June 18, 2024

Telkom shines spotlight on 10 Phenomenal Women in tech

4 min read

Telkom introduces the “Phenomenal 10”: a distinguished selection of women from the information and communications technology (ICT) sector who embody the epitome of women’s potential, transcending adversity to achieve greatness. These women were carefully chosen and recognised as exceptional women who have demonstrated remarkable prowess.

Telkom has taken a stance on showing its unwavering dedication to women, through a unique opportunity to spotlight this initiative as one that will not only foster a stronger bond with its brand but also underscore Telkom’s resolute commitment and deep respect for women.

In today’s world, there are an array of challenges that our society, both locally and globally, grapples with – many of which disproportionately impact women. Take, for instance, the pervasive income disparities, the alarming unemployment rates, and the dearth of business funding opportunities. These obstacles weigh heavily on women, perpetuating a cycle of disempowerment when left unaddressed.

“Guided by our brand’s ethos of ‘Leaving no one behind’ in a digitally connected world, it’s essential that we take proactive steps to showcase our profound acknowledgment of the struggles and successes of these remarkable women,” states chief marketing officer at Telkom, Gugu Mthembu. “It is also important for us to call on South African women to forge their path in key economic domains, leveraging technology to emerge as entrepreneurs and leaders in their own right.

“Our commitment to championing the growth and empowerment of women in South Africa has remained steadfast. True to our brand’s philosophy, we’re dedicated to illustrating the tangible outcomes of our devotion by celebrating women who are achieving incredible feats through Telkom Future Makers, Telkom Foundation, and within our very own company, as well as among our customer base. This celebration will is all-encompassing, embrace women from all walks of life, the pinnacle of this celebration will be the through a Phenomenal 10 High-Tea, a momentous event to honour these women as the inaugural members of the Phenomenal 10 cohort,” Mthembu adds.

This event will not only be a remarkable milestone but also the birth of a lasting initiative that Telkom aims to carry forward in the coming years.

The stringent criteria for the Phenomenal 10 selection were:

  • Exemplifying innovation in digitally enabled industries
  • Exhibiting a pioneering or substantial impact in their respective sectors
  • Resonating with diverse consumer interests

Honourees this year include:

Mamello Mofokeng (28) – Chief Executive Officer at Saturated

An entrepreneur, data scientist and philanthropist who, in 2019, was accepted into AlphaCode Explore: a data science–focused financial technology entrepreneurship programme, where her business was selected as a top 4 business to be incubated by the Rand Merchant Investment–backed incubation programme, AlphaCode Incubate.

Queen Ndlovu (54) – CEO and Founder of QP Drone Tech

Queen Ndlovu has revolutionised the drone industry in South Africa and beyond. The company has made a difference in the country already, despite the sluggish uptake of drone technology. In March 2022, QP Drone Tech launched a project in Alexandra that saw its drones fly over the suburb and assess its vulnerability to disaster.

Baratang Miya (50) – CEO of GirlHype

Baratang is the CEO of GirlHYPE, a non-profit that empowers women and youth from underrepresented groups in the ICT sector in South Africa. She has partnered with organisations like UN Women, Mozilla, TechWomen, SiliconCape and Technovation to develop women’s digital literacy.

Emma Sadlier (38) – Founder and CEO at The Digital Law Company

South Africa’s leading expert on social media law. Her company, the Digital Law Company, specialises in education and advising corporates, employees, schools, parents, teachers and universities on the legal, disciplinary and reputational risks of social media.

Thembiso Magajana (28) – Founder of Social Coding South Africa

Thembiso is a self-described inclusion activist and technophile who partners with corporates, government and family foundations to help bring digital inclusion to rural communities.

Zandile Mkwanazi (29) – CEO of GirlCode

GirlCode is a social enterprise aimed at empowering young girls and women through technology. Over the past eight years, GirlCode has grown to be the largest women in tech–led educational organisation in South Africa, impacting more than 60 000 girls and women.

Mathebe Molise (38) – Founder of Beauty on TApp

Mathebe is the dynamic South African entrepreneur behind Beauty on TApp, a ground-breaking digital platform that is revolutionising the beauty industry in South Africa. She was an investment banker before she founded the business.

Lindiwe Matlali (43) – Founder and CEO of Africa Teen Geeks and Apodytes

Africa Teen Geeks is Africa’s largest non-profit computer science education platform; Apodytes is an award-winning technology company.

Emma Dicks (27) – Director at CodeSpace

Emma is a director at CodeSpace, an education institution that specialises in teaching coding & software development. CodeSpace has received global acclaim for its highly effective initiatives that foster diversity in the tech world.

Tao Boyle (24) – Co-Founder of Foondamate

FoondaMate is built as a chat-based AI-powered learning bot that helps students get fast, easy and safe access to study materials and help via open chat platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.

Michaela de Bruyn – Tech-Savvy Business Analyst

Michaela is a dedicated tech professional who has evolved from being a data analyst and BI analyst into a seasoned business analyst. With a rich background in various aspects of the tech field, she’s embarked on an exciting journey of innovation and growth.

“This year, we take pride in celebrating women who have excelled in the following categories: Telkom Futuremakers, ICT, Content Hubs, E-Commerce, EduTech and Social Enterprises. As we end this Women’s Month, let us stand together in saluting the extraordinary women who have shattered ceilings, defied norms, and illuminated the path for a future where women’s achievements know no bounds,” concludes Mthembu.

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