Two women from the Western Cape have been hailed among the world’s top female entrepreneurs at the 2019 Enterprising Women Awards. Denise Stubbs of Thokozani Wines, and Jeanne Groenewald of Elgin Chickens have been named winners in their respective categories.
The awards are an annual event and are hosted by an American magazine called Enterprising Women, which honours women in seven categories, based on the size of their business.
Winners must demonstrate that they run a fast-growing business which places strong emphasis on actively uplifting and supporting other women and girls through entrepreneurship. The winners must also be strong leaders in their communities.
Thokozani, the Diemersfontein wines initiative in which farm workers were given a share of the business, has shown great success over the years. The company’s Ovation wine label is stocked in Woolworths stores.
“Thokozani is not just a shining example of transformation in the agricultural sector in the Western Cape, it’s grown into an internationally recognised, sustainable business venture under the leadership of Denise Stubbs,” MEC for Economic Opportunties, Beverly Schäfer said.
Elgin Chickens has claimed several local awards, and Jeanne Groenewald was named as one of the winners in the Department of Agriculture’s Female Entrepreneur of the Year awards in 2018.
“Jeanne Groenewald has taken Elgin from a few backyard chickens to a major business which now employs over 600 people, over the two decades she has been in business,” Schäfer said.
“These two women are the only South Africans to have been recognised among some of the world’s top entrepreneurs and are in illustrious company on the list. We congratulate them on winning this award, which not only recognises their business leadership, but also the role they play in building up their communities and in developing other women entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurship is often tough, and requires tenacity and heart. Through their hard work, Denise and Jeanne have built businesses which create jobs and allow people to meaningfully participate in the economy,” she said.