Merchant Capital Founder and CEO Dov Girnun reminds us that we don’t know how good we’ve got it here in South Africa. That it’s time for entrepreneurs to rediscover the unshakeable optimism that’s made us great and not to let our country’s challenges get to us.
Discovery Insure CEO Anton Ossip recognises the value in supporting SMEs in a developing country. In order to solve the problem of unemployment and poverty, we need to create jobs - plenty of them. Stimulating the entrepreneur sector is probably the most powerful way we can create jobs right now. Ossip chats to Caley Africa about shared value and supporting entrepreneurship.
Sam Paddock is the former CEO and Co-Founder of the digital education company, GetSmarter. Sam and his brother Rob started the company in 2008 and grew it to operate in 167 countries by partnering with world-class universities to offer short online courses for professionals. Sam is also a co-founder of Getwine, Hubble Studios, and investor at Yuppiechef. Sam was on our stage last year alongside former President of South Africa, Thabo Mbeki speaking about the future of education.
There is a problem with education in South Africa (and Africa). That much is patently clear. The problem is that leaders don't know how to tackle the problem - or where even to start tacking the problem. The '4th Industrial Revolution' has rendered much of the landscape unintelligible for the people in charge of education portfolios at leadership level. When faced with the challenge, the trap is to call yet another round of talks - and all that results is more talks. After listening to two stirring talks by Sam Paddock and S'onqoba Maseko, Former South African President, Thabo Mbeki, gave a fascinating, cogent and sometimes hilarious speech on the Heavy Chef stage.
Last week, Seed Academy released The State Of Entrepreneurship In South Africa report, after surveying more than 1000 entrepreneurs across the county. The results indicate that entrepreneurs are not thriving and dramatically more needs to be done to improve SA’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Read the full article and download the report here.
Mike Perk has been the digital industry since the '90s, contributing to 16 pager internet marketing magazines back when Google didn't even exist. Now, Perk is considered one of the top DX (um, that'd be 'digital transformation') consultants working in Africa. He is British though, so, in this critical presentation on digital change management, Perk uses 'The Great Escape' as a backdrop to four singular elements to remember when entering the 4th Industrial Revolution.
Heavy Chef CEO, Fred Roed talks to Joffy Senekal, the entrepreneur behind 1 For The Road. Joffy spent over 20 years in the liquor industry working with the world's best-known brands, He then took a decision in 2010 to leave it all behind to start 1 For The Road, a project close to his heart after having spent decades at networking events where alcohol was on tap and available in abundance to everyone in attendance.
Heavy Chef spoke to Abongile Salli, an art entrepreneur who aims to uplift the township creative community by identifying latent artistic talent and finding a home for their work in African hotels and restaurants. Abongile Salli is 24yrs old, born and bred in Cape Town and complimented his grade 12 in Thandokhulu High School by graduating from Cape Peninsula University of Technology, majoring in Sport Management. Abongile has faced down significant hardship to get his business off the ground - and he shares the lessons that he has learned along the way.
Heavy Chef's CEO Fred Roed spoke to Jacques Oberholzer, co-founder and head of User Experience at Now Boarding Digital. He is currently based in Zurich, Switzerland, where he is involved in digital projects for the European market. Fred asked him about the key to great product design, remote working and how big corporates have come around to understanding the power of great User-Experience (UX).
On Thursday 14th December, entrepreneur community platform ‘Heavy Chef’ and Huawei Mate10 Pro revealed SA’s top 5 most exciting startups as nominated by industry peers. The keynote speaker on the evening was Silicon Valley’s ‘Unicorn Whisperer’ Zach Coelius, who also led a business Masterclass earlier in the day.
Mike Sharman, founder of marketing communications agency Retroviral, is a seasoned serial entrepreneur. Sharman recently added the moniker 'best selling author' to his resume, after his debut book "The Best Dick" flew to the Top 10 at book outlets across the country. Prior to Sharman's MC gig at Heavy Chef's end of year celebration event, Heavy Chef CEO Fred Roed interrogated him on his comedic career and how it helped him to become an award-winning entrepreneur and writer.
The legal profession is changing rapidly, so we reached out to Graeme to find out how one of the oldest, most venerable professions is being disrupted. Graeme’s advice: Young lawyers should forget about the practice of law and focus on the delivery of law. They should not fear technology and AI, they should hone their EQ and collaborate with the machines.
On 14th December, Heavy Chef and Huawei will reveal South Africa's top 5 most exciting startups. The event is going to have Silicon Valley investor and entrepreneur Zach Coelius as a keynote speaker, along with an exciting array of startup founders from South Africa speaking about their world changing products. This is not to be missed!
Magda Wierzycka, the controversial CEO of Sygnia, gave a fascinating insight into her journey from Polish refugee to polarising public figure, at two packed Heavy Chef sessions held in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Magda is reviled by certain parties in government, resented by many of her peers in the financial services industry and loved by harangued South African citizens who feel helpless in the face of growing corporate corruption and greed.