Abey Mokgwatsane

CEO: VWV Group

If you don't know Abey Mokgwatsane by name you'll know him by the experiences he creates for his clients, Fifa being one of them. As CEO of the VWV Group, a global brand experience agency, Mokgwatsane fought off 30 international agencies to win the tender to produce the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2010 Fifa World Cup. How he did this comes as no surprise to anyone in the industry. Even when he was just a few years out of advertising school Mokgwatsane headed Castle Loud, a young adult marketing initiative for Castle Lager, and launched Miller Genuine Draft into the South African market. Not surprisingly, he earned three managing director awards for marketing excellence at SAB. In 2005 Mokgwatsane and two partners bought a majority stake in VWV, working hard to grow this Johannesburg-based agency into a global operation, with projects reaching into 26 countries. With Mokgwatsane at the helm VWV won its 12th Loerie Grand Prix for the World Cup closing ceremony and took the Financial Mail specialist agency of the year award in 2010. Building an internationally recognised brand may be the ultimate goal for many CEOs, but Mokgwatsane is different. As a founding member of Young Business for South Africa, a non-profit networking organisation for young professionals, Mokgwatsane has been at the forefront of developing leadership for the past 12 years. It's the reason he helped set up the Experiential Association of South Africa, an industry body established to advance training, empowerment and delivery standards. His latest project, Think Tank, is focused on raising the profile of young business leaders by giving them a voice and a platform on which to share their industry knowledge and experience. It's not hard to believe that this 33-year- old change agent grew up thinking he would one day be president. In many ways, he's already leading our country forward. � Cat Pritchard

Blog: abeymokgwatsane.com Twitter: @abeyphonogenic