Stefan Antoni set up an architectural practice in 1987, which today is known as SAOTA – Stefan AntoniOlmesdahlTruen Architects. He is regarded as one of a number of architects who have contributed to setting a new standard of design and professionalism in the top end of the domestic market in South Africa. He completed his Bachelor of Architecture degree at the University of Cape Town in 1985 with a first class pass. Stefan is an extremely energetic and dynamic leader, with extraordinary creative talent and valuable negotiation and management skills. SAOTA – Stefan AntoniOlmesdahlTruen is driven by the dynamic combination of Stefan Antoni, Philip Olmesdahl and Greg Truen who share a potent vision easily distinguished in their buildings and an innovative and dedicated approach to the execution of projects internationally, nationally and locally. SAOTA is a firm of approximately 90 talented, young architectural designers and technicians including an in-house CGI and marketing team and a strong support of administrative staff. The company has received numerous awards and commendations from some of the most respected institutions worldwide.
Les Aupiais is the editor and creative vision behind a quarterly publication that offers a window into the world of the understated wealthy, Private Edition.One of South Africa’s most versatile, experienced and creative media figures, Les has worked in front of and behind the cameras. Her expertise was acknowledged nationally in her role as former reporter, now guest presenter and director on South Africa’s most influential investigative news programme, Carte Blanche. She is uniquely placed to advise companies on media and communication strategies and on how to handle radio and television interviews under pressure in her media training courses. Les has worked successfully with large corporations, with executive management teams, and has handled one-to-one coaching. Her way with words has seen her craft copy and steer the brand tonality for well-known commercials with a client list including Rezidor, One & Only &Shimansky. Her knowledge of what constitutes the exceptional in South Africa has secured her the role as former senior scriptwriter and final mix on SABC3’s magazine show Top Billing as well as Top Travel. She was the former Bureau Chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, the Editor of award-winning Sunday Life, quarterly magazine Icon and currently editor of award-winning magazine Private Edition. In her spare time, she has lectured executive short courses at Wits business school, Rhodes Business School and the Graduate School of Business and was a director/script writer on educational videos for the University of Cape Town.Using her insight, garnered from years working in the limelight, she is a media consultant/trainer/coach to several top companies including: Engen, Shell, Mastercard, Virgin Active, Singita and La Motte.
Southern Africa Luxury Association
Silvana Bottega is the CEO and founding director of the Southern Africa Luxury Association (SALA). Having completed a trilingual Masters degree in European Politics and Policy, Silvana secured a place on the sought after WPP fellowship programme designed to cultivate high-calibre management talent. She spent five years in Asia Pacific based in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing. Her initial secondment was at Enterprise IG and Bates 141 where she was handled regional business across Asia Pacific working on Harley Davidson, Motorola, Unilever and Coca-Cola. She was entrenched within the client businesses of Harley Davidson and Motorola to assist operations management and market entry strategies across first and second tier cities in China. Silvana was also involved in global knowledge management and delivered training sessions on brand strategy processes. After WPP, Silvana joined Lowe Worldwide as channel planning director for all key clients for the Greater China office creating brand activation and strategic planning disciplines for multi-nationals like Johnson & Johnson, Nestea (Coca-Cola), Ovaltine, Dumex and Unilever, before returning to South Africa. Silvana has the ability to deliver on many aspects of brand strategy; brand discovery, strategy formulation, product development, brand engagement, retail analysis and brand experience. She has worked in financial services (DBS in Singapore, HSBC Asia Pacific), FMCG (Coca-Cola, Masterfoods, Unilever), and telecommunications (China Mobile, Nokia and Motorola). In South Africa, she writes for numerous publications including Prestige, Opulent Living, Live Out Loud and Private Life. For the last 3 years she has committed herself to philanthropy, giving her time to run the Southern Africa Luxury Association. Her passion for accelerating artisan talent in South Africa has seen her help to build awareness around the craftsmanship and skills available in South Africa through her work with Aidan Bennetts, Keith White, Merchants on Long, Ardmore, Avoova and the like.
SA Gold Coin
Typical of many successful entrepreneurs, when Alan Demby entered the arena of gold exchange, he had a nominal initial starting capital of R1500. Fueled by a passion for collecting coins, during a period of compulsory conscription in the army, he quickly learnt their value and how to trade them. After the army, Alan took an office full time when he personally conceived and initiated the formation of the Gold Club in 1980. In 1989, he bought the Gold Coin Exchange from SAGE Holdings and later also bought out Eli Levine and took over the Gold Coin Exchange completely in 1992. Alan opened the ﬁrst Scoin Shop in 1999. It was the ﬁrst retail chain of coin shops in the world. Eleven years later there would be 30 countrywide and another four stores in the UK. The company was nominated as a top 300 Company by the DTI in 2003, even before it secured exclusive rights in 2004 to sell Nelson Mandela Medallions. Through these rights, Scoin have contributed over R2 Million to the Nobel Institute, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the FW de Klerk Foundation. In 2008, Alan set his sights on the UK in the aim to expanding the Scoin footprint internationally capitalizing on its growing retail presence and capacity to generate revenue and awareness online. Alan completed his B.Comm at WITS in 1967.
Group Executive Shared Services
Rob Dodds is the Group Executive, Shared Services for Ellerines Holdings Limited. He is also in charge of Public Relations and Store Development for the brands, as well as running the Property Portfolio for African Bank. Rob first entered the world of marketing when he joined 3M. Soon after, he headed up Sales and Marketing for the firm. Amongst other projects, Rob was responsible for launching Post It notes in South Africa. Rob was then head hunted first by Aramis, which he ran for a year, and then by Clinique. After running the cosmetics giant for a year he transferred to Canada as the largest affiliate country to Clinique USA. In only 3 years he was able to turn Clinique into the most successful cosmetics company in the region. Rob then transferred to the USA to take up the position as South West Regional Vice President for the Estee Lauder Company. A position he would hold for four years, before being promoted to Senior Vice President for Origins in North America. In this capacity Rob developed retail portfolio and did roll out, before returning home to South Africa. Here he joined Edcon, for which he cultivated the Prato and Temptations brands. Rob also started looking into Property Development in his personal capacity and consulted in Zambia regarding retail store development before taking the job at EHL. Rob graduated from the University of Pietermaritzburg with an Agricultural Degree.
Reciprocal Wine Trading Company
Michael Fridjhon is South Africa's leading wine authority, an internationally recognised wine judge and the country’s most widely published wine writer. He has over 35 years experience across every sector of the industry and has occupied key positions in retail, wholesale, and production. His fine wine and liquor consultancy has numbered amongst its clients almost all of the major multinationals as well as government departments. An authority on wine and the wine business, he lectures internationally and his product master-classes are presented to capacity audiences. In 1986 he co-authored (with Andy Murray) a book entitled Conspiracy of Giants, which has become the standard text at Oxford and Berkeley for post-graduate studies dealing with the relationship between government and business in the liquor sector. Michael is a former advisor to the Minister of Agriculture (1996 – 1999) where he was instrumental in securing a fund of just under R400m to be used for the economic, political and social transformation of the wine industry. From 1999 - 2001 he served as chairman of the SA Wine Industry Trust and during his term of office South Africa’s wine exports more than doubled. Michael is Chairman of the Judges at the South African Trophy Wine Show (Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show). He has also been Chairman of the Shiraz and Chenin Challenge panels and has judged at the International Wine Challenge, the International Wine and Spirit Competition, the Australian National Wine Show, the Royal Sydney, the Tri-Nations Challenge, the Five Nations Challenge, and competitions in Chile, Slovenia and the United States of America. Chairman of the SA Food & Wine Writers’ Guild, he has run a regular wine column for almost 30 years in addition to contributions for WINE Magazine, The World of Fine Wine (UK) Decanter (UK) La Revue du Vin de France, Wine Business International and Australian Gourmet Traveller. He has also written the Penguin Book of South African Wine, co-authors the annual Icons guide, and has contributed to the John Platter Guide, The Oxford Companion to Wine, the Hugh Johnson Wine Companion, and the Global Wine Encyclopaedia. He is currently Visiting Professor of Wine Business at the University of Cape Town's Graduate School of Business.
Head of Market
Michael Griffin is a serial entrepreneur with a track record for success. After a career creating leading strategies for key cellular manufacturers including Nokia and Motorola in Africa, he has taken on a new mandate in the luxury sphere to grow the footprint of Porsche Design across South Africa with 10 stores in key locations, aiming for a forecasted yearly turnover in excess of R240million. The first few months of 2012 marking a successful launch of its first store in Hyde Park Corner, has set the business on the right track for achieving that mandate. Porsche Design Group is a majority-owned subsidiary of Porsche AG in Stuttgart Germany, and is one of the leading luxury brands in the high-end men's and woman's fashion and accessory segments. It stands for products that combine function, timeless and purist design with impressive technical innovations. Porsche Design products are sold worldwide exclusively in Porsche Design stores, shop in shops, top-quality department stores and luxury retail outlets.
Haldane Martin Designs
Haldane Martin is a furniture and interior designer based in Cape Town, South Africa. His iconic designs have won numerous awards, the most recent being the Elle Décor ‘South African Designer of the Year’ 2010. His work has been exhibited internationally and is featured extensively in both local and international design publications. Haldane was also a guest speaker on the main stage at Design Indaba in 2007. The ethos of his designs meet the needs of the whole human being by designing iconic furniture and spaces that are meaningful for the spirit, beautiful for the soul, and nurturing for our bodies and the earth. He qualified as an Industrial Designer in 1992.
SourceSA was established in 2003, by Trevyn and her husband Julian, with the aim of promoting South African design to the global marketplace. 2011 sees the launch of the Southern Guild Design Foundation, in association with ArcelorMittal, where the focus will be on assisting and driving the design industry. The initiative is a dynamic way for SourceSA to leverage its existing business mandate, further supportingthe export of South African design. With an invited list of 45 of the top designers each year, new products are launched at the Joburg Art Fair. The Source client base includes many of the most important names in design retail around the world including The Conran Shops, Anthropologie, Jamie Oliver, Bergdorf Goodman, Terrain, Urban Outfitters, Soho House among many others. In addition to exporting product and designing spaces, Source also assists in presenting exhibitions of South African design in collaboration with highly regarded names such as Sir Terence Conran, Li Edelkoort and Keith Johnson at his gallery in the Rockerfellercentre in New York.With the aim of bringing local design to the attention of a South African audience, in 2010 Source undertook a major campaign in partnership with retailer Boardmans, bringing 200 products from 44 designers to nationwide consumers. The collection is ongoing with regular updates every season. Trevyn is a member of DNA, Design Network Africa, and with her husband they have worked on aprogramme for the Danish government working in 15 countries throughout Africa. Originally from Johannesburg, Trevyn McGowan spent twenty-two years in London where she ran the architectural design consultancy Site Specific. She supplied the most distinctive stores in the UK such as Liberty and The Conran shops.
Zeze Oriaikhi is the creator of the high-end bath and body-care range, Malée. Upon arrival in Johannesburg in 2009 she teamed up with leading South Africans in the cosmetics field to realize her ambitions of creating a 100% nature-inspired and uniquely South African range of beauty products. Zeze is passionate about global and African ethical & sustainable issues. This attitude is reflected in Malée’s philosophy; Malée’s products and packaging use 100% biodegradable ingredients and the company also works closely with a community project in Cosmo City to help women in the township by teaching them new skills and creating a source of income. Today Zeze’s brand produces cosmetics offerings, inspired by the African landscape. 26 year-old Nigerian Born Zeze, moved to London with her family when she was 13 years old. She completed her schooling in the UK before attaining her Masters in International Business at the Grenoble Graduate School of Business in 2008. She relocated to South Africa after her partner was transferred to Johannesburg from London.
The Liz McGrath Collection
Tony Romer-Lee is the CEO of The Collection by Liz McGrath, which includes The Cellars-Hohenort, The Marine, The Plettenberg and Beachyhead Villa. Romer-Lee was previously GM of the One&Only Cape Town. He began his foray into the industry at Thames Valley University in the United Kingdom where he studied hospitality and after making the move to South Africa, he spent five years as General Manager of the Cape Grace in Cape Town, where he was widely recognized for his strong leadership and forward-thinking management skills. After almost three years as Senior General Manager at Singita'sSabi Sand Game Reserve, Tony held the position of GM at the One&Only Cape Town, before taking up the mandate to oversee the operations and management of The Collection by Liz McGrath, that are all Relais&Chateaux properties.
Okapi & Merchants on Long
Hanneli, a painter by trade, began her career in the arts in the United Kingdom having graduating with honors from Wimbledon School of Art. She was a winning finalist in the Nationwide Mercury Awards for Art as well as an Exhibiting finalist in the Salon ‘Works of Art’ series. After a two year period in Athens and Florence, where she helped co-ordinate the first Athens Biennale and staged two solo shows she moved back to Cape Town to start an accessories line Okapi and the African concept store Merchants on Long. The Okapi range is designed, made and packaged entirely in Africa and is available at Merchants on Long. Located at number 34 on Cape Town’s famous Long Street, this salon store is a destination shop offering a rigorously edited range of top African design, fashion and art. Merchants on Long sources its stock exclusively on the continent, ensuring that all purchases contribute to the growth of the African market.
Andrew Tymms joined Bain & Company in 1995 where he has built up invaluable consulting experience working in their London, Sydney and Johannesburg offices. He is a member of Bain’s global Consumer Goods, Retail and Private Equity practices and has significant experience across a variety of retail sectors including luxury products, general merchandise, apparel, restaurants and hotels. He has lead over 20 commercial reviews for leading Private Equity funds on retailers in these sectors. Andrew has profound insight and understanding of the diamond industry where he worked with the leading diamond industry players for over 8 years. He also has functional experience focused on development of growth strategies, customer proposition development, retail category roles and guidelines and supply chain/ store implementation. Before joining Bain, Andrew worked for Marakon Associates from 1993-1995. He has a Bachelors in Electrical and Electronic Engineering degree with honors from the University of Melbourne.
Southern Sun Hotels
Graham Wood was appointed Managing Director of Southern Sun Hotels in September 2008. Previously he held the position of Divisional Director Resorts of Sun International limited. This position required strategic and operational leadership responsibilities for the African hotels including sales and marketing. Graham began his career in the hospitality industry in 1996 when he was hired by Sun International as a project accountant at the Sun City Resort. He successfully worked his way up the ladder within Sun International over the following 12 years ranging from Financial Manager of Operations to Chief Financial Officer, to Director of Operations at Sun City Resort in 2003. Graham was educated in Durban, where he matriculated in 1986 from Durban High School. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant and furthered his studies at various academic institutions in South Africa and abroad. He is a member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.