Africa’s most prestigious business awards, the annual 2015 All Africa Business Leaders Awards (AABLA) in Partnership with CNBC Africa head to Sandton next week, celebrating the pioneers and change-makers in the Southern African business landscape.

With Southern Africa’s finalists having been revealed for their momentous contributions to the region’s prosperity, the second regional round of the AABLA will take place in Sandton on September 30th to announce this years winners and celebrate the awards 5th anniversary.

The best in Southern African business then contend against other regional winners from West and East Africa in the All Africa AABLA Finale, to take place on November 13th, striving for the title of Africa’s most exceptional business-person across seven distinct categories.

“The All Africa Business Leaders Awards in Partnership with CNBC Africa celebrate a distinction accentuated by confidence and exceptional passion. In turn, the Awards recognise those unforgettable business leaders who have made a clear impact in their respective areas by demonstrating innovation, integrity, accountability and best practice on the continent.”

– Managing Director of the ABN Group, Roberta Naicker

After the Southern African round, the AABLA will move on to West Africa, celebrating the region’s business leaders on October 22nd, having enjoyed a successful run in East Africa on September 15th. Regional winners will then vie for the ultimate title of Africa’s business icon in their sector at the esteemed All Africa Business Leaders Awards in Partnership with CNBC Africa All Africa Finale in Johannesburg on November 13th, 2015 hosted by Bakgatla-Ba-Kgafela.

The finalists for each category in the Southern African round are:

Young Business Leader of the Year – Southern Africa

  • Ashley Uys, Managing Director of Real World Diagnostics
  • Sylvester Chauke, Founder of DNA BrandArchitects
  • John Nicolakakis, CEO of Romans Pizza

Entrepreneur of the Year – Southern Africa Presented by Sea Harvest

  • Samuel Seeff, Chairman of Seeff Properties
  • John Nicolakakis, CEO of Romans Pizza
  • Braam van Huyssteen, Founder of Tekkie Town
  • Jason Xenopoulos, CEO of NATIVE

Business Leader of the Year – Southern Africa Presented by Bosch

  • Edward Kieswetter, CEO of Alexander Forbes
  • Dr Johan van Zyl, Group Chief Executive of Sanlam
  • Sisa Ngebulana, CEO of Billion Group

Business Woman of the Year – Southern Africa

  • Jeanne Groenewald, Founder of Elgin Free Range Chickens
  • Natasha Sideris, Founder of Tashas
  • Louisa Mojela and Gloria Serobe, WIPHOLD

Philanthropist of the Year – Southern Africa

  • Solly Noor of Solly and Zohra Noor Foundation
  • Wendy Ackerman of The Ackerman Foundation
  • Wendy Appelbaum of Wendy Appelbaum Foundation

The Lifetime Achievement Award Presented by the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency (GGDA) will once again be selected by the judging committee and announced on the night. As a new category to the fold, the Industrialist of the Year category, will take on a similar format.

“Southern African business leaders have always been very strong contenders and we look forward to seeing who will win this years regional event and represent the region at the All Africa Finale to be hosted in Johannesburg.”

– Head of ABN Productions, producers of the AABLA, Alexander Leibner

Guests will once again be treated to the best of Jaguar Land Rover at each of the regional events, with the 2015 AABLA Southern Africa hosts dressed by Carducci.

For more information, go to and follow the 2015 All Africa Business Leaders Awards (AABLA) in Partnership with CNBC Africa on Twitter: @aablawards and #AABLA2015.

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