Networking Webinar: 28 May 2020, Speaker: Daniel Silke Topic: Navigating the Post-Covid South Africa – Political and Economic Challenges

Networking Breakfast Friday 12th May 2017 Speaker : Ian Wason CEO of the IDM Group, South Africa’s largest debt management business


TOPIC : In 2015 the World Bank found that South Africa was the most over-indebted consumer nation on earth. The situation has deteriorated even more since then. How did we get here? Ian will talk to us about the scourge of debt in South Africa, the failings of the National Credit Act, and what we, as employers have a responsibility to do for our staff and society at large.

Ian Wason is a businessman and social entrepreneur, creating several successful online financial services businesses in South Africa that educate and assist consumers with Financial Services.

After obtaining a BSc in Economics at Bristol University, Ian qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Deloitte in London, working in their Financial Services division.

In 2003, Ian moved to Cape Town and spent a year working voluntarily for an NGO assisting entrepreneurs in starting up and managing their businesses.  In 2004, at the age of 26, Ian started the IDM Group, leveraging his experience in Financial Services and unique insight into the South African consumer to create South Africa’s largest Debt Management business. The IDM Group employs around 350 staff in Cape Town and Mauritius, has won multiple Debt Counselling Awards, and most importantly, has assisted over 50,000 consumers on their path to debt freedom, as well as giving free impartial advice and credit reports to over half a million South Africans. Ian is a passionate consumer activist focused on increasing the financial literacy of South Africans and has presented for numerous leading financial institutions around the world on the South African consumer.

Networking Breakfast: 17 March 2017, Speaker: Adv Thuli Madonsela, Topic: Why ethical leadership will help us create the Africa we want


Adv. Thulisile (Thuli) Nomkhosi Madonsela is the Chief Patron of the Thuli Madonsela Foundation and a Harvard Advanced Leadership Fellow for the year 2017. Upon her return to South Africa, she will take up a chair in social justice at the Law Faculty at Stellenbosch University (SU).

Adv. Madonsela is the former Public Protector of the Republic of South Africa serving as the head of this Chapter Nine Institution for a seven-year term. In that time she was conferred with four honourary doctorates of law from Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town, Rhodes University and the University of Fort Hare.

Adv. Madonsela has received various awards and recognition during and since her time in office as the Public Protector. She was also named amongst Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the world in 2014 and as Forbes Africa’s Person of the Year in 2016. She received Transparency International’s Integrity Award in 2014, the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) inaugural Truth and Justice Award, and recently, the Satyagraha Award at the Mahatma Gandhi Awards and the Commonwealth Lawyers’ Association Rule of Law award.

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Networking breakfast: Wednesday, 22 February 2017, Speaker: DAVEY DU PLESSIS, Topic: CHOOSING TO LIVE – AN AMAZON ADVENTURE









Paddling the mighty Amazon river,  cycling the continent of Africa and running 1000 km across South Africa, Davey takes us odavey-du-plessisn a wild, entertaining and engaging journey through his adventurous expeditions.

It was during the Amazon expedition,where Davey narrowly escaped his death and from this story he shares the resilience of the human spirit and the power within compassion.

A highly entertaining, thought-provoking and intriguing presentation, sure to leave you inspired to be more and give more.




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Networking Breakfast: 26 January 2017 Speaker: TONY LEON Topic: South Africa: Present tense, future imperfect

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Tony Leon, ex Member of Parliament for 20 years, thirteen as leader of the Democratic Alliance, is a trained lawyer who actively participated in the critical constitutional negotiations which led to the birth of a democratic South Africa and served as a co-chairman of the Constitutional Assembly’s Theme Committee on Fundamental rights.


After leaving Parliament he became the SA Ambassador to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.  He consults to businesses both locally and abroad and has a special interest in risk consulting on Africa and South America and on navigating the intricacies of the booming markets of South America.


He is now Executive Chairman of Resolve Communications (Pty) Ltd, a South African consultancy specialising in crisis communications, reputation management, government relations and advocacy.


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Networking breakfast: 9 December 2016: SPEAKER: Ryan Stramrood; TOPIC: Push Past Impossible

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South African, Small Business Owner, Family Man and Average Joe.

However his hobby is Ultra Extreme Open Water and Ice swimming, and for deeply personal reasons, he has undertaken some of the world’s most extreme challenges. Pushing his limits and human boundaries in our planet’s most inhospitable places.

Following painful, pioneering training techniques and using what limited resources he can find to put basic safety procedures in place, he challenge himself by pushing personal limits for swimming in ice water, and often set new benchmarks for human endurance.

No wetsuits or protection from the cold water – Speedo’s only. His adventures, world first achievements and the often death-defying circumstances, make for brilliant tales of human spirit and victory.

He takes audiences on a journey with him. Through story telling and strong visuals, he illustrates just how limited and governed we all are, in every aspect of our lives, by believing in our own limitations.

How we under achieve in our comfort zones and how each and everyone of us can push past impossible.

Swimming Achievements:

62 Robben Island to Mainland crossings

Solo swim across the English Channel

First South African Male to Swim Europe to Africa – Gibraltar Strait

World First swim around the Southern most tip of South America – Cape Horn

World First Official ICE MILE swum north of the ARCTIC CIRCLE – 0C water

Historic Russia to USA relay swim

First Official ICE MILE swum in Antarctica – minus 1C water

World First Double Relay crossing of the North Channel, swimming from Ireland to Scotland and back to Ireland


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Networking breakfast: Friday 23 September 2016, Speaker: Luvuyo Rani, Topic: Doing business – Challenges and Opportunities

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Luvuyo raniLuvuyo Rani is both a visionary and an award winning entrepreneur. He is a graduate of the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business, plus has a BTech in Business Administration – Business Studies and a B Tech Degree in Commercial Education- Economics.  Luvuyo is the director of the award winning Silulo Ulutho Technologies, a Cape Town based IT services company with over twenty branches. He has received many awards which have generated considerable media exposure.  For his extraordinary work providing access to technology, Luvuyo was named one of the 2014 JCI Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World recipients in the category of business, economic, and/or entrepreneurial accomplishment. 2016 Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur.

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Networking Breakfast: Thursday, 1 September 2016, Speaker: Aubrey Matshiqi: Topic: The Political landscape 2016 – 2019




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Aubrey Matshiqi, political analyst are used by private companies, fund managers, international investors, academic institutions, local and international research institutions, foreign embassies and political parties. He specialises in South African Politics with a special focus on the ANC and the Alliance, the re-alignment of opposition political politics, electoral system reform, Gender, Identity and the state of democracy in South Africa.

Before he joined the Helen Suzman Foundation as a research fellow in 2011, Matshiqi was a senior research associate at the Centre for Policy Studies.

Matshiqi is a former Mathematics, Science and English teacher and government strategist and spokesperson, and holds a degree in History and English Literature.

He is also a former member of the United Democratic Front, African National Congress and the South African Communist Party.

He writes regularly for publications in and outside South Africa. In addition, he is a regular guest on talk radio and TV News Channels both in South Africa and internationally.

He has written policy briefs, academic articles and book chapters on topics such as:
• The one party state in Africa and lessons for South Africa
• The re-alignment of opposition politics in South Africa
• The implications of the Jacob Zuma corruption trial for the South African criminal justice system.
• The African Agenda and the UN Security


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Business Networking LUNCH: 28 July 2016, Speaker: Suzanne Ackerman-Berman, Topic: Transformation Leadership

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Suzanne Ackerman

Suzanne Ackerman- Berman, Transformation Director @ Pick ‘n Pay – Whilst a student at UCT, she was the first woman to chair the University Students Fund raising Rag committee and was elected vice-chair of SHAWCO.  After university, Suzanne received extensive training in supermarkets in France and UK. She settled in France, ran her own businesses in restaurants and nightclubs in a French Ski resort for 7 years. Returning to South Africa, she joined the family business as a trainee manager in fresh foods.  During her 20 years in the Company, she worked in various positions starting from Floor management, and buying, to General Manager of Corporate Affairs and Social Responsibility.  She founded the Small Business Incubator that seeks to address the social and economic inequalities of the past created by the Apartheid era, by providing access to the formal market for small and previously disadvantaged entrepreneurs. A passionate proponent for equality, job creation and skills development, Suzanne assists many new entrepreneurs in all aspects of business and life skills through a detailed mentorship programme that ensures their sustainability as suppliers to the broader economy.


  • Fellow of the First Movers Programme of the Aspen Business Institute of Management, NY.
  • Co-authored a business book with Raymond Ackerman, “A Sprat to Catch a Mackerel”, dealing with the development of entrepreneurs in South Africa.
  • Lectures local and International MBA Students of Business Ethics and Practices in South African Retail.
  • Represented Pick n Pay and South Africa at National Retail Federation conferences delivering addresses in New York, USA and Sao Paolo, Brazil.
  • Appointed as Honorary member to International Golden Key Association,
  • Melvin Jones Fellow – Lions Club International and Louis Volks Humanitarian Award
  • Honorary award for “Socially Responsible Capitalism” from IDC Herzlyia Campus, Israel, 2014
  • Inspirational Leadership Award 2015 – Rutgers School of Business , Camden
  • Speaker TEDX Berkeley, USA – Feb 2015


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