Harris Marley
Harris Marley

Global Courant

The 22nd Annual Top Empowerment Awards Ceremony, presented by Topco Media in association with Impumelelo Top Empowerment Companies, took place at the Indaba Hotel in Johannesburg on the evening of July 20, 2023. The awards ceremony celebrated and honored South African Purpose-Led Transformers and recognized their commitment and responsibility to secure a transformed and empowered future for the nation.

Hosted by talented actor and comedian Alan Committie, the event set the stage for an inspiring evening of celebration and recognition. Distinguished guests, transformation captains and industry leaders came together to recognize the great strides companies and individuals have made in boosting black business and empowering people from all walks of life.

“I am extremely proud to extend my sincere congratulations to all the winners and runners-up of the Top Empowerment Awards 2023,” said Ralf Fletcher, CEO of Top Media. “Their remarkable achievements and unwavering commitment to transformation have had an indelible impact on the South African economy and society. As we celebrate the 22nd Annual Top Empowerment Awards, it is clear that each of them is a catalyst for positive change, propelling us into a more inclusive and prosperous future.”

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“This prestigious event brought together industry leaders, pioneers and visionaries who exemplify the true spirit of empowerment. Their dedication and hard work inspires us all, and I am truly honored to witness the exceptional steps they have taken to move our country forward.”

The top winners of the evening are:

1. Top Empowered Company: Fast Growth Black-Owned SMME of the Year Award

Winner: NTGR Engineering

Representative: Abednico Mkhari, Director, NTGR Engineering

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Runner up: Y-BRAND

2. Top Empowered Company: award for sustainable company of the year

Winner: Sun International

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Representative: Anthony Leeming, Chief Executive, Sun International

Runner-up: Coca Cola Beverages South Africa

3. Top Empowered Company: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace of the Year Award

Winner: Exxaro

Recipient: dr. Nombasa Tsengwa, CEO, Exxaro

4. Top Empowered Company: Digital Transformation of the Year Award

Winner: Liquid Intelligent Technologies

Recipient: Trishen Moodley, Head of Information Technology, Liquid Intelligent Technologies

5. Top Empowered Company: Public Sector of the Year Award

Winner: CEF Group

Recipient: dr. Tshepo Mokoka, Chairman, CEF Group

6. Top Empowered Company: Education and Skills Development of the Year Award

Winner: BP South Africa

Recipient: Taelo Mojapelo, CEO, BP South Africa

7. Top Empowered Company: Enterprise and Supplier Development of the Year Award

Winner: African Bank

Recipient: Edna Montse, Group Executive Transformation & Sustainability, African Bank

Runner Up: Rennie’s BCD Travel

8. Top Empowered Company: Socio-Economic Development of the Year Award

Winner: Sasol

Recipient: Brenda Nkosi-Bakare, Head Governance, Compliance, Planning & Management, Sasol

Runner up: Oceana Group Limited

9. Top Empowered Company: Job Creation Award of the Year Award

Winner: Schneider Electric

Recipient: Kim Naidoo, Head of HR, Schneider Electric

Runner up: exponent

10. Top Empowered Company: Youth Development of the Year Award

Winner: Nestlé

Recipient: Nicole Roos, Managing Director, Nestlé

11. Top Empowered Company: Public Sector Leader of the Year Award

Winner: CEF Group – Zinhle Thupana

Recipient: Zinhle Thupana, Group Executive Corporate Service, CEF Group

12. Award for the best entrepreneur of the year

Winner: TakeNote IT – Mamela Luthuli

Recipient: Mamela Luthuli, President and CEO, TakeNote IT

Runner-up: Mandate Molefi – Nene Molefi

13. Award for the best emancipated young performer of the year

Winner: Dimension Data – Natalie Musonda

Recipient: Natalie Musonda, Head of Diversity and Sustainability, Dimension Data

Runner Up: AfroCentric Health – Dr. Abongile Qamata

14. Best Powerful Business Leader of the Year Award

Winner: Methano Group – Sereme Joel Maphaka

Recipient: Sereme Maphaka, CEO, Methano Group

15. Best Authorized Company of the Year Award

Winner: Traders

Recipient: Sydwell Shikweni, Vice President Transformation, Merchants

The event also witnessed special recognition for Legends of Empowerment: Nedbank, Inseta, Amis, SAB, Bathu Shoes and PWC.

The prestigious event’s highest accolade, the Lifetime Achiever Award, goes to someone who has built a legacy in Africa’s driving transformation. This award was presented to none other than Velaphi Ratshefola, the Managing Director of Coca Cola Beverages South Africa.

Velaphi Ratshefola was appointed Managing Director of Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa in 2016 and led the integration of six different entities to build CCBSA. Velaphi’s exceptional leadership has earned CCBSA multiple global and supplier awards. But it doesn’t end there, his commitment to empowering women is reflected in the Women@CCBSA program, nurturing female talent and promoting representation in leadership. Velaphi’s mission transcends mere profit; he is committed to leaving a lasting positive impact on society through economic, social and environmental contributions.

Transforming South Africa: celebrating the visionaries

The evening was celebrated by esteemed judges, including Noah Debeila, President & CEO of SMME Chamber of Commerce, and Tshepo Ncube, Head of International Coverage at Absa, who played a pivotal role in selecting the winners.

“Together we will continue to push boundaries, break down barriers and shape a future where equality and opportunity thrive. I am confident that the impact of the awards will resonate well beyond the evening and inspire countless others to join the movement towards a more connected, inclusive and prosperous South Africa,” said Fletcher. “Congratulations again to all winners and runners-up. Your passion and dedication to transformation are an example to all of us. Thank you for being the driving force behind change, and I eagerly look forward to witnessing your continued success and impact on our beloved nation.”


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