An individual who has made a significant contribution to their community through their dedication and personal effort.
I am South African. I am also British. I am an expat. I am a lawyer. I am an activist. I am a mommy. I try to be a good friend. I swim, bike and run for charity. I am chatty but I am actually shy. I feel deeply. I love to travel. I live for those early morning cuddles from my son. The sun makes me happy. I love bookshops. I get very animated when the Springboks are playing. I need coffee in the morning. I am a dreamer. I am scared of snakes. I love sunrises. I love to dance when nobody is watching. I like wine. I care. I am not perfect. I am passionate about South Africa and its people. I am work in progress. I am just me.
Jeanette founded ZABRA – AfreeBra initiative in Sept 2015 when she discovered bras donated to charities in the UK are sent to fabric recycling. Alongside running ZABRA, she holds down a demanding career as a Business Development Manager. She has been living in the UK since 2002 when she came on a career assignment from IBM South Africa to IBM EMEA. In 2004 she became an IBM UK employee. In her spare time, she is also a school governor with the Twyford CofE Academies Trust. She lives in Old Isleworth, close to Twickenham, with her husband, Jeremy Nicholas, a professional speaker and broadcaster, and their dog Jimmy Chew.
Cherry is a South African nursing sister who has used her clinical training as a foundation for hope and healing in her country. She is a Director of a clinical research company and conducts clinical trials in Durban, South Africa. She also spends many hours running her non-profit organisation, Celebrate Life SA, which works to alleviate human and environmental suffering. Through Celebrate Life SA, the biggest focus point for her presently is female empowerment through the Ubuntu Breadmaking Oven Project. This project trains previously disadvantaged women in rural communities to run their own bakeries as entrepreneurs, while contributing to local feeding schemes.
Ramadimetje Lucy Mashigo
Ramadimetje is the founder of South Africa Diaspora Ubuntu Trust, which stands for unity of purpose regardless of political, religious, ethnic or religious affiliations. Diaspora has brought about community cohesion and integration through various South African national events and community events, particularly civic education. It is a partnership of many South African organisations supported by various stakeholders. These organisations supplement andcompliment each other, for not one single organisation can meet the needs of all the South African communities. The Diaspora has been able to link up with various offices including the Mission to open platforms for community support in terms of emigration, repatriation in death, civic education, etc. The Diaspora evolved to be Diaspora Ubunye to translate into reality the option for the marginalised in South Africa by running community projects to improve the lives of the poor.
An individual who displays great potential in new or existing business or industry; who has shown to recently stand out from their peers as a result of their personal effort. This is an individual of any age or a business or effort of any nature.
Scott Smyth, 32, is Chief Commercial Officer of Pivotal iQ and has worked closely with some of the world’s leading IT vendors, helping many of them to succeed in the fast-emerging digital landscape of Africa. Pivotal iQ continues to invest in their South African customer intelligence. He is equally dedicated to aid work in Africa. In 2017, he travelled to Sierra Leone, delivering essential items to orphanage Freetown orphanage. He later crossed into Liberia, delivering much-needed items to families living in a house built for the community by the Smyth family. He aims to return to Africa this year.
Roelof is a pianist currently studying at the Royal College of Music in London. The RCM recently awarded him the annual prize for "outstanding contribution to the musical life at the RCM". He is a versatile musician, engaging in solo piano, chamber music, Historically Informed Performance, and concerto performances. He will also be joining the South African MIAGI Orchestra for its European concert tour as part of Mandela's centenary celebrations. He is passionate about promoting South African art music and was instrumental in the revival of his father's Piano Concerto when he performed it with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra in December 2017.
Kenda is an Automation Ninja. With a background in Forensic Psychology and an affinity for statistics and behaviourally intelligent automation – she’s not your average expert. She’s been living and breathing Infusionsoft for over 5 years and has spent over 14 500 hours learning new ways to automate what people think is impossible. She’s a true nerd, and spends her waking hours helping businesses understand behaviour for super effective marketing, and relishes in simplifying over complicated processes for truly intelligent automated marketing. She’s the founder of Automation Ninjas - Experts in behavioural automation. Expect enthusiasm and a wealth of knowledge – not normalcy.
Deborah was born in Cape Town, but moved to the UK with her family in the mid 80s. With a background in journalism and PR, she helped to launch Mellon Educate UK in April 2015. Working with the charity’s chapters in Dublin and Cape Town, their mission is to provide educational improvements for 100,000 disadvantaged African children within 10 years. In 3 years 200+ UK Building Blitz volunteers have physically improved 8 schools impacting 7,998 learners in some of South Africa’s poorest areas. Their participation also funds a 2-5yr training programme in each school to equip and empower teaching staff with improved knowledge, methodologies and technologies. Deborah's main focus is to drive awareness and grow support from UK-based businesses, the SA expat community and those who care about South Africa’s future and its children and who strongly believe that education is key to prosperity.
Talita is an entrepreneur, experienced CFO working with globally established brands like BMW, Investec and KPMG, published author of ‘The Authenticity Dilemma Resolved®’ and speaker. Talita values ethics and socially-responsible business and believes in: creating supportive organisational cultures; respecting difference; and focussing on authenticity as an enabler for true diversity of thought and inclusion. Talita is passionate about personal growth and creating business environments that support wholeness and nurture individuals to be authentic, inspirational and responsible leaders. Talita stepped out of corporate life to help leaders and businesses transform with the aspiration to create a collective of responsible leaders, responsible organisations and societal endeavours who promote and live the 17 UN Sustainable Development goals.
An individual owns, runs or has a significant influence on a micro business or activity in the UK that is South African led or serving the South African community in the UK or SA.
South Africa is not just where Dawn was born, it is who she is. Her desire to remain connected to her roots, culture and heritage gave birth to a brand to celebrates only the positives of her birthplace - her spiritual home. Celebrate Southern Africa keeps her Africa DNA activated with an annual market in Somerset, UK (attended by 50 Southern African businesses and 3,000 visitors from around the country), an online magazine (sharing stories, culture, fiction and African tales from some of the most talented writers who share her passion), and an online radio show (celebrating the people, music, stories and giving our community an opportunity to share about their businesses and the charitable work they do).
Natalie is the founder of SippersandSpitters. Before embarking on a career in wine, she studied Governance and Politics at UCT, SA. She worked at the South African Wine Industry Information and Systems (SAWIS) as the Information Manager. Visiting vineyards and winemakers all across the Western Cape is where Natalie’s interest in wine grew to the point where she decided to earn a living doing what I love. Natalie is WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) qualified and has extensive knowledge of countless wines and styles. She thoroughly enjoy sharing her knowledge and discoveries with great enthusiasm and hosting wine tasting parties.
Beverley is firstly a fiercely passionate South African mom of three little humans who are her main reason for working tirelessly to make a success of their businesses. Each child needs their own business to take over! Bev started The Travelling Cupcake after having been made redundant while she was pregnant. She “baked” her way out of a very dark depression and literally grabbed every opportunity sent her way. She opened a retail store during a recession with no previous retail experience. To South Africans they are known as that cake shop that does South African food, to the Brits they are known as that South African shop that does good cake! They have recently purchased another business called Lucy's Kitchen so that they can expand and are developing their local Travelling Cupcake brand into a home baked style deli with goods from locally produced and sourced suppliers.
Nyasha was born in Zimbabwe. She strongly relates to her African values of deep family connections. She sees the community as the extension of her family. Nyasha has been a social entrepreneur for over 30 years. She has extensive experience in start-up organisations that have a rapid, as well as sustainable growth and has a strong track record of identifying new market opportunities and turning them into highly successful social enterprises. Nyasha is the Founder and CEO of various Social Enterprises, including Banya Family Placement Agency and Vana Trust Charity. She has won several awards over the years - Social Entrepreneur of the Year, Business Woman of the Year and several Community Awards. Nyasha’s vision for the future is to make global connections and to mentor social entrepreneurs through a social impact investment fund, which will help people, especially women, to reach economic independence through enterprise.
An individual that has achieved outstanding success in their own business venture or one wherein they have a significant influence and interest (equity or similar).
Born and raised in Durban, Pamela came to the UK in 2010 to work as a Chemical Engineer. Since then, she’s become a best-selling author and Director of two start-up companies, Showbizbee (TV/Film) and MyShopLondon (UK-based shopping platform for South Africans). Her book ‘Just Friends – The Ultimate Girl’s Guide to Male Friendships’ was critically acclaimed for empowering the modern woman. Showbizbee was recently awarded the Brenda Fassie Production rights; Pamela implemented the ‘True Life Project’ - designed to support/train under-privileged South Africans within the Film/TV industry. MyShopLondon is the first and only platform providing South Africans access to the biggest international fashions brands.
Philip has always been passionate about boats and upon moving to London in 2014, pursued his dream to own a boating company: Thames Limo was born. Since then he has requalified as a Captain, passed the Local Knowledge Endorsement with Port Of London Authority, received Freedom to The City of London and is the first South African to be accepted to the working Guild of The Company of Watermen and Lightermen, dating back to 1514. Thames Limo is a Venetian boat, attracting celebrities and VIP guests to explore the river and has been featured in many films and TV channels.
Jody is an experienced manager and entrepreneur in both big business and start-up companies, having worked for Maersk Line, Kuehne & Nagel and in 3 start-up companies. He has 16 years’ experience in the container shipping market. In 2014 Jody founded MTI, which has subsequently demonstrated its abilities in the creation of the first real implementation of distributed ledger technology in the shipping industry. This was achieved through a combination of deep industry knowledge and best in class technical know-how. Industry insight was gained through past work experience and starting with a freight forwarding business to gain access to industry stakeholders. Best in class technical know-how was achieved by teaming with Agility Sciences Ltd (ASL), a blockchain solutions company, and Black Swan Data (BSD).
An individual who consistently proves to be at the cutting edge of his/her field and employs new technologies to spur growth.
Felicia Meyerowitz Singh
Felicia is CEO/Co-founder of Akoni, the digital cash treasury manager for SMEs/Charities. Akoni increases returns and saves time dealing with multiple banks through data innovation, to personalise products. Akoni has been recognised for tech innovation and featured in the Banker, Euromoney, the Independent, etc. Felicia studied at WITS/UNISA and did articles at Pwc, and transferred to Alexander Forbes London, also an studying an LBS Executive MBA. Felicia and a team set up a newLloyd’s broker/Underwriting agency (sold to Willis), and then two new startups including Akoni. Felicia actively supports SA through the TEDx Board - Sharing Inspiring stories about Africa, and as a pediatric HIV Charity Trustee, as well as promotes female entrepreneurship through the Female Founders club.
Born in Port Elizabeth and educated at Wits, David left South Africa for the UK in 1961. After starting in advertising, he shifted to brand development in 1969 and has worked in the field ever since - probably the longest continuous period in innovation by anyone. With major client IDV/Diageo, his focus was creating drinks brands: Baileys Irish Cream, Smirnoff Black, J&B Jet, Tanqueray Ten, Ciroc, The Singleton, Kenya Cane and many others. He operated in all important international markets. His unique career is mapped out in his book, which can be previewed on www.thatshitwillneversell.com.
Craig is the founder and Managing Director of Videre Global headquartered in the North East of England. Videre is an Innovative off grid Renewable Energy mini grid developer and operator in Zambia and Kenya and Solar Street Lighting supply and projects in South Africa and Mauritius. Videre has in the past provided solar solutions in an informal settlement for an orphanage in South Africa which started the company down the off grid renewable energy path.
An individual or a business which is being recognised for their outstanding achievement in delivering increased trade in products and services between South Africa and the United Kingdom.
Jaco van Zyl
A young dynamic professional who is constantly on the lookout for opportunity. Jaco works hard and tread cautiously with the aim to execute diligently. He has advised many UHNW clients over the years and has gained valuable experience through them and their businesses. Through Transact SA-UK and Maitland experience and contacts, Jaco hopes to succeed in making real change in trade between SA and the UK. The overarching aim he would like to achieve is to promote trade of a sustainable nature that benefits the environment and uplifts people in poverty.
Awarded to an individual who has made a real difference to a group of people in South Africa through charitable work over an extended period.
Lisa Ashton MBE
Lisa is the founder & CEO of The Winnie Mabaso Foundation. An NPO supporting vulnerable and orphaned children and the wider community in South Africa. The Foundation has an orphanage for abused, abandoned and orphaned children in Johannesburg and runs several empowerment and development projects on a neighbouring informal settlement including a pre-school for 30 underprivileged children, a library, a gardening scheme, a granny club, a mobile feeding station and a recently opened sewing school. Lisa spends her time between the UK and SA.
Lord Peter Hain
Leading anti-apartheid campaigner, Peter Hain was born to Pretoria activists jailed, banned and finally exiled to Britain in 1966, where he led successful campaigns to stop all-white sports tours. BOSS sent him a letter bomb in June 1972; supported a 1972 prosecution for conspiracy; and framed him for a bank theft in 1975. Subsequently a UK MP and government minister he is now a Peer. Visiting Professor at Wits Business School and Chair of the Donald Woods Foundation, in 2017 he Chaired the OR Tambo London Centenary Committee and is currently Chair of the Nelson Mandela London Centenary Committee. In September 2017-January 2018 he exposed State Capture, money laundering and corruption in the Lords. His biography Mandela: his essential life is published in July.
Niall has been very fortunate in life, he has a wonderful family and has been successful in business. He decided early on that his success should be measured by helping others and not by financial gain. Niall never dreamed that founding the Niall Mellon Township Trust in 2003 would result in the creation of over 25,000 houses for 125,000 homeless people in South Africa. Or that in just 4 years Mellon Educate would impact over 32,000 learners in the 28 schools they help. His proudest achievement however is inspiring over 22,000 volunteers to join him and help to improve the lives and futures of so many people.
Although an engineer by profession, Paul O’Sullivan is recognised as one of the country’s leading crime-fighters. With more than 43 years’ experience in law-enforcement, which includes diverse areas such as, Counter Espionage, counter-terrorism, counter trafficking (drugs, weapons and human), as well local law-enforcement, including syndicated crime. He normally puts together a strategy that sees justice being served. In 1997, the Johannesburg Chamber’s medical aid was defrauded out of R3,250,000. Paul got the money back, with interest! He was the subject of multiple unlawful searches, arrests and torture during the period 2015 to 2018, to try and stop him exposing systemic corruption – he still exposed it.
A business woman who is achieving in business, either her own company or as an employee, who is an inspirational leader, recognised in her field and is or could be a role model to other women.
Debbie is a problem solver - an ”ideas person” with a passion for helping others. She always thinks outside the box and is happiest trying to change things for the better. In her professional life she was a partner at Deloitte in the audit & advisory space and left the firm in 2016 to pursue something totally foreign to her – fintech and financial services. At Bibimoney she is targeting over 50 million users in the next 5 years across emerging markets, in Africa, Asia and Latin America, where many people remain unbanked and do not have access to basic financial services.
Bernie de Le Cuona
Bernie founded her interior textile company in 1992. Today de Le Cuona is a luxury brand, world famous for creating exquisite interior fabrics with unique tactility.
Bernie is an industry expert and an acclaimed businesswoman. Interior designers and fashion houses turn to her when a linen specialist is called for. She has advised historical conservation bodies and her paisley is archived in the Victoria & Albert Museum. de Le Cuona has grown from modest beginnings to an international enterprise with thriving showrooms in London and New York and a global distribution network. The company is headquartered in Royal Windsor.
Alysia is the founder and host of the Global FiresideChat online radio show reaching 30k+ entrepreneurs & global leaders in 65 countries. Alysia is a seed-stage technology-investor working with multi-$bn potential startups addressing global challenges through beneficial data use & automation, financial technology and health technology. Her firm, Street Global Venture Capital combines investing with public policy influence and bridges Silicon Valley, Europe and Emerging Markets. Alysia is a multi-industry, self-made entrepreneur, NED, data scientist, author, advocate and influencer. Alysia is a UN Global Champion for Women’s Empowerment and Entrepreneurship, UK #MicroBizMattersDay Ambassador, IGD Emerging Leaders Fellow, TechUK STEM Ambassador, Diversity Leader of the Year 2017 and voted an Inspiring Woman in Tech.
Any business individual who has excelled in their field and displays outstanding leadership and have contributed to the growth, sustainability and profitability of their business or their area of influence of their employer. Shown good business and management skills industry knowledge and consistent capability.
Mike is CEO and founder of Better2Know in the UK and SA. Mike is the driving force behind Better2Know’s growth which has seen it be one of the top 100 fastest growing Tech Companies in the North of England for the last two years. Mike has worked healthcare for over 25 years working in the UK, South Africa, Europe and the Middle East to drive company growth. Mike focuses on providing patients with what they want and delivering them an excellent service.
Ian is Managing Director of CentrePoint Software, a leading Sage business partner for Accounting Systems, based in Central London, and also specializes in Customer Relationship solutions, Maximizer, Act! and Sage CRM. Recently, CentrePoint merged with Microsoft Gold Partner GCC, allowing them to offer their clients cloud-based Microsoft solutions. Ian and CentrePoint are 100% customer focused and deliver proven software solutions that achieve client’s objectives. CentrePoint also provides software support for their customers, now looking after more than 400 London based companies. Last year, Ian won the SA Chamber of Commerce's Business Leader of the Year award, recognizing 25-years of successfully growing his business, CentrePoint Software.
A Chartered Accountant holding English (ACA) and South African (CA/SA) qualifications and a Shareholder/Director of Exceed CA Limited.
Gerhard assists South African and international businesses in the UK with financial management, accounting requirements, strategic planning, growing and retaining business and wealth planning. He gains tremendous satisfaction seeing successful clients ultimately exit their businesses and retire comfortably. Gerhard loves working alongside people passionate about their businesses, developing clear goals and maintaining humour during bad times. Exceed Directors have an entrepreneurial outlook - they built their own business in the UK and are therefore experienced to help fellow South Africans.
An individual in his / her personal capacity, or as a leader or key influencer within an organization, who has utilised time, money or skills to contribute to lifting the spirit of the nation, ensuring a better future for all.
Lesley Ann van Selm
At 24 Lesley Ann started her own marketing company, focusing on the upliftment of marginalised communities. The genesis of Khulisa dates back to 1997 when Lesley Ann, in collaboration with various government departments launched a storytelling programme amongst juvenile offenders utilising African stories to promote a sense of cultural pride. Khulisa has expanded nationally as their programmes evolved into a cross spectrum of interventions and renders programmes targeting all sectors of vulnerable communities. Collectively Khulisa and Lesley Ann have been awarded numerous local and international awards for their work in the arena of crime prevention, social entrepreneurship and community development. Lesley Ann believes there is no such thing as failure, only incomplete successes.