Nominate your Businesswoman of the Year

There are just two weeks left to put your thinking caps on and consider worthy nominees for the highly prestigious Businesswoman of the Year Award, which annually recognises the country’s top businesswomen achievers, motivators and role models who are helping to build the nation and ensure that women take their rightful place in the economy.

If she is building a new workforce, contributing meaningfully to the GDP and significantly building South Africa’s economy she must be nominated!

Now in its 34th year, the Businesswoman of the Year Award features two categories – corporate and entrepreneur – and is one of the most prized awards in the South African annual business calendar.

Entries close on May 6 and the two winners will be announced at a gala dinner in Johannesburg on August 22.

 Initiated in 1980, the award has become an important fixture and a highly visible means of recognizing the growing contribution that women are making to advancing both corporate and entrepreneur organisations. Indicating the award night’s stature, last year’s keynote speaker was none other than President Jacob Zuma.

Well-known previous winners of the award who have had highly impactful careers include: Maria Ramos, Absa’s CEO; Jane Raphaely, publisher extraordinary; the late Maria Maponya of the Maponya Group; Futhi Mtoba, chairperson of accounting firm Deloittes; and Nicky Newton-King, CEO of the JSE Ltd.

“If you work with or know a woman who is an inspiring role model and is making a big difference in an organisation, put her name forward to be considered by our judges,” said Kunyalala Maphisa, president of the Businesswomen’s Association of South Africa, which stages the annual award event.

“This is a great opportunity to recognize the contribution that women are making in the business arena. We are hoping for a really strong range of entries this year from various industry sectors and from across the country.”

All nominees must be South African residents or citizens with their business interests in South Africa. In the corporate sector, nominees need to control an annual budget of at least R75 million, while in the entrepreneur sector, the budget must be at least R35 million with the nominee owning at least 25% of the business. In both categories, the nominee needs to have been with their organisation for at least three years.

Last year’s corporate sector winner was Dawn Rowlands, CEO of Aegis Media, while the entrepreneur sector winner was Margaret Hirsch, Chief Operating Executive at Hirschs.

Importantly, funds raised through the gala dinner on August 22 will go towards the BWA’s bursary fund that has distributed more than R500, 000 towards deserving recipients ‘post graduate studies in recent years. Individuals or organisations wanting to make a contribution to the BWA’s bursary fund can also make donations to this worthwhile and valuable cause, the proceeds of which are spread amongst the BWA’s eleven regions.

In addition to the Businesswoman of the Year Awards, the BWA also holds annual Regional Business Achiever Awards to recognise the achievement of women at a local and regional level. These are totally separate awards.

·         Entries for this year’s Businesswoman of the Year Award close on May 6. Further information can be accessed frominfo@bwasa.co.za or by calling 011 486 3301

Statement issued by The Businesswomen’s Association of South Africa

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