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Posted 29 May 2023

Wits Business School becomes the official Education Category Sponsor of 2nd Annual Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards

Wits Business School (WBS) is excited to be named the official education sponsor for the Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards 2023, to be held in Sandton on 15 June.

The Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards, which recognises and celebrates South African brand and marketing excellence, aligns with WBS’s mission to nurture and develop young leadership talent and provide tangible support for young business owners.

As part of the sponsorship, WBS Executive Education is offering all 16 winners a place on its Managing & Leading People (MLP) short course, valued at R200,000.00.

“We are thrilled to be able to provide these talented young entrepreneurs with an opportunity to enhance their skills and capabilities, and to expose them to the best in management knowledge and tools as they prepare to lead their ventures into the future,” says Leoni Grobler, Director of Executive Education at WBS.

WBS’s sponsorship also includes a place on its renowned nine-month Management Advancement Programme (MAP), which will be awarded to the overall winner.

Pat Mahlangu, CEO of Lerato Agency and the driving force behind the Awards, believes that not enough recognition is given to youth who are playing an active role in building our economy.

“The Top 16 Youth-owned Brands Awards understands that young people are fighting an economical fight. In the high rise of unemployment in the 18-35 age group, these awards recognise the ones trying to make a difference. They are creators of businesses, brands and most importantly employment. They are the drivers of this economy,” he says.

Professor Maurice Radebe, Director and Head of WBS, himself a former entrepreneur, is passionate about developing the next generation of South African leaders in business and industry.  “At the heart of our mission at WBS is a commitment to support the development of agile and ethical leaders who positively impact our country and continent. We are excited at the opportunity to celebrate and support youth entrepreneurship in South Africa during the lead up to Youth Day.”

This year’s Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards will be preceded by a festival of youth-owned brands on 14 and 15 June at the Sandton Convention Centre.

Media enquiries

Khanyi Maisela:
065 965 0562

Alison Gaylard:
084 726 7514


The top 16 youth-owned brands awards are a platform that celebrates and recognizes youth excellence. This spectacular initiative aims to support youth-owned brands and makes sure that their efforts are seen. These awards acknowledge that these youth-owned brands are contributing to job creation and economic development in South Africa. What started off as an online portal that celebrates the excellence of brands has now become a platform that these brands are given a chance to shine and known throughout the country. Shining a light on the ones who dare to make a difference.


Wits Business School is the Graduate School of Business administration of the University of the Witwatersrand, one of the top tertiary institutes in Africa. The School offers a variety of postgraduate academic programmes and executive education programmes and short courses. WBS also designs tailor-made, in-company programmes, partnering with client organisations to develop management capacity. With a full suite of programmes on offer, WBS delivers innovative, transformative, and immersive learning experiences using generative thinking methodologies.