Carrying the name of the Norwegian Thesen family, who settled in the town of Knysna and established a timber processing plant on the island, much has changed since those early days with Thesen Islands having been redeveloped into one of the country’s most sought-after residential marinas. According to Schalk van der Merwe, Broker/Owner of RE/MAX Coastal, whose office services Knysna and the surrounding areas, much of the allure of Thesen Islands is its ideal positioning within the heart of one of Southern Africa’s richest ecological estuaries. “The tranquil surroundings of being on the water’s edge and the beautiful indigenous forests in the region have made it a popular choice for property buyers who are looking for an exclusive home among scenic surroundings,” says Van der Merwe. One of the region’s major tourist attractions, the Knysna River Estuary on which Thesen Islands is situated, is a highly sensitive eco-system. “Due to the fact that the eco-system was so delicate, the residential development of Thesen Islands required a great deal of planning which covered ecological, architectural, engineering, aesthetic, social and cultural guidelines. As a result, it took around eight years of meticulous preparation and research before the project could be started. Approval to begin the development was granted in 1998, however was subject to over a hundred stringent conditions,” adds Van der Merwe. He notes that while the strict guidelines may have delayed the development of Thesen Islands, it is these specifications, along with the unique lifestyle on offer that has made the development an award-winning residential marina attracting a great number of property investors, both locally and internationally. RE/MAX Coastal sales associates, Corlia Goris and Sue Abernethy who specialise in property sales on Thesen Islands, say that the marina’s Blue Flag status has also added to its popularity among buyers. “The exclusivity and security measures on Thesen . . .
Labchem (Pty) Ltd has become the latest member of the Chemical & Allied Industries’ Association (CAIA) to sign the Responsible Care (RC) Public Commitment, thereby committing the company to implementing its guiding principles. Labchem (Pty) Ltd, which operates from Johannesburg, was established in 1983 with the objective of becoming a leading laboratory supplier in South Africa. Offering extensive ranges of standard and specialised chemicals, laboratory glassware, general consumables and basic laboratory instrumentation, the company has established strong ties with renowned international and local chemical manufacturers. “In 2005, Labchem obtained ISO9001:2008 certification and succeeded in maintaining this ever since. In 2012, we moved into our new premises with extended warehousing to better accommodate our growing company and customer demands. We have built a new, modern chemical store to enable us to store hazardous chemicals safely. With on-going determination to improve operations in a holistic manner, Labchem’s recent, voluntary membership of CAIA and the signing of the Responsible Care Public Commitment will help guide the company in current and future aspects of chemical safety and product stewardship. It is our company’s expectation that the implementation of the Responsible Care principles will be of benefit to the company employees, customers and the environment in which we operate.” said CEO Derek Stott. “By signing the RC public commitment, Labchem (Pty) Ltd pledges to conduct all its operations in a safe and environmentally sustainable manner and to incorporate the Responsible Care ethics and requirements into its business strategy, management system and daily operations," says Louise Lindeque, Responsible Care Manager at CAIA. One hundred and fifty nine companies are signatories to the RC initiative in South Africa, which shows that the initiative is more than a set of principles and declarations. Through the sharing of information . . .
The panel of judges, who will be adjudicating the 2014 Arts & Culture Trust ImpACT Awards for Young Professionals, has been announced. A group of well-known and respected professionals working across a variety of contexts will convene to judge this year’s entries for the ImpACT Awards. They are: theatre personality Caroline Smart, visual artist David Koloane, arts education and heritage activist Nadia Virasamy, 2013 Standard Bank Young Artist for Theatre Prince Lamla, culture and craft mentor Eugenie Drakes and jazz music legend Herbie Tsoaeli. Public nominations for the ImpACT Awards for Young Professionals, sponsored by the Distell Foundation, are currently open till the 8th of August in the following four categories: Visual Art, Theatre, Music & Singing and Design. These awards are presented annually to honour young artists who have reached a professional standing in their discipline, and are within the first five years of their professional careers. “Every year The Arts and Culture Trust honours four ImpACT Awards to young professionals on their achievements in the first five years of their careers. The judges look for impressive progress and excellence in both the individual and the impact that they have made in their communities. ACT is committed to supporting their development path and ultimate success” explains Caroline Smart. Smart, who is the convener of the panel and an ACT Trustee, is a multi-award winning and well-known Durban theatre personality who has been involved in the professional performing arts world for over 45 years. She wears many "hats": trained actress, voice production coach (speech), director and scriptwriter as well as television presenter/producer. She is an experienced radio drama actress and director. Her website, artSMart, is dedicated to promoting the arts in Durban and further afield in KZN. She is also a judge for The Mercury Durban Theatre Awards and KZN DanceLink. She is closely involved in the renovation . . .
CAPE TOWN’S WOMEN ARE WALKING…from St George’s Cathedral to Artscape to celebrate Women’s Day, unify the Mother City, and mark the achievements of women. Everyone is invited to participate in this event which will launch the Women’s Day activities of the Artscape Women’s Humanity Arts Festival. The Women’s Humanity Walk is coordinated by WOMAN ZONE, Artscape and the South African Faith and Family Institute (SAFFI) and is a walk of unity, solidarity and celebration. The walkers will be addressed and blessed by women faith leaders at St George’s Cathedral before proceeding to Artscape. This is an opportunity to get to know and share with others from the diverse cultures of our city. Welcoming the walkers at the Artscape Theatre Centre for the start of the day’s Festival programme will be Thandi Swartbooi‘s drumming group Women Unite and the Amy Biehl Foundation Marimbas. If your limited ability prevents you from participating in the whole walk, you are invited to meet the arriving walkers on the Artscape Piazza and complete the walk with the group. WOMAN ZONE is a movement designed to bring together all women from the Mother City's cultural kaleidoscope. To get to know one another better, to share stories and experiences, work together, learn from each other - and above all to highlight and promote their past, present and future achievements, not their victimhood. Cape Town’s women are for unity and for integration. THE ARTSCAPE WOMEN’S HUMANITY ARTS FESTIVAL has for the past seven years included the disabled and disenfranchised communities, women and men from all walks of life. It is Artscape’s response to highlight the lack of “humanity” which marginalized groups face on a daily basis in South Africa, with particular emphasis on women and the disabled. From 6 to 9 August a wide range of events, stage productions, workshops, book launches and exhibits take place in the theatre centre and offer something for everyone. Full programme: . . .
Online booking and practice management system connects searchers and medical professionals in real time One man’s frustrated attempts to locate and book a medical doctor while travelling have resulted in an online solution designed to bring relief to thousands of others experiencing similar difficulties in setting up appointments with new or current medical practitioners. When Cape Town-based business improvement specialist Handré Dreyer shared his frustrations with colleagues, he realized just how prevalent the problem of booking a doctor online really was. This prompted him to devise a way of easily and securely connecting doctors and patients online. After months of prototyping an appointment scheduling and practice management system, and collaboration with both medical and IT industry experts, DocDiary has now entered beta launch. It has been well received amongst early adopters who realize the benefits this system will bring to practitioners and patients. Streamlining the process of linking patients with practitioners is at the heart of DocDiary. It is an online booking and practice marketing and management system that enables real-time appointment scheduling and high Internet visibility for doctors registered on the user-friendly website, www.docdiary.co.za. DocDiary’s visibility in search engines such as Google means medical professionals are instantly accessible by patients looking to find the most suitable – and available –healthcare provider to see to their needs. Patients can find general practitioners or specialists listed by geographic area, field of specialisation and even gender. They can then compare doctors’ credentials and patient reviews and click to see available time slots in the appointment schedule of their shortlisted doctors. Tapping into the connective power of the Internet and fulfilling a growing need of an increasingly web-savvy South African population, DocDiary is set to revolutionise the way patients choose and . . .
Launched two years ago, the Africa Cloud eXchange (ACX) from Teraco Data Centre Environments now provides access to 54 African countries via local and global carriers. ACX aims to provide a secure data centre environment for cloud providers to colocate and onward distribute their service offerings to the rest of Africa. Through Africa’s largest internet exchange, NAPAfrica, global partners have access to key content from local and international content providers. With the deployment of a single cable within the data centre they can now distribute throughout Africa at low latency and high availability. Cloud services providers can also effectively share and sell cloud services to an extensive client base from a single distribution point within the data centre facility. “The tremendous growth that Teraco Data Centre Environments has experienced in the last year, makes it a true telecommunications hub and a low risk entry point into Africa,” says Lex van Wyk, CEO of Teraco Data Centre Environments. According to industry analyst reports, the ICT landscape in Africa is growing and there are a myriad of business opportunities for IT services. Key drivers for this growth includes major infrastructure projects, growth in financial services and an increase in governments’ spend on for example transport, infrastructure and citizen centric services. South Africa has also recently been ranked as a leading emerging economy on the African continent with the 15th largest telco market globally and the 2nd fastest growing cloud market in EMEA. “By nature, cloud providers are continuously exploring new markets for IT services and view an increase of their overall performance as a competitive advantage. For these companies it makes business sense to colocate at Teraco. We have a growing footprint, high network density and an excellent track record,” says Van Wyk. The philosophy of ACX is to enable colocation clients to share and interconnect with other cloud providers . . .
The NMMU Madibaz are determined to bounce back after losing out to Varsity Football minnows the University of Johannesburg in their first away game of the tournament on Monday night. According to Madibaz head coach Graeme Harrison, his team put up a valiant defence before going down 3-0 in front of a large and vocal UJ crowd. "In the first half we were quite competitive," said Harrison. "UJ actually had the major share of the possession but we held out." After going into half-time without any points on the board, a resurgent UJ dominated in the second half. "They created chances and eventually scored and we just couldn't come back from that. We had an opportunity or two but unfortunately couldn't convert them." Bolstered by the home support, the Gauteng-based outfit broke through the Madibaz defences to push through two more goals. "They were simply the better team on the day," said Harrison, adding that the crowd had played a vital role in spurring UJ on. "They really got behind their players – it was like having a 12th man on the field." The Madibaz on the other hand were whittled down to nine men in the closing minutes after two of their players sustained injuries. Striker Cloudius Sagandira had to be stretchered off with a concussion, while substitute Cornelius Matuoane tore ligaments in his knee. "That was after I'd already made my three permitted changes, so for the last six or seven minutes we had to play with nine men." Harrison said Sagandira and Matuoane would undergo further testing this week to determine the extent of the injuries. But, said the coach, it was certainly not all doom and gloom and that his relatively young squad were determined to improve throughout the nine-week tournament. "It's only the second game. If you look at the history of the competition, last year's champions, Tuks, lost their first two games and managed to make it to the semi-finals and then go on to win the competition. "We just need . . .
Maths pupils from grade one to matric now have access to over 950 free maths lessons presented in their mother tongue. This is thanks to a group of 20 passionate young South African university students, who invested hundreds of hours of their time to translate over 950 Khan Academy online video lessons from English into isiXhosa. The entire school maths syllabus is now available on the internet in isiXhosa. Pupils can either do the lessons individually, or they can be used in a classroom setting in which the teachers can monitor the progress of each pupil. All the lessons and teachers modules are available for free. They can be played on any device with a web browser. While the Khan courses are available in over 30 languages, it is the first time the lessons have been translated into an indigenous South African language. A Cape-based organisation, Numeric, has matched the South African school syllabus with Khan Academy lessons. This ground-breaking translation is the brainchild of two graduates from the University of Cape Town, Adrian Cox and Pratik Pokharel, who was raised in East London. Adrian Cox is from Durban. The two formed a non-profit organisation called ClickMaths in 2012 in their undergraduate year with the belief that the best way to improve South Africa’s struggling mathematics education system is through the use of freely-available, open-source technology. The two successfully tested the concept and then with the help of private backers took the project a step further with the help of a group of 20 isiXhosa-speaking students studying high-level mathematics. The students translated the online Khan video lessons from English so that primary and secondary learners can learn mathematics in their home language. Cox and Pokharel believe that the future of education involves a system where teachers spend less time on administrative tasks, such as preparing lessons and marking, and more time on the truly important aspects . . .
Win a Samsung GALAXY Experience with Beyoncé and Jay Z Samsung offers you the opportunity to RUN the GALAXY JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – July 29, 2014 – Do you see yourself in the City of Lights? With Samsung Electronics South Africa consumers stand a chance to win the ultimate GALAXY experience – to watch Beyoncé and Jay Z live in Paris, France, as part of the dynamic duo’s ‘On The RUN’ tour. The Samsung ‘GALAXY On The Run’ campaign will see five lucky winners enjoy an all-expenses paid trip to Paris. “Samsung is known for its partnerships with the biggest names in the music industry and it gives us great pleasure to be able to offer our customers this “money can’t buy” experience. We continually strive to shape initiatives that are creative, expressive and which enrich consumers’ lives, the ‘GALAXY On The Run’ promotion is the perfect example,” said Craige Fleischer, Director of Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics SA. The power couple, Jay Z and Beyoncé introduced their first joint tour by releasing a short film, similar to a movie trailer, with a bevy of explosions, high-speed chases, an all-star cast and a highly volatile romance at the center of it all. With more than 300 million records sold worldwide, Queen Bey and Hov, as they are popularly known, captivated the imagination of their fans with this teaser for their ‘ON the RUN’ tour. Samsung offers participants a platform to run the GALAXY, by seeing these Grammy award artists on one stage. The lucky winners will receive an all-inclusive trip, including travel, 5* Star accommodation in Paris, exclusive front row seating and backstage passes at the concert, incredible goodie bags and stylish chauffeur service around the city. How to enter In order to stand a chance to win, consumers should purchase either a Samsung GALAXY Trend Plus or GALAXY Fame Lite, retailing at R1999 and R999 respectively, at participating retailers before 29th August and SMS OTR, followed by their full name, . . .
While the past decade has been known for its technology-evolution and increased pace of business, it has not quite achieved its focus and success in terms of customer centricity. Quinton Pienaar, CEO of Agilitude, Africa’s first Salesforce.com reseller, says that this is not entirely the issue of focus but also the ever-changing technology landscape “Today’s technology allows customer facing teams to create and deploy customer journeys based on rich customer insights. This results in a one to one customer connection and creates closer, long lasting relationships with customers.” Pienaar says that according to a Customer 2020 report, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator: “This means that businesses have to start now to embed a customer centric methodology into its overall approach if they want to succeed.” Cloud, Mobile Big-data and most recently the Internet of Things (IoT) has dramatically impacted both technology and customer service with its rapid evolution. The continued growth and adoption of these trends is significantly changing the way we interact and this means is that customers will continue to evolve and mature, having many more avenues to find the service they want.” While he says this is a potential threat, it is also a very big opportunity. “The time is now for customers to pursue a customer-centric culture. By creating value out of the data and proactively defining the desired needs of the customer, a business is more likely to succeed.” Agilitude has key partnerships with leading customer-centric brands such as Salesforce.com, Zuora and Informatica. Pienaar says that his team helps customers find new ways to interact with clients: “We know that customer experience is a major driver in buying decisions and focus entirely on helping customers better understand their journey and as a result, their needs.” Renowned Author, Wally Lamb, says that ‘the seeker embarks on a journey to find what he . . .