Phumelele "Phumi B" Bohlela
Youth & Woman Township Social Entrepreneur, UGU South Coast, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa
Founding Director of IYACHICHIMA SOCIAL ENTERPRISE – Township Entrepreneurship & Rural Development, Youth & Women Empowerment, UGU District Young Women Chairperson, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.
Marketer by profession and a dancer by passion with 8 years corporate global marketing experience and 3 years as self employed. She is a Mandela Washington Fellow: Business & Entrepreneurship (Texas, USA) and the Founding Director of IYACHICHIMA SOCIAL ENTERPRISE made of youth and women focused brands in:
- EDUCATION: Phindavele Creche NPO
- HEALTH: Honey B Health & Wellness Spa
- ENTREPRENEURSHIP: Loxion Biz (Radio Show & Small Business Exhibition Events)
Award-winning Social Entrepreneur, UGU District Young Women’s Chairperson, Top 1000 Young African Leaders in 2017 and Mandela Washington Business & Entrepreneurship Fellow (University of Texas, Austin), Phumi is a University of Pretoria Graduate with a BCom: Communication Management Degree that majored in Communication Management, Marketing Management and Statistics.
After 8 years of global corporate marketing experience in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Singapore, South East Asia and the Middle East, Phumelele left Unilever to start her own social enterprise. She has extensive experience in strategic marketing development, brand development, brand building and retail marketing; with a list of successful product innovations, international brand launches and leading local brand activations.
Her passion for youth and women empowerment led her to full-time self-employment in 2016. Through her marketing-centric business, Iyachichima Social Enterprise, Phumi is on a mission to address social ills that exist in the township and rural environment by creating, implementing and monitoring socio-economic development projects and programs.
Through education, health and entrepreneurship, IYACHICHIMA specializes in building brands, uncorking potential in individuals & companies and empowering communities; pouring its impact to receptive markets. IYACHICHIMA sees itself as a catalyst in creating an ecosystem of entrepreneurial development on the UGU South Coast by connecting youth and women with industry experts, the public sector and private sector.
Based on the Lower South Coast of Durban; Iyachichima’s operations span across the KwaZulu-Natal Province with a vision to stretch and attract tourists and investors beyond South Africa’s national, continental and international boundaries.
Richmond Kwame Frimpong
Managing Director of AsaaseGPS, Accra, Ghana
Richmond Kwame Frimpong is the Managing Director of AsaaseGPS (a member of the Vokacom Group), with responsibility for sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East and Parts of Asia(SMEA). His inspiring leadership with an excellent record in transforming businesses spanning Technology, Financial Services and Consulting across Africa has earned him a number of awards including the 40Under40 Young Achievers’, 50 Most Influential Young People in Ghana and one of Top 60 Young Business Leaders’ in West Africa. His over a decade’s experience in the Financial Services Industry comes with a rare blend of Operational Strategy, Business Transformation, Marketing Communications, Fund Management, and Human Capital Development. Prior to AsaaseGPS, he was Country Head for Ghana’s Biggest Retail Pensions Trustee. Before that, he was Vice President responsible for Sales, Distribution and Business Transformation for one of Africa’s biggest Investment Banks; Databank Group. He subsequently worked as Head of Capital Markets and Executive Director for Pensions with responsibility for four Corporate Trustee Companies at The BEIGE Group.
Richmond graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Philosophy from University of Ghana, an MBA from the Paris School of Business (PGSM), France and currently a Doctoral specialization in Global Business and Leadership(DBA) from Cal University in the US. He is an Associate Chartered Marketer, licensed investment advisor, licensed retirement planning trustee, global convener for Africa’s Biggest Tertiary Campuses Career Conference reaching over 200,000 young people, an author of 5 Personal Development books and a global youth mentor, recently voted as one of Top 100 Speakers in Ghana by the African Speakers’ Bureau. He is married and blessed with three wonderful kids; Lady, Jason and Beryl.
CEO of the Uganda Hotel Owners Association, Uganda
Jean Byamugisha is the, the only trade association for the Hotel Sector in Uganda. With over 500 member hotels, UHOA is the biggest as well as one of the oldest private sector Associations in Uganda’s tourism sector.
Ms. Byamugisha is the first female CEO of the Association as well as the youngest CEO in the history of UHOA. She has also been recognized as one of the 20 Best performing CEOs in Uganda in a survey carried out in December 2018. She was voted among the top 100 women in Tourism in Africa in 2017 as well as one of Uganda’s Top 40 CEO’s under 40 in 2018.
Ms. Byamugisha has a Bachelor’s Degree in Tourism Management from Makerere University, one of Africa’s oldest and best universities as well as a host of post graduate certifications from different institutions. Jean is very passionate about the tourism industry and has acted as Mentor to many hospitality students in different universities in Uganda. In her spare time, Jean is an avid reader and traveller.
Senior Commercial Manager, Travelstart
Linda Balme has been in the travel industry for 18 years. After 14 years in senior management roles, across 4 countries, leading 6 different brands, Linda returned to South Africa to join Africa’s largest on-line travel company, Travelstart, as their Senior Commercial Manager.
Recognized by industry professionals for her passion as well as her ability to create vision and buy-in, she is entrusted with the relationship between international tourism boards, travel providers and corporate partners, to promote African inbound and outbound tourism. With an audience size of 25 million across all online and offline channels, Travelstart is in a position to increase both awareness and increased passenger numbers to different destinations.
Dr. Dennis Bamidele Sunday
Director General National Center for Youth Development Abuja, Nigeria
Dr Dennis Bamidele Sunday born in the heart city of Lagos Nigeria in the year 1970 holds a PhD in Development Planning from the University of Nigeria, Nussuka and a M.sc in Economics from the University of Lagos.
Dennis has more than 14 years of development sector experience having worked in both the public and civil society sectors, specifically in youth development, gender equality, job creation and poverty eradication and elevation. His previous notable achievements include being a member of the Task Team responsible for developing poverty alleviation strategies for the Nigerian government. At the Rural & Urban Sector Network, he was involved in the development of guidelines for the implementation of the National Youth Agency Process. He was part of the research team that investigated and made a report to the Lagos Ministry of women affairs and poverty eradication on configuration of youth development, job-creation, skill acquisitions and empowerment. Between 2005 and 2011 he was responsible for overseeing the work of the National Youth Service corps in the social, environment and infrastructure sectors. He has a strong interest in gender and poverty issues and strongly advocates the participation of women and youth in the Built Environment. In his current position the Director General at the National Center for Youth Development Dr Dennis Bamidele Sunday has travel widely presenting papers and seminars around the world on Youth and human capital development.
He has been mandated to oversee the implementation of the National Youth Service and Skills Development Programmed, facilitating the mainstreaming of youth development across government agencies and fostering partnerships with civil society and the private sector to increase development opportunities for young people.
General Manager - CO FOUNDER (myGO WORLWIDE - AFRICA)
Donald is an expert in the aviation, tourism and hospitality industries. He has successfully established several businesses in Africa. He is currently the CEO of ISAGI AVIATION, an industrial aircraft maintenance company. He is also the President of RHEMA CONSULTS INT’L,A tourism firm aimed at providing solutions to promote E-tourism in Africa. He is the current General Manager -Co founder of myGO AFRICA, subsidiary of myGO GROUP, a hotel reservation platform for the B2B market based in Brussels-Belgium and working with close to 470.000 hotels in 196 countries of the world.
Prior to that, Donald has been working as a senior consultant in a Kenyan consulting firm ENREAL LTD. KENYA, where he brilliantly acted as a Business Development Manager for East Africa and as the Managing partner for ENREAL West Africa. He elaborates sectorial development strategies for countries, regions and cities to develop coherent emerging plans in Africa. He strongly believes that Africa has enough potency and resources to develop and extol herself for win-win opportunities offered in the business ecosystem. M. Djobo is very engaged in the tourism sector and he currently presides an Association called « REPT-CI » in partnership with the National Tourism Board in Cote d’Ivoire with the motive of promoting the Ivorian destination during World Tourism Exhibitions. His passion for Tourism has taken him to various countries of the world promoting Tourism in Africa. He thereafter, founded AFRICA TOURS CENTER, an African Tourism Information Center based in Dakar – Senegal which is also the official organizer of the AFRICAN TOURISM WEEK.
He holds a Bachelor Degree of Business Administration at Methodist University College – Ghana and a postgraduate diploma at the London School of Business and Technology.
Abena Pokuaa Amoah Boaitey
CEO, Golden Beach Hotels Group Ghana
Mrs. Pokuaa Boaitey is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Golden Beach Hotels Group with over 500 employees under her supervision and management . She is a United Kingdom (UK) trained hospitality and tourism expert in management and leadership. She has extensive experience in training and development, with over 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry. She is also a customer service specialist and a qualified lecturer in Hospitality, Tourism and Marketing.
Very passionate about her work, she started from the bottom as a room attendant and worked her way up in various hotels in the UK, including Marriott, London Hilton and the Dorchester Hotel. After her sojourn in the UK, Mrs. Pokuaa Boaitey returned to Ghana in 2007. Her first appointment was with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs where she was the events and operations manager. She then got engaged by Oak Plaza Hotel as a sales and marketing director and was part of the pioneer team that launched the hotel in Accra.
She has a BA (Hons.) in Hospitality and Tourism Management and a post graduate certificate in Education and Training. She is a member of the Tourism Society in the UK, a member of the United Nations Women in Tourism Committee and a board member of the HTM-Industry Advisory Board (UMES-USA).
Golden Beach Hotels gladden hearts
Golden Beach Hotels Ghana Limited (GBH), a wholly owned Ghanaian hospitality management company was incorporated on 24th June, 1999 under the Companies Code, 1963 (Act 179) of Ghana. GBH comprises La Palm Royal Beach Hotel in Accra, Elmina and Busua Beach Resort in the central and western regions respectively.
GBH, with all three of its hotels dotted along the coastline, has established a reputation as the finest resorts in Ghana. Each of the hotels provides maximum comfort and has the best business and conference facilities in the country. GBH’s philosophy is to provide its guests with a total tourism experience.
Mr Thulani Nzima
Indenpendent Consultant & Chairperson of Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency, South Africa
After graduating with a B. Com Degree at the University of South Africa (UNISA), Mr Thulani Nzima started his career in the banking industry with Perm Building Society in 1984, gaining experience in marketing and business development. He subsequently managed the Wynberg branch for four years, as one of the pioneering Black Executives at the time.
In 1991, he joined South African Airways (SAA) for a 14-year period which would nurture and hone his skills in all aspects of the local and international travel and tourism sector. Joining SAA as an Overseas Cadet Manager, Nzima gained experience and an understanding of particularly the Africa and Middle East markets. In 1993 Thulani was appointed Market Development Manager for SAA’s Asia and Australia markets before taking on a similar role for North and South America.
In 1997 Nzima was appointed SAA Regional Manager for Benelux countries and was based in Holland, with another office in Brussels. Here, he worked on SAA’s overall business strategy for the Benelux region, including sales plans, revenue targets, operating budgets, cargo and passenger operations. Thulani also managed SAA’s stakeholder relations with key airport authorities, government partners and foreign embassies. While based in Holland, Nzima sat on the Board of the Netherlands Foreign Airlines Association and Schiphol Operators Association, while also serving as a Member of the Netherlands and Belgian Chambers of Commerce.
At the end of 2000, Nzima returned to South Africa to take up the position of SAA’s General Manager for Kwazulu-Natal and Border, tasked to resuscitate the sales operations with responsibility for generating sales revenue, managing budgets, recruiting the sales team and for the airline’s corporate and government deals. In 2001, Nzima was appointed as Senior Executive Manager, with his tasks including the strategic realignment of SAA’s Voyager programme, driving SAA’s national and corporate retail sales strategy, its revenue and sales targets, as well as managing SAA’s key government account teams. He subsequently became SAA’s Senior Executive for Market South Africa, responsible for the rest of SAA’s revenue and sales teams in the country.
After a stellar career at SAA spanning nearly one and a half decades, Nzima joined South African Travel Centre (SATC) as its Chief Executive Officer in 2005. His tasks included overall business development strategy, assisting the Board with strategic business direction, as well as growing SATC’s business and franchise base while improving profitability. In addition to managing its operating budgets, Nzima helped SATC create new revenue streams, established international networks and alliances and a new strategic government plan and sales team. He held the position of Director and Board Member at the SA Travel Centre Group, was a Director and Chairman of Travel Experience (Pty) (a joint venture business with the Automobile Association – AA) Ltd. Nzima also served on the board of GlobalStar TMC International.
Nzima joined Avis Rent-A-Car South Africa in 2007 as Director of Sales and Marketing. In this role, he was in charge of all Avis’s sales and marketing strategy and all revenue-generating business streams, its international sales strategy and revenue generation, strategic partners and supplier strategy development, as well as the company’s call centre, internet and website development strategy. He was also responsible for the company’s communications and public relations strategy, its brand and corporate identity strategy and for its relationship with government and state-owned enterprises. While at Avis, he served as Divisional Board Director for Avis Rent-A-Car Southern Africa.
In January 2012, Nzima took the helm as Chief Executive Officer of South African Tourism, responsible for all operations of the national destination marketing organisation’s Head Office and its international country offices. His role included looking after the Grading Council of South Africa, the Leisure Tourism Business and the establishment of the Business Events under its National Convention Bureau. Thulani served as an ex officio board member at SA Tourism. His role included managing and optimising all market access platforms like Indaba, Meetings Africa (owned by SA Tourism) and other international trade shows where South Africa participated. Stakeholder management combining key tourism and hospitality players and government was a critical function for a successful CEO at this level.
After leaving the employ of SA Tourism in February 2016, Thulani currently chairs the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency Board. He is now a businessman with focus in fleet solutions & procurement, consulting in tourism, aviation, marketing, strategy and logistics.
CEO, Cape Town Convention Conference Centre
Julie-May Ellingson is an Urban and Regional Planner and Development Economist by
profession. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Development Administration and Economics and a Master’s Degree in Town & Regional Planning. She joined the Cape Town International
Convention Centre (CTICC) in September 2014 as their Chief Executive Officer. Julie-May has
over 20 years’ experience in the built environment and tourism sector, and has worked
extensively in the private and public sector.
COO - Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Harare, Zimbabwe
Givemore is holders a Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS) Degree majoring in Tourism and Transportation from the University of Applied Sciences, Worms, Germany and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) in Marketing from the City University, Bellevue, Washington, USA. He joined the tourism industry straight form university in 1986, starting his career as an Assistant Research and Planning Officer for the then Zimbabwe Tourist Development Corporation. He rose through the ranks of Research and Planning Officer, Research and Planning Manager, Head of the Research and Planning Division and served in the Diplomatic Field as the Tourism Attaché for Zimbabwe responsible for Continental Europe and based in Frankfurt, Germany from 1996 – 2001.
Chidzizi returned to Zimbabwe as Marketing and Communication Director for the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and rose to the current position of Chief Operating Officer of the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, a position held since 2010 interspaced with several stints as Acting Chief Executive. In this position, he has been involved in the development of tourism legislation and policy, marketing strategy, destination branding and institutional capacity building, representing Zimbabwe on the Regional Tourism Organisation of Southern Africa (RETOSA), regional initiatives such as the Kavango Zambezi (KAZA) Transfrontier Conservation Area, African Union Tourism initiatives as well as the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). He also serves on several Boards in Zimbabwe.
Among these are the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Corporation (SMEDCO), Council Member of the Manicaland State University of Applied Sciences (2017 – 2019) and Zimbabwe Tourism Authority representative on the Tourism Business Council of Zimbabwe Board.
Lipian B Mtandabari
Founder and Director, Phezulu Safaris - Tourism and Logistic, Zimbabwe
A young tour operator and professional safari specialist with a combined experience of eight years of running a thriving tourism business in Zimbabwe and recently in South Africa. Lipian Bongani Mtandabari is the founder and Director of Phezulu Safaris in Zimbabwe (established in 2012). Due to his strong passion for tourism and promoting equality through travel, he incepted Ntsako Travel Africa in 2018, an Exclusive Pan African LGBT travel company. The primary philosophy of Ntsako Travel Africa is to sell southern Africa as an emerging destination for LGBT+. In addition to promoting the destination, Ntsako Travel Africa is also involved in capacitating, developing and transitioning the service industry to embrace LGBT+ travel and become LGBT+ inclusive.
At the tender age of 25, Lipian has a strong interest in wildlife and environment conservation. He currently sits on the boards of several conservation organisations in Zimbabwe, including one which he founded. He is an alumni and current mentor of the Tony Elumelu Foundation – Entrepreurship Forum.
Lipian’s passion and innovation in the tourism and conservation field has been recognised by his African peers who adjudicated him as runner up in the 2018 Outstanding Entrepreurship Category of the Pan African Africa Tourism Leadership Awards held in Accra Ghana.
Having read for Construction Management Studies at Wits University and spending weekends reciting French and Mandarin at the Language School, Nkululeko Mthembu’s work has now taken a different path.
Nkululeko Mthembu is Director at PISTA, a research,design and innovation firm at the intersection of design thinking, cultural intelligence and technology. The meeting of these three disciplines is what he calls innovation.
PISTA is a culmination of his life’s work as a transdisciplinary and multidisciplinary firm to solving problems in FMCG industries, healthcare, financial services, government, education & corporate Africa.
Mthembu founded The Durban Innovation Hub in 2014, a vehicle to create an enabling environment for local technology-driven entrepreneurs and equipping them with functional tools. Programmes under The Durban Innovation Hub included: Google Developer Group, Random Hacks of Kindness (a programme funded by NASA) and Hacka Durban.
In 2014 again, he led a strategic partnership with the Global Entrepreneurship Network to form Startup Nations Kwazulu Natal. The purpose of this vehicle was to expand the reach and impact of Startup Nations South Africa in the province. A dual initiative of The Innovation Hub, Wits Business School, Industrial Development Corporation and the Department of Small Business.
In 2015 – 16, he spent a considerable amount of time abroad, namely England to immerse himself in a global startup ecosystem. During his time he visited prestigious institutes Cambridge and Oxford University (meeting Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Member of Parliament Lord Mervyn King), UK Trade & Investment, Innovate UK, The Legatum Institute, Google, RSA Institute, Loughborough University to mention a few.
This immersion saw him bring best practice on new venture creation, business development, value proposition crafting, enterprise scaling and route to market strategies, partnerships and emerging markets business case development with the hopes of cross-pollinating some of these global techniques into African startups.
In 2017, Mthembu, together with the Global Shapers Community in Africa – an initiative of the World Economic Forum – embarked on an ambitious project of championing the African Continential Free Trade Agreement under the Open Africa Initiative specifically geared to prioritising interests of youth in Africa.
During this time Mthembu spent four months backpacking through various African states, via road and passing border posts, connecting with Global Shapers in each country where a town hall-type event was hosted with business and policy leaders. Mthembu gathered invaluable insights on the challenges of doing business in Africa which culminated at the African Union, Addis Ababa.
He leads a less exciting life reading for his Bachelor of Business, volunteers his time at the Durban Chamber of Commerce & Industry as Member of Council & Chairperson of Youth in Business Forum and vests a large haul of his time to his practice PISTA with the hopes of creating the most culturally-minded design & innovation firm.
Olufemi Barrison Lawson
Chairman and CEO Skyview Communications Nigeria
Mr. Olufemi Barrison Lawson, is the Chairman and CEO Skyview Communications, Nigeria. He is an astute brand strategist with over twenty two years hands on experience across different sectors from Communications, Finance, Tourism, (FMCG pls write this in full) and Real Estate. His leadership skills and strategic thinking has been delivered in different roles from Client Service Executive, to Account manager, Media and Communication Strategy Planner and Executor Copy Writing and Creative Director.
Femi was head of Coporate communications for three major companies in three different sectors and rose to the head of Purchase/Admin and the Accounts department. He has served as Special and personal assistant to some managing directors of main player organizations in Nigeria. As an innovator and creative thinker, he has had the privilege to work on marketing communications strategies and execution for different local and international brands. He recently created the identity and marketing communications for the first ever prestigious drum Festival in Nigeria and Africa. The Nigeria Drum festival 2016 now called AFRICAN Drum Festival). Mr. Femi Lawson just launched the first Virtual Tourism in Nigeria. A tool used to promote and sell Nigeria’s tourism potentials and many other creative ideas.
With the aim to be a seasoned professional, Mr. Femi Lawson has attended diverse professional, Management and Leadership trainings locally and internationally. These programs and courses focus on strategy, communications, insurance, marketing, sales, personal and interpersonal skills, banking, micro finance marketing, travel and tourism, leadership, etc. He is a regular attendee of the yearly Global Leadership Summit in Willow Creek Community, Illinois Chicago and the Daystar annual Excellence in leadership conference in Lagos Nigeria.
Mr. Lawson recently bagged the Global Peace Award from Dame Munni Irone of Art 4 Peace Award Organization from Beverly Hills, United States of America. This alongside other number of awards,
Femi has Basic Certificate in Leadership from the Daystar Leadership Academy, Certificate in Media Enterprise from the Pan-Atlantic University, Certificate in Strategic Brand Management from the London School of Business and Finance. He is an associate member of the Advertising Council of Nigeria, a Member of the Nigerian Institute of Management and holds an HND Certificate in Mass Communications.
Mr. Olufemi Barrison Lawson is married with children.