MAGAZINE // 2015 Titans - Building Nations

LEADING EDGE // Entrepreneurial View

Entrepreneurship stems largely from the private sector and government’s responsibility is to create an environment that is conducive to entrepreneurial activity.


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CASE IN POINT // Bigen Africa

Many dream of leaving their mark on this world, but few attain that dream. Bigen Africa’s Dr Snowy Khoza has invested her life in creating a better tomorrow through various initiatives and projects. Her perseverance and living for more than herself have been essential in building a legacy for the next generation. Through her involvement as CEO, Bigen Africa has taken massive strides in reaching out to, and developing, the African continent.


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CASE IN POINT // Mabatho Events

It was a cold evening in Tshwane: the perfect setting for a brandy-tasting with Thamsanqa Makhehla and a fine meal prepared by restaurateur and chef Dino Retsos. The weather had the kind of chill factor where one holds onto one’s trench coat like a safety blanket. I had an awful cough that was doing the rounds in Tshwane. My voice had undertones of a chain smoker turned brandy drinker, giving me an air of respectability in terms of knowing something about the golden-coloured liquid.


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CASE IN POINT // Air Mauritius

Carla da Silva does not shy away from a challenge. When she joined Air Mauritius as the regional manager for Southern Africa and Latin America in 2010 she recognised that there were opportunities to improve the way that the airline generated business. Carla also recognised that she would need to inspire her team if she was to bring about the change that she knew was achievable in her own mind. 


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Africa is on the rise. Yes, the continent has its share of coups, kidnappings and corruption, but it is also a continent that speaks of survival, strategy and opportunity.  Speaking to decision-makers on a regular basis, they frequently comment on the talent within their organisations. Headlines can be discouraging. But some leaders have retained their optimism about South Africa and the continent’s prospects; countered by a healthy dose of realism. 


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The Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority (merSETA) was established in the year 2000. Their focus is on metal and engineering, auto manufacturing, motor retail and component manufacturing, tyre manufacturing, and plastics industries. In total merSETA is comprised of approximately 44 000 companies, with a workforce of about 600 000. At the helm of it all is Dr Raymond Patel, who has been the CEO since 2006.


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A quick conversation with any budding entrepreneur will reveal one of the most daunting challenges they face is securing funding. Often they find themselves dealing with organisations that are not attuned to the needs of entrepreneurs or for that matter, even understanding of their business aspirations.


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X AND Y // Without You

Just as much as there is a need for recognising the great women of our nation there is an equal call to recognise the Titans who are Building Nations. In 2014, for the first time, we launched the Titan’s recognition programme into the African Continent. Our publication’s pages were then, as they are now, filled with incredible men who have achieved enormous amounts in their sectors. Titans is proud to be partnered with such giants in government and business and we are excited to see what the future holds.


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X AND Y // You May Know My Name

Titans Building Nations showcases the achievements and abilities of the men who are the best of the best from all over Africa. In our second year we are seeing a wide range of skills across the various sectors and there is inspiration in each individual’s story. It is our privilege to bring to you tips and success stories on how to enhance skills, improving corporate governance and to work towards empowered leadership.


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X AND Y // Patron Page: SAMSA

Tsietsi Mokhele, also known as the Commander, is the CEO of the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA). SAMSA was established in 1998 in terms of the South African Maritime Safety Authority Act 5 of 1998 and is a South African government institution, accountable to the Minister of Transport. 


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SUSTAINABILITY // From Africa to the World

From time immemorial – in fact, since the days of colonialism – Africa has been known as an agricultural and mineral hub. In the century or so that has gone by, the continent continues to be regarded as a resource-rich place where any company that seeks to thrive will do well to set up base.


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EMPOWERED LEADERSHIP // Education - Now and Then

From teaching mathematics in Ghana to built educational technology in Uganda and observed technology use in townships in South Africa, Kentaro Toyama, WK Kellogg Associate Professor at the University of Michigan, former lecturer at Ghana’s Ashesi University, and author of Geek Heresy: Rescuing Social Change from the Cult of Technology, believes that, if anyone has ever looked over the shoulder of a child with a smartphone, they will see someone who is not using educational apps but playing video games.


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EMPOWERED LEADERSHIP // Does Africa need a Democracy

Singapore has transformed itself from a low-income backwater to a vibrant First World nation in one generation without the help of a democratic system. Does Singapore’s success make democracy redundant?


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Even in the 21st century, women’s equality within the workplace, especially in the higher ranks of an organisation, is still lacking. Recent studies in the European Union (EU) have shown a link between economic growth and women’s participation in the work populace. The overall performance and productivity of an organisation is also impacted by gender equality. Certain professions are seen as female-specific or male-suited within the culture of the business and, to break these moulds and bridge unequal opportunities for promotion and wages, organisations must look within. Saudi Arabia is testimony to how leaps can be made by implementing changes within a system.


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SKILLS TRANSFER // Manufacturing on the Continent

Africa is a continent of contrasts: between rich and poor, educated and illiterate, employed and unemployed, lush farmland and drought-ravaged wasteland, luxurious houses and shanty towns, and manufacturing powerhouses and roadside hawkers. Political instability, violent clashes, factionalism, extremism and kidnappings are included in the mix.


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SKILLS TRANSFER // Advances in Artificial Limbs

“Put your best foot forward!” we say. There is nothing wrong with wishing someone well, but what if someone has lost the use of their limb or limbs and, in a worst-case scenario, amputation has to be done? What most of us take for granted – our mobility –suddenly becomes a whole new ball game.


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Out of Office // The New BMW X5 M and New BMW X6 M

The new BMW X5 M and new BMW X6 M are setting the pace once again in the high-performance Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) and Sports Activity Coupé (SAC) segment. When the previous generation of the two vehicles arrived in 2009, it was the first time that the high-performance character distilled by BMW M GmbH had been transplanted into an all-wheel-drive BMW X model. The result was class-leading dynamics. The new BMW X5 M and new BMW X6 M pull no punches and continue their success story in respect of dynamic excellence and outstanding efficiency as thoroughbred SAC vehicles.


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