Santam, FAIRLADY and TRUELOVE Magazines have partnered up in the search to find the best female entrepreneurs in the country: three amazing women who are creating opportunities for others and boosting South Africa`s economy by setting up their own businesses.
The panel of respected judges presiding over the awards are:
Professor Thuli Madonsela
Chair of Social Justice at Stellenbosch University & Founder of Social Justice M-Plan and the Thuma Foundation, Professor Madonsela has been part of the judging panel since its inception. She believes that to be an entrepreneur, you need an idea, passion and the ability to work hard. ‘I will be looking out for a woman who is building a world she wants to live in. She also needs to be looking to the future – and the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,’ says Professor Madonsela.
Dynamic social entrepreneur, professional speaker and third-time judge Dawn Nathan-Jones believes that women play a pivotal role in business leadership and entrepreneurship. She says that we need to encourage more women to build businesses that can weather the disruption caused by evolving technologies. ‘I will be looking for someone who embraces technology to enhance their business,’ says Nathan-Jones.
The Executive Head of Human Resources at Santam, Enid Lizamore believes that female entrepreneurs will play a significant role in the future of SA’s economy. She encourages entrepreneurs never to lose sight of their business goals, especially during these tough economic times, now made even tougher by the Covid-19 pandemic. ‘I am looking for a woman who displays courage, constantly challenges herself to think differently and is passionate about making a meaningful difference in South Africa,’ says Lizamore.
Radio and TV presenter, author, producer and facilitator Redi Tlhabi believes that the spirit needed to keep South Africa afloat is one of endurance and perseverance.
‘The individual who will stand out for me is one who wants to make a difference and empower others as she rises up. That’s what it means to be an enterprising leader,’ says Tlhabi.
FAIRLADY Editor Suzy Brokensha believes that women can make a critical difference to South Africa’s fragile economy. ‘The figures coming out of South Africa – and the rest of the world – are really shocking in terms of the number of women who rise to board positions, let alone CEOs of companies. And yet it’s very apparent in South Africa that many women are running their own small businesses, and in many cases those small businesses are propping up and supporting communities. I’ll be looking for a woman with a great idea that can take both her business and the South African economy forward,’ says Brokensha.
TRUELOVE Editor Mbali Soga says Covid-19 has turned the way we do business on its head. ‘It can’t be business as usual when the economy starts to function again. Entrepreneurs were impacted heavily by the pressure of paying a workforce whilst not being able to do business under lockdown. The Santam Women of the Future competition comes at a time when entrepreneurs need it most – it’s like a glimmer of hope on the horizon. I’ll be looking for a woman whose business idea has longevity and has the ability to transform other people’s lives,’ says Soga.
Executive Head of Brand at Santam, Mokaedi Dilotsotlhe, believes that it is important now, more than ever before, for South African women to stand together. ‘The determination, strength and resilience of our female entrepreneurs make them true superheroes for many and are key attributes that we must continue to nurture and celebrate. We’re proud to be in our sixth year of a successful initiative in association with FAIRLADY and, for the first time this year, TRUELOVE, where we are able to showcase the powerful contribution that our Women of the Future are making in our society and country,’ he says.
New to the awards this year is our co-sponsor, Lulalend, who are all about providing fast and easy finance for your business.
Entrepreneurs can enter one of three categories and win incredible prizes:
• The SANTAM Woman of the Future title is awarded to an entrepreneur aged 30 or older whose business is older than 1000 days and who is well on her way to creating an empire.
• The SANTAM Rising Star title is awarded to an entrepreneur between 16 and 30 years old who is still within her first 1000 days but whose business, our judges believe, will flourish way beyond then.
• The SANTAM Social Entrepreneur title is awarded to an entrepreneur making a real difference in her community. Aged 30 or older, her business has survived the first 1000 days.
The prizes awarded to the three winners are:
• R80 000 in cash to the SANTAM Woman of the Future
• R50 000 each, in cash, to the SANTAM Rising Star and SANTAM Social Entrepreneur.
- All the winners will also walk away with:
- A PR package worth R10 000 from Lulalend
- A luxurious beauty hamper worth R5 000 from Estée Lauder
- Business printing worth R5 000 from Lithotech
- A course worth R17 000 from GIBS
- A Samsonite Zalia 2.0 Bailhandle worth R3 699
- A ladies wristwatch worth R1 095 from Missguided
- An hour’s invaluable mentorship with one of our judges
- A media training course