After launching the inaugural Fairlady Women of the Future Awards earlier last month, popular women’s glossy magazine Fairlady have announced their panel of respected judges who will be presiding over this prestigious competition in partnership with leading insurance company,
The first annual FAIRLADY Women of the Future Awards in partnership with Santam search kicked-off earlier last month with a call for entries from South African female entrepreneurs who have created successful businesses for themselves.
Two category winners will be announced in this ground-breaking competition: the FAIRLADY Woman of the Future 2015 and the FAIRLADY Rising Star 2015, with entries closing on 15 June.
In their bid to find the South African female entrepreneurs set to become the top businesswomen of the future, FAIRLADY magazine has co-opted some of SA’s finest businesswomen, personalities and opinion leaders to help adjudicate the FAIRLADY Women of the Future Awards in partnership with Santam. They are:
It was while celebrating FAIRLADY’s 50th birthday this year that FAIRLADY editor Suzy Brokensha decided it was time to inspire and encourage female entrepreneurs in South Africa to unearth their fullest potential and recognise their achievements as businesswomen. Brokensha says she is interested in finding a woman who has seen a real gap in the market, and who has managed to translate that vision into a truly viable business that is already employing – or has the potential to employ – other people too. “We believe in women, and we believe in business, and we believe that women have the potential to turn the South African economy around. So I’ll be looking for someone whose business could become a game changer in our economic environment.”
Santam’s executive head of brand, Yegs Ramiah, will be looking for a female entrepreneur who is a role model. “I am looking for someone who inspires others to create businesses that provide for their own financial stability and also create job opportunities for others,” she says. “Typically, the first 1000 days (or three years) are the hardest for any business. Entrepreneurs who reach this critical milestone are the ones that come up with creative solutions to obstacles and challenges. They are eager to learn, adapt quickly and inspire others to stay focused through good times and bad. To nurture entrepreneurship in SA as a driving force of economic growth, it is vital that successful entrepreneurs take the responsibility to share their learnings with other aspiring entrepreneurs.”
Thuli Madonsela, SA’s Public Protector and an advocate, is looking for a candidate with a ‘servant heart’, and someone who believes in South Africa’s future. She maintains that South Africa is a great place for entrepreneurs – that there are more opportunities to capitalise on here in South Africa than countries that have operated in a globalised environment. “The winner must see herself as part of a force to build our communities, this nation, our continent and ultimately, a better world,” says Madonsela.
As a well-known television presenter, MC and respected businesswoman, Gerry Elsdon is no stranger to both hard and smart work. She says women shouldn’t be afraid to ‘use their feminine attributes’ in the business arena, and feels that as with the top male businessmen, the right woman, with the right attitude, can make a great business owner. When it comes to the FAIRLADY Women of the Future in partnership with Santam entries, Elson says she is looking for someone who is ‘tenacious and determined.’ “I’m also looking for a woman who follows solid business principles while offering something unique.”
Zelda la Grange
Former private secretary to Nelson Mandela and author Zelda la Grange feels that an entrepreneurial spirit might be the solution to South Africa’s unemployment problem. She endorses the idea that entrepreneurship comes naturally to women, and encourages female business owners to enter the FAIRLADY Women of the Future Awards in partnership with Santam. “I will be looking for an entrant who displays creativity, integrity and dedication. It’s also one thing to be hands-on, but you need grit to succeed,” she says.
PRIZES ON OFFER
The FAIRLADY Women of the Future 2015 Award in partnership with Santam will go to an entrepreneur, 25 years or older, whose business has survived its first 1001 days (basically, the first three years) and who is well on her way to creating an empire. Prizes include R50 000 cash, a R7 500 online shopping voucher from spree.co.za, an invaluable mentorship session with one of the judges, a GALAXY Note 4 and GALAXY Tab S from Samsung, a Buren ladies watch and fragrance hamper from S Bacher & Company and a R5 000 part-time Damelin bursary.
The FAIRLADY Rising Star 2015 award will go to an entrepreneur aged between 16 and 25, whose business is older than six months but still within the first 1001 days of operation. Prizes include R20 000 cash, a R7 500 online shopping voucher from spree.co.za, an invaluable mentorship session with one of the judges, GALAXY Note 4 and GALAXY Tab S from Samsung, a Buren ladies watch and fragrance hamper from S Bacher & Company and a R5 000 part-time Damelin bursary.
Only female entrepreneurs who are residents of South Africa are eligible to enter the FAIRLADY Women of the Future 2015 Awards in partnership with Santam. The closing date for submission of entries is 15 June 2015. Finalists will be notified during July 2015.
The contest will culminate in a prestigious awards ceremony which will take place in Johannesburg in August 2015.
Entry forms and terms & conditions are available at www.womenofthefuture.co.za. For full details, get the latest issue of FAIRLADY magazine, on sale now!