Our Board


G Ackerman (Co-Chairman CGCSA)

Chairman, Pick n Pay Stores Ltd

Gareth Ackerman is the chairman of South African retail chain Pick n Pay Stores. As a family-controlled listed company founded by Raymond Ackerman in 1967, it is one of the region’s largest retailers in eight countries and employs more than 60,000 people. Mr Ackerman is a board member of the controlling company board Pick n Pay Holdings Limited, and chairs the family office and investment committee.

He is a member of the board of the Consumer Goods Forum and it’s vice co-chair for 2013-2015 and incoming Co-Chair 2015-2017. He is the African Chair of WPO and a global board member He is also chairman and co-founder of Pleiad Capital, which engages in private equity investment, corporate finance and strategic consulting.
He is a passionate contributor to the issue of global food security and sustainable development and is widely involved in philanthropy.
Mr Ackerman hold a bachelor of social science from the University of Cape Town and a CMS from the University of Oxford.
He is an associate fellow at Green Templeton College, Oxford, and lectures at a number of global universities.


G Mangozhe

Chief Executive Officer, CGCSA

Gwarega joined CGCSA in January 2012 from Internatio Mueller Chemicals Distribution (IMCD) South Africa (a subsidiary of the Rotterdam based IMCD Group), where he served as Financial Director. He has a Bachelor of Business Science (Finance Honours) degree from the University of Cape Town and is a qualified Chartered Accountant. He then went on to complete his MBA as well as an Executive Development Programme at the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS).

Prior to joining IMCD South Africa, Gwarega held senior management positions in Sales, Operations and Finance at Avis Fleet Services South Africa, a division of the Barloworld Group. He also has extensive knowledge of the public sector as he has consulted with several government entities in the areas of compliance, strategy and organisational re-engineering.



Chairman, Smollan Holdings

Doug matriculated in 1963 at King Edward School in Johannesburg. He attended the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg and qualified with a Bachelor of Commerce and achieved his Masters in Business Leadership from the University of South Africa 1975. In 1968 upon attaining his Masters degree his father, Fred Smollan who founded the Group in 1931, handed Doug the Smollan Group and has since then developed it over 42 years. Smollan Group roughly employs 56 000 people and has a presence in 5 continents.

Doug served as President of Young Presidents Organisation Worldwide in 94/95, the second Non- American in 50 years at that time.
He is passionate about South Africa, its people and its development. He was Chairman of Business Against Crime (“BAC’), Gauteng in 1997. In 2000, he joined BAC’s National Board. Doug chairs up the Consumer Goods Council of South Africa Anti-Crime initiative since 2000. Doug is a Pioneer of the Nelson Mandela: “The Champion Within” Programme with Life College to develop 1 million champions by 2020.

He also has an interest in Stellenbosch Vineyards, which is a wine producer and one of the top five exporters, taking its portfolio of award-winning wines to 39 countries around the globe. He also has varied wild life and conservation investments throughout South Africa, namely Inyati, Birds of Eden, Jukani and Monkeyland.

Doug and Carolyn have been married for 44 years. They are blessed with 3 sons, David, Paul and Michael, their spouses and 3 grandsons. Doug lives by the mottos “Life’s for real, it ain’t no rehearsal” and “If you are green you grow, if you are ripe you rot”.


G Kirk

CEO Exclusive Books

Grattan Joined Tiger Brands in July 2013, following a successful stint as JD Group Chief Executive Officer since June 2008. He has 13 year’s experience in the auditing and retail industry. He was appointed CEO of Connection Group Holdings Ltd in 2003. After JD Group acquired Connection Group Holdings Limited in 2005, Grattan served as Chief Executive of the Cash Division, encompassing HI-Fi Corporation and Incredible Connection as well as assuming responsibility of ABRA, the Group’s International brand in Poland. In May 2007, he was appointed Chief Operating Officer of the Traditional and Cash Retail divisions.


Bruno Olierhoek

Nestlé South Africa, Managing Director and Chairman for the East and Southern Africa Region (ESAR)

Bruno Olierhoek joined Nestlé South Africa as the Managing Director and Chairman for the East and Southern Africa Region (ESAR) in August 2018, a region comprising of 23 countries.

Prior to assuming his current position, Bruno was the CEO of Nestlé Pakistan, a position he held from July 2015 until the appointment to his current position. In Pakistan, he was also President of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce & Industry, representing 191 international companies from 35 countries, covering 14 sectors of the economy with assets of $83 billion.

Bruno has worked as an international executive within Nestlé for more than 20 years serving in different and diverse markets such as Asia, Europe and Africa. He joined the company in Indonesia in 1995 as a management trainee.

He has diverse cross-functional experience and has successfully led a business turnaround, established new startups and engaged in global business strategy developments.

Bruno’s achievements include leading the Nestlé Pakistan business to cross the milestone of delivering annual sales of over CHF 1 Billion in 2016. He aggressively drove the digital transformation of the market, to leave Nestlé Pakistan achieving more online sales than any other FMCG company in Pakistan today.

Throughout his career, Bruno has championed Creating Shared Value (CSV) initiatives to strengthen the business and build trust. During his time in CWAR, he focused on improving the safety and health standards in Nestlé’s Central African operations, which led to Nestlé becoming the founding member of ‘Safe Way, Right Way,’ which promotes road safety. He also spearheaded a ‘Malaria Eradication Campaign’ which won the Global Nestlé, ‘Health by Choice’ award.

Bruno is a graduate of the European Business Programme (BBA, Hogeschool Rotterdam and Ecole Supérieure de Bordeaux). He is a dual Dutch and French national. He is married with three children.


Johann Vorster

Chief Executive Officer at Clover SA

Johann is a Chartered Accountant with an MBA, which qualifications served him well during his career.  He was instrumental and a founder member of a previous listing on the JSE which gave him the idea of assisting companies with high debt levels to transform and attract new capital.


After graduating with a BComm from RAU in 1985, Johann spent 4 years with Ernst & Young as Senior Manager while completing his honours through Unisa in 1986 and his CA in 1987.  He spent the next three years with SARS as Assistant Director of Operational Research.  He completed his MBA through Wits before joining East Rand Plastics (Pty) in 1992.  After several acquisitions, the East Rand Group of Companies was created. Which finally became Astrapak.


As Financial Director of Astrapak he was responsible for the company’s listing on the JSE in 1997.  He became joint MD of the Film Division of Astrapak before accepting an offer as Chief Financial Officer from the Clover Group in October 2000.


In the initial years after having been appointed as CFO of Clover, he showed utmost determination to restructure the Balance Sheet and introduce strict financial policies.  As Chief Executive, he faced a huge challenge to convert Clover the co-op to a commercial orientated entity.  The co-op members opposed every proposal by Johann due to the “loss of control” issues.  However, the members approved the 19th restructuring proposal by Johann and the company was transformed.  The second wave was equally challenging as the advisors were of the opinion that to successfully list a dairy dominant company on the JSE was going to be near “impossible” Johann pushed ahead, and Clover was very successfully listed on the JSE 7 years ago.

After achieving what seemed to be impossible, Johann had to change a 109-year-old organisation into a profit making commercial company.  Not only was the culture against him, the entire staff opposed the change and mindsets needed to be changed, and Johann had to persevere with introducing his entrepreneurial skills in to the organisation, which was a mammoth task – i.e. converting the culture from managing costs to generate profits by investing behind profitable brands and products, and using technology to support the business.

For all his efforts, Johann won the EY World Entrepreneur Award for Southern Africa 2015 for the Master Category and represented South Africa at the EY World Entrepreneur Award in Monte Carlo in June 2016.

Johann has recently introduced another restructuring of the Clover Group in order to make it a truly FMCG Business away from commodities and the cyclicality that it brings. An accolade of the most Reputable Company in South Africa three years in a row says a lot about the integrity Johann demands from the business.


Tony Da Fonseca

Managing Director of OBC

Tony started his working life at a locally-owned advertising agency. He rose from humble beginnings to managing director within a few short years and was instrumental in negotiating a merger with global communication giant DDB. This brought with it access to global brands and before long, Tony managed to steer DDB SA into the coveted Top 20 bracket of South African agencies.

In 2008, Tony was offered the role of managing director by one of the agency’s clients, OBC Chicken. The lure of making his mark in the complex emerging mass market while revitalising a somewhat tired brand at the same time proved irresistible.

After assuming his new position in 2008, Tony negotiated the sale of the company to a financially strong shareholder with great synergies. He then set about revamping the company from the bottom up.

Free of financial constraints, Tony built the OBC Group into the fastest-growing player in its sector, with over 50 stores trading profitably. Most of the OBC Chicken stores are franchised and store count will increase to 80+ by the year 2020.

Tony is passionate about franchising and keen to give back to the industry. He joined FASA’s Board of Directors in 2012, served as its chairman for two terms during 2018 and 2019 and currently holds the office of Immediate Past Chair.

Under Tony’s leadership, an independent panel of judges named the OBC Group FASA Franchisor of the Year in 2015 and 2016. Moreover, the South African Portuguese Chamber of Commerce (SAPCC) named OBC Large Business of the Year in 2016 and 2017 and Best Franchise in 2018.

His busy schedule notwithstanding, Tony also serves as a director of the Consumer Goods Council of SA and of the SAPCC. He lives in Johannesburg, is happily married and has two teenage sons. He is a keen cyclist and also contributes to deserving charitable causes.

Spencer Sonn_3_UNC.tif

S Sonn

Managing Director, Woolworths Foods SA

Spencer is the Managing Director of Woolworths Foods Division. After undergraduate study in Social Science at UCT, he joined Woolworths in 1995 as a Store Trainee Manager. He spent 6 years in Store Management and then joined the Foods Division as a Buyer in Fresh Produce in 2001. Since then he has held various management roles across both Fresh and Long Life Foods. He held the position of Trading Head for Long Life Food for five years before being appointed as the Managing Director of Woolworths Foods in September 2015. In the same year, he completed the GMP Executive Education Programme at Harvard University.


C Maponya

CEO, Maponya Group

Chichi is currently Managing Director of Maponya Group, responsible for all business activities of Maponya Group subsidiaries, management, growth and diversification strategy. Chichi is founder and Director of Nalesa Resources, a women owned company focusing on mining, procurement and commodities trading. She previously served on several other boards; Intertoll Africa, Sitech Systems and Kwezi V3 among others, and is trustee of the Marina Maponya Memorial Fund. She has hosted a number of events including Tourism Indaba in1994 and was TV presenter for programme that encouraged domestic tourism in SA. She is a graduate from the University of Natal with a BComm Degree.


R Behrens

Financial Executive, Tiger Brands

Russel currently occupies the position of Financial Executive of the Grains division within Tiger Food Brands comprising Milling, Baking, Cereals, Rice and Sorghum Beverages. He holds a B.Com degree and a Certificate in the Theory of Accountancy from the University of Cape Town and is a qualified Chartered Accountant. After beginning his career with Langeberg Co-operative in Cape town, he has held various senior financial positions across the Tiger Brands businesses over the last 25 years.


M Neethling - B Soc Sci (Economics, Politics, Bus Admin), MBA

Business Executive: Groceries, Pioneer Foods

Martin Neethling has extensive strategic marketing and management experience gained during a career spanning 30 years. During this time he held various directorships and senior management roles in the retail, advertising and FCMG sectors. Most notably he was previously the Managing Director of Berry Bush BBDO, Marketing and Financial Services Director at the Ackermans Group and Chairman of Jay-Jays. He joined Pioneer Foods in 2015 and served as Chief Marketing Officer until 1 July 2017, when he was appointed executive of the Groceries Division. As an Associate at the UCT Unilever Institute of Strategic Marketing he has amassed significant insight and understanding of the South African consumer landscape – important skills which he brings to his portfolio.

Martin joined the Group in October 2015.


B Botten

Divisional Managing Director, SPAR Southrand

Brett was appointed as the Divisional Managing Director at SPAR South Rand in April 2010. He joined SPAR in the Eastern Cape in 1994 in the position of Sales Manager and was promoted to Managing Director of that division in 1999. He has since then held the positions of Divisional Managing Director of both SPAR Lowveld and SPAR North Rand.

Brett completed his tertiary studies at the university of Port Elizabeth and qualified as a Charted Accountant in 1989. He completed his basic training in the military service at Voortrekkerhoogte in 1990 and completed the year as part of the Eastern Cape Internal Audit Unit. Prior to joining SPAR, Brett held other positions at Hella as Financial Accountant and Sales Manager: Aftermarket Sales between the years 1991 to 1994.
When he has spare time, Brett enjoys sport and the outdoors, reading books, spending time with his family and listening to music; his interests lie in business, leadership and wine collection.


S Zoueihid

CEO, British American Tobacco

Soraya Zoueihed was appointed as Area Director of BAT Southern Africa Area in January 2016, following three years as General Manager at BAT France. Soraya joined the BAT Group over 19 years ago and has held several senior management roles in Finance in many markets, including Egypt, Switzerland and the UK. She counts her time in France as a career highlight and found her perfect fit in General Management and the challenge of a turnaround business in a very complex environment. With a passion for the business and its people, Soraya believes it is a challenging, yet exciting time for British American Tobacco South Africa, offering many new opportunities. Soraya lives in Cape Town with her husband and young son.


Gilles Antoine

Country Manager, L’Oreal South Africa

Gilles Antoine has 28 years of experience, 23 of which have been international assignments. His professional journey has taken him to different markets namely Mexico, Brazil, Venezuela and Paris between 2001 and 2012 before taking up his role as the head of L’Oreal Romania until August 2018.

In September 2018, he joined L’Oreal South Africa as Country Manager of the largest subsidiary in Africa. His mission is to transform L’Oreal South Africa to make it the leader in its market and one of the best companies to work for.


R Rushton

Distell, Managing Director

Richard joined Distell on 1 November 2013. Richard’s role is to ensure that the company delivers on its key objectives. He is also responsible for building a high performance culture within the company. Richard obtained his BCom degree from University of Witwatersrand in 1985. He has extensive knowledge of the local and international liquor industry both in a commercial and marketing capacity having worked in senior leadership roles in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Richard is married with two children.

Tesco, April 2012. David North

David North

Group Executive – Strategy and Corporate Affairs Pick n Pay Stores

David joined Pick n Pay in January 2014 as Group Executive – Strategy and Corporate Affairs. Before joining the business, he was Executive Director of the Sustainable Consumption Institute at the University of Manchester.

David worked for Tesco plc between 2002 and 2012 as Community and Government Director, and subsequently as UK Corporate Affairs Director. Prior to that, he specialised in domestic and European Union policy in central government in the UK, and was Private Secretary to UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair between 1999 and 2001. David holds a doctorate in Modern History from the University of Oxford.



CEO, Unilever

Luc-Olivier Marquet, Executive Vice President of Unilever South Africa has 23 years experience in the FMCG industry, most of which was spent in developing and emerging markets.

He worked for the L’Oreal group in Europe, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Miami and the Philippines until 2013 as well and led as the President and Managing Director of L’Oreal in the Philippines.

His background includes  working in Marketing (Brand Building and Brand Development), before moving to Customer Development as a Key Account Manager, then into Travel Retail (Europe and Americas). He has 10 years experience as a Country Managing Director with L’Oreal.

He joined Unilever in August 2013 as Vice President for Unilever West Africa and Vice Chairman for the Board of Unilever Ghana Limited.

He was Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Unilever Cote D’Ivoire. In that role he was responsible for developing Unilever business in the 13 countries west of Nigeria, which includes 3 operating companies (Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, and Niger) and representation offices.

David worked for Tesco plc between 2002 and 2012 as Community and Government Director, and subsequently as UK Corporate Affairs Director. Prior to that, he specialised in domestic and European Union policy in central government in the UK, and was Private Secretary to UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair between 1999 and 2001. David holds a doctorate in Modern History from the University of Oxford.

28_8L8A8033_Helen adjusted



Helen is the General Manager at Mars Multisales Africa. Mars Multisales Africa is a division of Mars Incorporated, a global family owned business that employs over 100 000 associates around the world, well known for producing global brands such as M&M’s®, Snickers®, Pedigree®, Whiskas®, Royal Canin®, Orbit® & Airwaves® gum, Royco® and many more.

As General Manager, she is responsible for the performance of the Southern African unit across all the major dimensions. She is accountable for every line of the unit’s P&L and how the unit makes a difference to people and planet through performance. Ultimately she is responsible for managing Vision and Purpose of the unit, driving performance, nurturing our culture, building the talent pipeline and enhancing our reputation.

Prior to joining Mars, Helen worked for Kimberly Clark, Gillette/P&G, Kellogg’s, EMI Music and Danone.

Helen holds a Diploma in Medical Technology from Wits University as well as a Diploma in Sales and Marketing from the Graduate School of Marketing (IMM). She also studied Advanced Leadership at the Stellenbosch University and in 2018 successfully completed the Mars General Manager Development program. Over the years, she has been nominated for or won many industry awards including the Standard Bank Rising Star Award, various Sales and Industry Awards, and was also nominated for the Standard Bank Woman in Business of the Year 2014 award for demonstrating her commitment to excellence.

Helen and her partner, Brad, have three children. She is passionate about family and is also a Pet loving Mom to 2 beautiful cats, a Labrador and a tortoise. During her spare time, she enjoys participating in various kinds of sports, reading and spending quality time with her family.

HR & Nominations Committee

The HR and Nominations Committee of the Board consist of three (3) non-executive directors of the Board, chaired by Mr D Smollan.

The role of this committee is to consider and advise the Board on the Company’s general framework on remuneration of employees of the Company, as well as matters relating to performance and human resources aspects of the business generally. The Committee is also responsible for the nomination for the non-executive directors to serve on the Board.

The Audit and Risk Committee

The Audit and Risk Committee of the Board consists of 4 non-executive directors, Mr G Kirk, Mr B Botten, Ms C Maponya and it is chaired by Mr R Behrens. The committee is appointed and performs its function as set out in section 94 (7)(f) of the Companies Act, 2008 and its terms of reference.

The purpose of the Committee is to assist the Board in discharging its duties relating to the safeguarding of assets; risk evaluation and risk management; the operation of adequate financial and administrative systems including internal control; accurate reporting to members and other stakeholders and provision of financial statements in compliance with all applicable legal requirements and accounting standards; and compliance with relevant laws, regulations and procedures.