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South African Chamber of Commerce UK - A night of ‘UBUNTU’

In a warm and authentic celebration of cross-border collaboration and business excellence, the South African Chamber of Commerce UK, Business Awards Dinner was held in the heart of the City of London.

Hosted at Saddlers’ Hall on Wednesday 31 January, the South African Business Awards Dinner was an evening of recognition, networking, and celebration. This premier event provided a unique platform

for prominent business leaders, entrepreneurs, and professionals from the UK and South African business communities to connect, share insights, and explore potential collaborations.

The awards ceremony honoured businesses and individuals who have demonstrated outstanding

achievements, innovation, and resilience in their respective fields, symbolising the dynamic business landscape of both the UK and South Africa.

The night was one of ‘Ubuntu’ – the feelings of compassion, humanity and togetherness – where the audience were truly touched by the winners. This sentiment was totally relevant to the African proverb quoted by Chamber Chairman Sharon Constançon – “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

The rainbow nation was represented, as was the phrase’s creator – the country’s great leader, Mandela, who was referenced by three of the speakers. The most appropriate being that quoted by Chris Green, Office Partner of Hogan Lovells, the headline sponsor for the evening – “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others,”

matching the ultimate purpose of the Chamber.

The Chamber would like to congratulate all the finalists and the winners. Making it through the layers of judging is an amazing accomplishment and is well-deserved recognition. The Awards ensured that this achievement for 22 people and their businesses was celebrated. There were nine people that

tipped the post to be winners, half of these happened to be in SA and the other half in the UK. An online live broadcast brought all the finalists together globally, so all participants could rejoice in their recognition.

Learning the success stories, witnessing the evolution of gender and ethnic diversity successes and feeling the pride expressed by the winners was fascinating. Their exuberance, humbleness, instant sharing their wins with their teams and their gratitude for the value their business and their personal brand would gain was noteworthy.

The winners and finalists were as follows:

BUSINESS LEADER AWARD

Winner:

■ Sira Dheshan Naidu, Co-Founder/Owner, Disruptor London

Finalists:

■ Mteto Nyati, Executive Chairman, BSG

■ Martin Sweet, Managing Director, Primestars

BUSINESS WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARD

Joint Winners:

■ Koni Maliehe, CEO, Koni Wines

■ Caroll Masevhe, Managing Director, Kapcor Construction

Finalists:

■ Naledi McCarthy-Ocansey, Founder, Utour

■ Penny Streeter OBE, CEO, A24 Group

CHAIRMAN’S AWARD

Joint Winners:

■ Refilwe Buthelezi, President, Engineering Council of South Africa

■ Natalie Pollock, Managing Director, Sporting Chance

Finalist:

■ Adrian Gardiner, Executive Chairman, The Mantis Collection

DE&I LEADER AWARD

Winner:

■ Arlene Wilson-Max, Managing Director, Pan Africa Exchange

Finalists

■ Ruth Leas, CEO, Investec Bank plc (IBP)

■ Dr Arthie Moore-Robberts, Founder, Celebrating Humanity

ESG LEADER AWARD

Winner:

■ Jeremy Ford, Director & Trustee, Qhubeka

Finalists:

■ Songo Didiza, Founder and Director, Green Building Design Group

■ Ilana Friedman, Founding Director & CEO, Magical Moments

INNOVATOR OF THE YEAR AWARD

Winner:

■ Dr Jaishree Naidoo, CEO, Envisionit Deep AI

Finalists:

■ Dr Dean Allen, Historian, Author and Keynote Speaker

■ Marang Setshwaelo, Publicity Director Netflix, Sub-Saharan Africa

YOUNG BUSINESS LEADER AWARD

Winner:

■ Farai Ian Muvuti, CEO, The Southern African Times

Finalists:

■ Nicolette Nadia Mashile, Founder and Social Entrepreneur, Financial Fitness Bunnies

■ Mr TAP (Tebogo Aubrey) Poopedi, Founder and Station Manager, Skills Village Radio

Juliet Rushent, events manager for the Chamber enthused, “The Clerk, their team, the sound and

catering crews worked together it was a relaxed and enjoyable experience for all.”

Constançon concluded, “I would like to convey my heartfelt thanks to Hogan Lovells, our headline sponsor, and to all our other sponsors as well as to the various people who made this event a success. You are all much appreciated as without your support and participation this Business Awards Dinner would not be possible.” For more information visit www.southafricanchamber.co.uk

South African Chamber of Commerce UK – A night of ‘UBUNTU’

By Zambezzi

As an influencer my team and I create content or co-create content to support brands, endorse product and services with the intent to increase brand awareness and drive sales.

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