by Herman Manson (@marklives) We list the most-read-about people on MarkLives during 2016.

1. Management moves at Ogilvy & Mather SA (Carol Gallarelli & Nicky Schermer)

Ogilvy & Mather (O&M) South Africa announced that Carol Gallarelli and Nicky Schermer will take up new senior responsibilities in the agency. Gallarelli has assumed the role of group marketing director, having overseen Ogilvy Public Relations (OPR) Cape Town. In her new role, she reports to CEO of O&M SA, Abey Mokgwatsane, and remains based in Cape Town. To replace Gallarelli, Schermer took over the reins as MD of Ogilvy PR Cape Town in October 2016 and reports to Joanna Oosthuizen, national MD of Ogilvy PR SA.

Carol Gallarelli and Nicky Schermer


2. Ahmed Tilly joins FCB Joburg as joint chief creative officer

Ahmed Tilly, the co-founder of iconic South African agency, Black River FC, joined FCB Joburg as joint CCO, alongside Jonathan Deeb, in November 2016.

Read also: Black River FC still looks to score

Ahmed Tilly


3. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Suhana Gordhan

by Veli Ngubane. Suhana Gordhan’s introduction to adland wasn’t promising, so much so that, after being told what to wear to work and suggestions that she work upon tampon ads, she even left the industry. Thankfully, she returned and has risen to become FCB Joburg creative director. To succeed in adland, she says, “you need to fall in love with the work you do”. There’s also another great love in her life: capoeira. This young and gifted creative tells us how she’s killing it — and what capoeira is.

Suhana Gordhan


4. Mthunzi Plaatjie to head AVATAR in Cape Town

Mthunzi Plaatjie was appointed as AVATAR’s managing director in Cape Town. The agency opened its office in the Mother City earlier this year, after being awarded the Chevron South Africa digital account following a three-way pitch. Plaatjie came to AVATAR after having successfully launched BET Network (Black Entertainment Television) across a number of territories in Africa.

Mthunzi Plaatjie


5. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Mukondi Ralushayi & Nkgabiseng Motau

by Veli Ngubane. In their four years in the ad industry, copywriter Mukondi Ralushayi and art director Nkgabiseng Motau have been involved in some particularly creative campaigns, such as the award-winning “Share a Coke with Bobby” TV commercial and an Old Mutual renewable energy social impact campaign. Adding to a great 2015, they even attended Cannes Lions! Now they’ve gone on their own and plan to keep killing it through their recently established creative hub, THINK.

Mukondi Ralushayi and Nkgabiseng Motau


6. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Festus Masekwameng

by Veli Ngubane. Our mission to meet creatives who are young, gifted and killing it! moved on to award-winning creative director and entrepreneur, Festus Masekwameng. He’s travelled a long way from rural Limpopo via Hunt Lascaris, MotherRussia and McCann Worldgroup South Africa to MKT Media, where he’s now managing partner.

Festus Masekwameng


7. The agency bosses catches some shine:

Agency Leaders 2015: Most admired ad agency boss in Jozi

Here it was Brett Morris, GCEO and ECD of now FCB Africa, with Gareth Leck, Joe Public United CEO, as runner-up. Contenders included Ahmed Tilly, then Black River FC ECD; Jerry Mpufane, M&C Saatchi Abel Jhb group MD; and Felix Kessel, Owen Kessel Leo Burnett CEO.

Agency Leaders 2015: Most admired ad agency boss in Cape Town

For 2015, James Barty, K

ing James Group co-founder and CEO, was voted as the most-respected agency boss by his Cape Town peers; there was no runner-up.

Agency Leaders 2015: Most admired ad agency boss in South Africa

Brett Morris, GCEO & ECD of FCB Africa, took top honours in 2015. Gareth Leck, CEO of Joe Public United, was our runner-up. Ahmed Tilly, Black River FC ECD; Jerry Mpufane, M&C Saatchi Abel Jhb group MD; and Felix Kessel, Owen Kessel Leo Burnett CEO, were all named contenders.

Look out for our Agency Leaders’ Most Admired 2016, starting Monday, 31 January 2017!

Making of 2015 MarkLives Agency Leaders Most Admired poll certificates 8 photo slider


8. Young, Gifted & Killing It: I See A Different You

by Veli Ngubane A collective of Sowetan-born creatives are telling it like it really is, as was discovered when spending time with Justice and Innocent Mukheli and Vuyo Mpantsha. Started as a photographic blog, the I See A Different You collective aims to change the world’s view of Africa from the negative to the positive. “As Africans, our story has always been told by others and as I See A Different You we want to tell our own stories through art,” they explain. The trio’s blog has now morphed into a multifaceted enterprise. Young and gifted, Mpantsha and the twins are definitely killing it!

I See A Different You


9. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Grant Sithole

by Veli Ngubane. This new monthly column — to find out more about the new breed of creatives in the worlds of adland and marketing — started with Grant Sithole, creative director at Ogilvy & Mather. Sithole is a rising star who has executed great work for leading brands. What makes him stand out are his extensive local knowledge and insights, which enable him to engage intimately with consumers.

Grant Sithole


10. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Sbu Sitole

by Veli Ngubane. With black-owned startups seemingly popping up all over the place, Sibusiso “Sbu” Sitole feels that we’re “on the cusp of real and sustainable change” in an adland which has been slow to transform. What’s now needed, says the young and gifted creative director and co-founder of 100% black-owned ad agency, The Odd Number, is for more big brands to give smaller agencies a chance. However, he tells us, if small agencies want to be successful, they’ve got to show they can run a world-class business.

Also see The Odd Number builds on two

Sbu Sitole


11. Young, Gifted & Killing It: Thabang Tipi Manyelo

by Veli Ngubane. Thabang Tipi Manyelo is a natural-born storyteller. He’s been telling stories for as long as he can remember. Then he made a life-changing discovery after happening to attend a Vega School open day: “I just couldn’t believe that there was a job that allowed you to write mini stories, and get paid for it!” Two Pendorings and a Loerie later, this young and definitely gifted copywriter has been killing it! Look no further than Jabu’s Left Testicle to find out what he’s all about.

Thabang Manyelo


12. Chris Gotz back in SA, joins OFYT

Chris Gotz, former co-chief creative officer of Ogilvy & Mather South Africa,  returned to South Africa to join Old Friends Young Talent (OFYT) as its newly appointed national creative director. This came as OFYT executive creative director and partner, Greg Burke, left the agency and the country for France.

OFYT with Chris Gotz


13. Philip Ireland leaves Ireland/Davenport

Ireland/Davenport, a WPP agency, announced that founding partner, Philip Ireland, would be leaving the agency. At the same time, it announced the appointment of Karabo Songo as CEO.

Also see Philip Ireland’s advice for ad agency entrepreneurs.

Philip Ireland 'headshot'
Herman MansonHerman Manson (@marklives) is the founder and editor of He was the founding editor of media.toolbox (1998–2006) and Mobile.Works, and the co-founder of Brand magazine. He has served on the editorial boards of The Journal for Convergence, as well as of Fast Company South Africa. Winner of the 2011 Vodacom Social Media Journalist of the Year award, he was also a finalist twice in the Highway Africa Award for the Innovative Use of New Media in Africa (2003 and 2004). Over his 20-year-plus career, Herman has contributed to numerous journals and websites in South Africa and abroad, including the Mail & Guardian, .net, Intelligence, AdVantage, Men’s Health, Computer World and African Communications. He has consulted on web architecture to several financial institutions.

Sign up now for the MarkLives email newsletter every Monday and Thursday, now including headlines from the company newsroom service!


Published by Herman Manson is edited by Herman Manson. Follow us on Twitter -

Online CPD Courses Psychology Online CPD Courses Marketing analytics software Marketing analytics software for small business Business management software Business accounting software Gearbox repair company Makeup artist