IDC on the Board for the Decentralization of Industry. In 1998 he was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of SSK. Erenst is married to Annemarie and they have a son Werner and two daughters, Annri and Susan. He loves hunting, nature and collecting exceptional wines.