THIS weekend sees the fourth leg of the Quattro ROAG Series for mountain bikers and trail runners, and it represents a watershed for the popular KZN-based series which offers the biggest prizemoney of any mountain biking series in the country. With competitors needing to compete in six of the nine events to qualify as a series finisher, any rider who has not already taken part in one of the first three events needs to compete in the Husqvarna Classic Mid-Illovo MTB Challenge and Trail Run on Sunday to have any chance of qualifying for the R25 000 first prize. The Compendium Hill 2 Hill which took place over Easter saw two new leaders emerge in the mountain biking series. Leeroy Emslie’s fourth place in the tough 100km marathon from Pietermaritzburg to Shongweni allowed him to take over the series lead in the men’s category. His 202 point from three events put him a meagre 22 points ahead of Stuart Marais, who missed the Hill 2 Hill due to other racing commitments in Gauteng. In the women’s division, young Christie-Leigh Hearder’s consistent finishes has allowed her to open up a sizable gap in the standings. Her 246 points are a 60 points more than second-placed veteran Natalie Bergstrom. In the trail running log, Mark Mackenzie grew his lead and goes into the fourth event with a 57-point gap over David Mercer, despite finding the pace tough at the Hill 2 Hill trail run where he finished 12th. In the women’s trail running, Wendy Mills and Alison Wasserfall have opened up a huge lead over the chasing bunch with Mills in pole position on 260-points with Wasserfall 44 points back. The 60km Husqvarna Classic is one of the most popular one day mountain bike events and the race organiser’s emphasis on superb trails means it is rare for a rider to not drive back from the event with a smile on his or her face. The event was also one of the first mountain bike races in the province to realise that a trail running event was a good addition to the day’s outdoor . . .
AFRICAN MINDS: Bamuturaki Musinguzi an Ugandan journalist and cultural economist (left), Butholezwe Nyathi, Programmes Manager at Amagugu International Heritage Centre (AIHC) in Zimbabwe (centre) and Florence Majachani, from the Nhimbe Trust (Right) are part of the African speakers on the line up for the South African Cultural Observatory’s National Conference on May 24 and 25 at the Turbine Hall in Johannesburg. Picture: SA Cultural Observatory. African insights to feature strongly at creative economy conference APRIL 26, 2017: THE African experience of growing, maintaining and developing a strong cultural and creative economy will be a main focal point at the South African Cultural Observatory’s (SACO) conference this May. The conference coincides with Africa Day celebrations on May 25. “There is no doubt creativity and human ingenuity is going to drive the fourth industrial revolution. As a young continent – 65% of the population of Africa is under 35 – there is ample opportunity to train and develop the youth to maximize their contribution to local economies. “The creative and cultural industries offer a viable career path in the face of automation; it is also an integral part of the future we want to imagine is possible on the African continent,” said Njabulo Sithebe, SACO Deputy Director of Research. The conference, which takes place at the Turbine Hall in Johannesburg on May 24 and 25, seeks to showcase African thinking, insights, best practices and case studies to build a solid understanding of how the broader African creative economy is developing. “We have a varied mix of respected African academics, consultants and practitioners who are primed to share their experiences at the conference,” he added. Topping the list is Florence Majachani, from the Nhimbe Trust and an Independent Research Consultant from Zimbabwe. Majachani, is a specialist in cultural governance, advocacy, cultural rights, and citizenship and creative industries. She has over ten . . .
PIETERMARITZBURG, KZN, 26 APRIL 2017 – Sunday, 23 April 2017, saw Jeep Team OCR Athletes, Thomas van Tonder, Carina Marx, and Jay Jay Deysel take on Race #3 of the Toyota Warrior Series, powered by Reebok, at Van Gaalen Cheese Farm in the North West. Over the weekend of the 22 and 23 April, South Africa’s largest obstacle course race series attracted almost 2000 competitors eager to face the challenge of the world-class Toyota Warrior obstacle courses have become famous for. For Jeep Team’s athletes, the racing started with the Black Ops Elite race, the toughest of them all, featuring some 30 obstacles over a 17km trail, designed to challenge endurance, strength and agility. 2016’s SA OCR Men’s Champion, Thomas “BeastMode” van Tonder, claimed his 11th Warrior win in a super-fast time of 01:26:29. Second place went to Greg Avierinos in 01:27:12, and rounding off the podium was Louis Smit, who finished in 01:29:03. Fellow Jeep Team athlete, Jay Jay Deysel, crossed the line in 8th place in a time of 01:41:42. Says van Tonder, “I am so blessed to be taking home my 11th Warrior Race win. Well done to everyone as this was one tough race.” Van Tonder‘s winning performance earned him R10 000 prize money and a Warrior-branded Toyota RAV4 to drive around until the next warrior race. Jeep Team OCR athlete and 2016 SA OCR top 3 female champion, Carina Marx, finished 3rd overall in the Women’s Black Ops Elite race in 2:23:22. Sabrina Daolio took the win in 1:53:15, with Trish Bahlmann in second place in 1:59:03. The Jeep Team SA teammates then took on the Reebok Team Sprint race - a short, high-intensive course spanning 400m with 10 obstacles. Marx, Van Tonder and Deysel finished in second place behind race-winners Team Nevarest. Third place in the sprint race went to the team from #BeSnapped. Results – Black Ops Elite Men 1. Thomas van Tonder 01:26:29 2. Greg Avierinos 01:27:12 3. Louis Smit 01:29:03 Women 1. Sabrina Daolio 01:53:15 2. Trish . . .
Cape Town, 26 April 2017: Oudtshoorn, the Klein Karoo town known for (among other things), ostrich riding and the Cango Caves, is set to enjoy a new-look hotel when the well-known Protea Hotel by Marriott® Oudtshoorn Riempie Estate undergoes refurbishment. The new owners, who acquired the property in October last year, felt that it was time for the property, with its country feel, to be revitalised. According to the owner, Barend Smit, “This is a big project, since the entire property will be refurbished. In addition to a redesigned front façade, the work involves the renovation of all the rooms, and each will have a brand-new bathroom, new flooring and fresh furnishings. “While we have decided to refresh the property, we are conscious of the need to retain the features that give this hotel its charm, so the refurbishment takes this into account,” Smit explains. To minimise the impact of the building on guests, the hotel will remain open and the work will be carried out between 9am and 4pm during weekdays only. The plan is for the project to be carried out in phases, and certain sections of the property will be closed during particular phases of the work. Work commences on Monday, 24 April. “We have no doubt that the hotel will be even more attractive to tourists and business travellers alike, and that we will continue to enhance the appeal of the region,” concludes Smit. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
Founded in 2001, Jeep Team South Africa is the most consistent, longest-running Sports, Wellness and Lifestyle Team in South Africa. With around 300 athletes moving through the team over the past 16 years, Jeep Team SA provides a highly educational, support and motivational platform for athletes to grow, develop and mature into national and International stars. International and National paddling star and coach, Barry Lewin, is the longest-standing member of the team, and is an important compass to all new athletes to the team. With Jeep Team at the helm, international sports events have presented significant opportunities for rising South African athletes to compete on a global stage. These opportunities have proven that local athletes are able to hold their own in the international sporting arena. However, without structures such as Jeep team SA, this newfound success is often curtailed by a lack of effective guidance and management. Lewin, who joined the team in 2004, now has several local and international titles to his name. Some of his more notable achievements include winning the Liffey Descent in Ireland on his first attempt in 2007, as well as breaking the 25-year-old K1 record a year later at Australia’s Avon Descent. Says Lewin, “In 2004, I was a student at Varsity College eager to take my sport to the next level. I wanted to race against the best in the world, and in as many places as the sport would take me. With the support of Jeep Team South Africa, I got opportunities to race, firstly, around South Africa, and, in time, around the world, testing myself against some of the best paddlers on the planet. My first breakthrough came in 2005, winning the grading race in Cape Town as the first person to break an hour on the course in a new record time. I also finished 3rd at the Fish River Canoe Marathon in the same year.” Since joining the team some 13 years ago, Lewin has developed a profound understanding of Jeep Team’s culture, and plays an active . . .
Woolworths Holdings Limited (WHL) is pleased to announce the 10th anniversary of its Good Business Journey (GBJ), a flagship South African sustainability programme that was launched in 2007 by Simon Susman, now Chairman of WHL, as a commitment by Woolworths to make a difference to people, communities and the environment. The GBJ was a first of its kind in South African retail whereby sustainability became a strategic platform for the business with specific public targets. Over the last ten years the GBJ has set new standards across its eight focus areas of transformation, social development, health and wellness, ethical sourcing, sustainable farming, waste, water and energy. Last year, the company updated its GBJ goals through to 2020 including embedding the programme into the Group’s Australian businesses which now account for over forty per cent of turnover. Ian Moir, Chief Executive of WHL said, “When we launched the GBJ in 2007 we didn’t really know exactly where it would lead, but we did know it was the right thing to do and that it would be a journey. It was the type of innovative thinking that has been important to Woolworths since it was founded 85 years ago, and it was a way for us to bring together all the different social and environmental initiatives we were already busy with, under one flagship programme. These are initiatives that matter most to us and everyone our business touches, and the GBJ was our plan to make an even bigger difference.” “We’ve learned a lot along the way and we continue to learn from both our successes and mistakes. The issues behind the GBJ have, if anything, become even more important than they were ten years ago. Our goal now is to be the most sustainable retailer in the southern hemisphere and we have built a strong business case around sustainability.” Justin Smith, Head of Sustainability at Woolworths said: “This is an important celebration which allows us to remind ourselves that business is no longer about profit . . .
Membership of South Africa's Wireless Application Service Providers' Association (WASPA) is recommended, and often compulsory, for any firm wanting to provide mobile content services to the country's 35 million prepaid and contract cellular users. Vodacom, MTN, Cell C and Telkom Mobile have all mandated that membership of a representative industry body with an enforceable Code of Conduct is required for wireless application service providers (WASPs). This is specifically for WASPs intending to offer aggregation services via direct network connections. "While WASPA membership is recommended for content providers, and compulsory for all aggregators, members understand that it is good for the sustainability of our industry to become a member of WASPA, as it ensures that WASP activity is monitored and regulated to address any potential non-compliant behaviour," said Ilonka Badenhorst, WASPA General Manager. WASPA outlines benefits of membership below: WASPA is a proactive body representing the interests of its members and works for the common good of the industry as a whole. WASPA developed a Code of conduct for its members, and also enforces this code to ensure business is conducted in an ethical manner, maximising consumer confidence in WASP services. Members are able to contribute to the evolution of the Code and ensure their business needs are considered. WASPA runs a consumer complaints desk, ensuring that all users of WASP services have a single point where they can raise concerns and resolve complaints. Complaints are channelled to the relevant WASP, and WASPA provides feedback to the consumer during the resolution process. WASPA provides a media monitoring service, ensuring compliance of all WASP services to the WASPA code. WASPA maintains excellent relationships with the relevant authorities ensuring that the implementation of the many regulatory requirements, on behalf of its members, is dealt with as quickly and efficiently as is feasible. WASPA . . .
Carrick Wealth, together with Signature of Hope Trust and Chris Bertish, launched their #StandUp campaign a few months ago. With the campaign running until the end of April, the organisers are urging all South Africans to get involved. The main purpose of the campaign is to mobilise South Africans to stand up and be counted – and in so doing assist in changing the lives of millions of children across Africa by donating funds towards the three beneficiaries of Chris Bertish’s Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) expedition. To date, over R500 000 had already been raised via the SMS line and through direct donations, while the SUP Crossing project as a whole raised more than five million rand. Don’t miss your chance to be part of the campaign by contributing to assist at-risk kids across Africa! Chris Bertish made history in March 2017 by completing the first ever solo, unsupported transatlantic SUP Crossing. Starting off from Morocco on December 6, 2016, he traversed 4,050nm/7,500km, paddling 2 million strokes across the Atlantic Ocean for 93 days. The SUP Crossing has been hailed one of the biggest sporting feats and has defied all expectations; however, Bertish’s quest was not only limited to crossing the Atlantic. His quest also aimed to create a sustainable legacy by raising funds for three chosen charities, namely the Signature of Hope Trust, Operation Smile SA and The Lunchbox Fund. With a target of raising over 20 million rand, the goal is to make the entire project a completely self-sustainable initiative by means of an annuity fund, specifically set up and managed by the Carrick Wealth Investment Committee, to establish recurring income for the beneficiaries. Working in conjunction with the beneficiaries, funds will be released on a regular basis, balancing operational requirements with capital protection. The #StandUp campaign was created not only to assist Chris in reaching his goal, but to encourage the public to stand up and show support for these worthy . . .
On Thursday, 11 May, BON Hotel Midrand will be hosting an Event Showcase - creating beautiful and functional spaces to highlight the ways in which the venues at the hotel can be used. Invited guests and the public can pop by between 11h00 and 14h00 and indulge in the latest culinary eats and be inspired by on-trend, interesting and creative concepts for weddings, events, special occasions, conferences and launches. Celebrity Chef Citrum Khumalo, from Asidle Culinary Kitchen and Chef Lucy at BON Hotel Midrand will be whipping up the latest in culinary eats – from high tea delicacies, healthy and innovative conferencing catering, canape’s and cocktails, as you wander about the hotel, meet our suppliers and experience all the different pockets of creativity and inspiration. When : OPEN DAY, Thursday, 11 May from 11h00 to 14h00 Where : BON Hotel Midrand, 546, 16th road, Constantia Park, Halfway House (minutes from the Gautrain) Contact : email@example.com Meet our suppliers: Adverb, Asidle Culinary Kitchen, Auto Bavaria, Bold Pearl, Connecta-floor, Gauteng Tourism, JC Functions, Lounge Around, Massive Records, Showbiz Productions, The Tablecloth Hiring Company, Ulunga Bar CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
Do you know that improved customer interaction is one of the main trends and predictions for financial institutions for 2017? By removing friction from the customer journey, financial institutions can create the optimal customer journey. Attend the Digital Customer Engagement Conference on 7 & 8 June 2017 at the Indaba Hotel, Johannesburg to find out more how banks, insurance companies and other players in the financial services industry can learn to create the optimal customer journey, making each step and touch point in the buying cycle stream-lined, efficient and personalised. Some of the themes to be addressed in the programme include digital marketing strategies to improve customer engagement, social media, e-metrics, loyalty and digital sales enablement. The event showcases a top speaker panel, all experts in the marketing and financial services arenas. Some of the companies represented include Experian, ClickMaven, P:Cubed, Compuscan, Digital Solutions Group, SAP Africa, EOH Digital, inQuba, Karabina, NXT and more. View brochure for more at: http://www.tci-sa.co.za/digital-customer-engagement-conference-download-page/ Targeting financial professionals dealing with customer engagement, the programme will highlight challenges, opportunities and the latest developments regarding digital channels and customer relationships. Conference Project Manager, Ryno van Ellewee, said banks and other financial institutions must engage customers at every stage of their purchase journey. By using digital channels, it will make the customer journey for financial institutions a reality, and improve customer on-boarding, cross-selling and retention. A highlight of the programme will include a panel discussion on how the use of digital channels will influence the customer journey in the foreseeable future. Van Ellewee said the event is aimed at professionals from the financial sector dealing with CRM, customer value management, customer insights & analytics, . . .