Simon Susman was born in Tel Aviv, Israel in 1950 and spent his childhood in South Africa. He matriculated from St Andrew’s College in Grahamstown and in 1969 went on to the University of Cape Town where, due to “much anti -apartheid politics”, he did not obtain his degree.
Simon moved to London in 1971 and worked in various positions for Marks & Spencer, eventually becoming personal assistant to Lord Sieff, the Chairman.
In 1982, Simon returned to Woolworths in South Africa where he architected and built the Woolies’ Food business. He further held a number of top executive positions in the group before becoming Chief Executive in 2000. In 2003 Simon took over the chairmanship of Woolies’ Australian subsidiary, Country Road.
Woolworths is a $6bn group operating in Southern Africa and in Australia where it owns both the Country Road Group and now David Jones, the 176 year old department store group. The businesses are bywords for quality and sustainability.
Within Woolworths, Simon instigated and drove a comprehensive programme entitled the
“Good business journey”. Through this programme, the Group continually strives to do business in a way that is deeply sustainable both socially and environmentally.
During Simon’s 10 year period as CEO, the share price rose from R2.60 to over R26.00, strongly reinforcing his view that a business, deeply rooted in values and passionately delivering on sustainability, can bring real value to all stakeholders.
Simon is currently Chairman of; the Woolworths Group; the London based Virgin Active fitness business; and the Dubai based Al Tayer Retail Board.
Bruce WhitfieldFinancial Journalist / Radio & TV Presenter
The Money Show (Radio 702)
Bruce is a multi-platform award-winning financial journalist. His work on radio, television and in print gives him unique access to South Africa’s biggest power brokers in business and money.
Bruce has been named Financial Journalist of the Year three times in the past decade by independent judges in the annual Sanlam Awards and has received recognition for his work on the economy, companies and personal finance.
Bruce has developed the ability to tell compelling stories about the political economy in a way that is creative and engaging.
He has worked in the highly competitive London radio market and has worked as a foreign correspondent for various global news organizations. He graduated top of his class with a Bachelor of Journalism degree from Rhodes University and has been practicing as a journalist for over two decades. One day he hopes to turn it into a career.
Bruce presents The Money Show on 702 and CapeTalk, hosts Taking Stock, a weekly TV show on eNCA, and is a columnist and writer for Business Insider.
He is also a sought-after public speaker, MC and conference facilitator.
Advocate Thuli Madonsela is an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa and a lifelong activist on social justice, constitutionalism, human rights, good governance and the rule of law. Named one of TIME100 influential people, in 2014 and Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2016, Thuli Madonsela is one of the drafters of South Africa’s Constitution and co-architect of several laws that have sought to illuminate South Africa’s democracy.
Thuli Madonsela was South Africa’s Public Protector for 7 years and Coarchitect and Founding Chairperson of the African Ombudsman Research Centre. She has a global reputation for integrity and fearlessness in enforcing accountability and justice in the exercise of public power and use of public resources.
She has a history of highlighting the importance of social justice and general inclusive enjoyment of the fruits of democracy in the pursuit of peace.
Currently resident at Harvard University as an Advanced Leadership Fellow, Thuli Madonsela has accepted the Chair of Social Justice at Stellenbosch University with effect from January 2018. She is a Paul Harris Fellow, Tallberg Global Leader, and the recipient of Transparency International’s Integrity Award, the German Africa Prize and the Commonwealth Lawyers Truth and Justice Award, among her innumerable accolades.
At the age of 43, Kieno is a media veteran, having been part of the commercial media landscape for the past 25 years. Kieno is the host of the Kieno Kammies Show on Cape Talk and has worked on a number of other commercial radio stations across South Africa, this includes hosting the top independent commercial music breakfast show on Jacaranda FM. His international media work includes commentary for the BBC as well as having been contracted as a consultant correspondent for NBC TV News New York and London, with his highlight being the privilege of having worked with US news legend Tom Brokaw.
Kieno is also a businessman, heading up KKStrategic, which assists disruptive technology businesses develop value propositions while assisting them with market entry in strategies and executions. The businesses Kieno currently works with include a disruptive alarm app invested in by Alan Gray’s E Squared, a med tech business driven by artificial intelligence, as well as a blockchain technology business aiming to disrupt a number of industries, with his partner being a Brazilian start up already doing millions of dollars worth of digital asset trading.
Theo Ndindwa has been involved in the creative industry and community development in various roles over the past 15yrs. from and trained in Gugulethu, Cape Town and London, UK. Theo has experienced the professional industry of the arts internationally and is committed to the successful development of South Africa.
As one of the first black male classical trained dancers and founder of a dance institution in the country,over the past decade the iKapa has been a pioneer in the transformation, social inclusivity and economic development in Dance/Arts in SA.
He has been instrumental in the growth and success of the
organization locally and internationally through the establishment of new & nurturing of existing professional, business and creative partnerships.
Mteto Nyati was born in the Eastern Cape town of Mthatha where he completed his first years of schooling. Upon completion of his studies, he was offered a scholarship to do a BSc in Mechanical Engineering, which he completed in 1995.
He started off his career in the gases and welding products industry where he served in various roles. He later joined an FMGC where he was instrumental in consolidating the company’s plants in one central operation. He left the industry and joined a JSE-listed packaging manufacturer and later left to pursue a career in ICT at IBM South Africa. He served IBM South Africa in various capacities before he joined Microsoft South Africa in 2008 as Managing Director, a position he served for six years.
In October 2014 he joined MTN as Group Chief Enterprise Officer and in July the following year he was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of MTN South Africa. In April 2017 he joined Altron as Chief Executive.
He has won a number of accolades in his illustrious career, including being named as one of Yale University’s World Fellows on Global Leadership. He was also named Male Business Personality of the Year which was conferred by the Oliver Transformation and Empowerment Awards.
He was also recognised as the 2014 IT Personality of the Year by the Institute of Information Technology Professionals South Africa.
The South African daily anchor of the ‘The SAFM Market Update with Moneyweb and the nightly business show ‘Moneyline on eNCA’ from Monday to Thursday. Siki also hosted eNCA’s “The Big Debate”.
This acclaimed TV and radio personality has also been the ‘Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year – TV’ twice, and was included in the ‘Mail & Guardian Book of South African Women.
She also won the acclaimed ‘Telkom ICT Journalist (TV) of the Year’ Award’. She’s been listed on YouTube as ‘one of the Top 10 African journalists to watch, and her alma mater Rhodes University presented her with the Emerging Old Rhodian award for 2015 in recognition of her role as one of the leading public voices on finance in South African media.
Kganki Matabane is the Chief Executive Officer of the Black Business Council.
Kganki spearheaded SENTECH SOC Ltd’s expansion into the rest of the African continent since July 2017. Before that he spent 5 years as the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director of SENTECH.
During his tenure as COO, SENTECH achieved 5 consecutive clean audits (a first in the history of the company). He is a highly-experienced public and private sector professional with more than 20 years working experience (more than 10 of those years at Executive level) and have served as an Executive Director of Operations and Transformation Policy at Business Unity South Africa (BUSA). He held various strategic positions at the Black Management Forum (BMF), Gauteng Provincial Legislature, City Power Johannesburg, Spoornet and Anglo American
Other notable current positions:
• Non-Executive Director: Sandown Motor Holdings, a Mercedes Benz SA Company;
• Member at Limpopo Province Premier’s Employment Growth and Development Advisory Council;
• Board member and Chairperson of REMCO; and
• Practising member – South African Institute of Professional Accountants
• The Institute of Directors of SA
• The Black Management Forum
Sheraan Amod is a South African entrepreneur with significant experience in technology startups and venture capital. He founded the personalised publishing company Personera in 2009; raising funding from marquee investors and commercializing the company in the USA before exiting it to the US firm Impression Works in 2013.
Returning from New York, Sheraan went on to found the Internet venture incubator Springlab, focusing on South African technology investments. This soon led to the creation of RecoMed (where Sheraan is CEO), which has rapidly become the fastest growing online healthcare booking platform in Sub Saharan Africa. RecoMed seamlessly connects doctors and patients in real-time, with a strong consumer and B2B platform business that reaches stakeholders across the healthcare, life insurance and corporate wellness ecosystem.
He holds a degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Cape Town.
Managing Partner of HilburgMalan, Duke is a communications strategist who understands the barriers and opportunities facing Asian business going global and African entities doing business in Asia. He has served as a trusted advisor to global CEOs and senior Government officials.
Formerly Vice President: Corporate Affairs at FleishmanHillard in Hong Kong, Duke’s expertise spans resolving complex reputation management challenges, China-Africa market access and is a thought leader in Creating Shared Value initiatives. He has worked with leadership teams at Discovery, Burberry, the Ethiopian Investment Commission, Alibaba and Prudential.
Before joining FleishmanHillard Duke was Head of Reputation Management at, Johannesburg listed Discovery Limited – recognized by Fortune magazine as one of the leading Companies Changing the World. Duke’s impact in leading his team and enhancing Discovery’s corporate reputation saw him receive a Marketing Leadership Award.
Duke has held key communications roles at Barclays Africa, The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation as well a consultancy where clients included BMW and South Africa’s finance and mining ministries.
He is passionate about youth empowerment and served as a board member of Young Business South Africa and worked in Washington D.C at a leading youth development organization – Presidential Classroom.
Based in Hong Kong, Duke is a graduate of GIBS (Gordon Institute of Business Science) and the Tshwane University of Technology.
Rashid ToefyDeputy Director General: Economic Operations
Department of Economic Development and Tourism
Rashid Toefy is currently the Deputy Director General: Economic Operations in the Department of Economic Development and Tourism.
Before joining the department, Rashid was the Managing Director of MCI in Africa. The MCI Group is world’s largest conference and association management company, and brings people together through innovative meetings, events andb congresses and provides strategic association management consultancy in 60 cities around the world.
He served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), the leading convention centre in Africa from 2008 to 2014, positioning it as a global leader in sustainability.
He has worked extensively in the travel and tourism industry, both in South Africa and abroad. He spent three years based in Amsterdam, developing business and marketing strategies for travel companies and tourism businesses in over 30 countries, working extensively in Central Europe and Latin America.
Rashid is a member of the United Nations Global Compact Advisory Board in South Africa.
He has a degree in Economics and Environmental Science, as well an MBA from the University of Cape Town with his Masters Dissertation focusing on Collaborative Leadership, balancing discipline and diversity in effective decision making.
Rashid has become a thought leader on sustainability and implementation of triple bottom line principles within an organisation. He has spoken at several conferences, both in South Africa and abroad, about the importance and value of establishing social and environmental consciousness in businesses.
Rashid hates settling for mediocrity, and wants to do profound things that impact positively on all those around him.
He says: “we all need to make the following two ancient philosophies part of our lives….the first is the Japanese concept of Kaizen – “continuous improvement” and the second is the uniquely African concept of Ubuntu meaning “I am because we are”.
Sam Mensah Jr. is Founder and CEO of KISUA, a unique fashion brand that takes inspiration from traditional African techniques and materials, blending them with a contemporary design aesthetic and ethical production methods to create styles for the modern professional. The brand’s clients include award winning musician Beyoncé and the YOOX Net-a- Porter Group, the world’s leading online luxury fashion retailer. KISUA is the only African fashion brand with distribution centers on 3 continents- Africa, Europe and America, from where the company services a global client base through its international ecommerce platform. The company won ‘Best Emerging African Brand’ in the Best Brands Africa Awards 2015.
Prior to founding KISUA he worked in investment banking at Deutsche Bank London, in technology at Intel, setting up the Silicon Valley company’s Africa operations, and in venture capital as Africa Director for Intel Capital. Sam who is from Ghana but lives in Johannesburg holds an MA in Economics and Management from Oxford University and an Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu African Leadership Fellow.
Phumlani M. MajoziPolitical Analyst / Non-Executive Director
Free Market Foundation
Phumlani M. Majozi
Phumlani M. Majozi is a Political analyst and Non-executive director. His writings on political and economic issues have been published in the City Press, African Liberty, Politicsweb and BizNews. Currently, he’s a contributor on News24 Voices – where he writes about South Africa’s political and economic issues.
Phumlani is a member of the council at the South African Institute of Race Relations. He also sits on the boards of three organizations: Independent Entrepreneurship Group, Free Market Foundation South Africa (where he is also a youth coordinator), and Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA).
University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business
Sean Lewis is an ordinary South African citizen with a diverse professional background, having worked in and between Education, Information Technology and Public Relations. He currently works in Information Technology in the telecommunications industry.
He is also a Guest Lecturer on the Executive MBA program at the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business, and has been actively involved for most of his life in civil society and sporting organisations. He is one of the Founding Members of, and still active in the South Africa 1st Forum. He is 55 and married with children, living in Cape Town.
Neeshan Ishwarlal was born 9 January 1962, and resides in the Mondeor area of Johannesburg. He graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1984 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education, and in 1989 with a Post graduate Bachelor of Education degree. He also completed a MSC degree in public policy and management through correspondence with the University of London in 2008. Neeshan is currently the Executive Director at the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation for the past six years. In 2009, Neeshan acted as the Advisor to the MEC of Education and from 1999 to 2004 as the Deputy Director of the General Department of Local Government in Gauteng and of the General Office of Premier. Neeshan was well entrenched in his work with the ANC from 1990 to 1999, holding the following positions: Provincial Elections Coordinator, Local Government Councillor and the ANC organiser for the Lenasia Branch. Prior to this, Neeshan was a teacher at Topaz secondary school in Lenasia for three years.
Neeshan has served on the following organisations: Lenasia Civic Association, Progressive Teachers League, Homeless Support Committee, Lenasia Community Police Forum, South Western Chamber of Commerce and the Matthew Goniwe School of Leadership and Governance. He is currently on the board of the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency, East Wave Community Radio, and Sanca – Nishtara.
In the 1980s, Neeshan was an activist for the Transvaal Indian Congress, United Democratic Front, Lenasia Youth League, ANC Underground and MK and is now an executive member of the Civic Association of Johannesburg.
His interests include hiking, travelling and reading and he has received the following awards: American Field Service student exchange programme 1979/80 and Indicator (Newspaper) Human Rights Award – 1992.