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Meet the Speakers at SAMRA Annual Conference 2018

Guest Speakers 

Jason Brownlee, Company director, innovator, data analyst & consumer insight expert, Colourtext Jason is a senior analytics and market research innovator with corporate board level and entrepreneurial start-up experience in the media and technology sectors. He founded Colourtext in 2013, a self-funded spin-out from Dollywagon Media Sciences which he founded in 2009. Colourtext develops Segmentation, Machine Learning and Semantic Analysis tools that can be applied to a range of social media, CRM and market research data sets. Colourtext also designs and delivers global scale quantitative consumer insight and segmentation projects. Clients include Samsung, Bloomberg, Abbott Laboratories, Deloitte, Spotify & Warner Music Group. Jason is Director International Business Development at radioGAUGE International, in partnership with the U.K.’s Radio Advertising Bureau and Dipsticks Research Ltd. radioGAUGE is the global standard for evaluating radio advertising, operating in 7 languages across 12 time zones, has measured over 1000 radio campaigns and been credited with generating $320 million of radio revenue growth over the last 10 years. At Dipsticks Research, where Jason was Research Director until 2009, he created and launched ‘Other lines of enquiry’ as a premium media research consultancy, growing annual revenues from zero to £1million within 3 years. Blue-chip clients included the BBC, CNN, Global Radio, ITV, The Guardian Media Group, Sony BMG and the Telegraph Media Group. Was part of the team that created Panel Base, now a leading online research panel business. Jason was also Head of Consumer Insight at EMAP plc. From 1995 to 2004, where he designed, delivered and marketed high-impact market research projects that drove the development of Emap’s media brands such as Kiss, FHM, Q, Kerrang and Magic. His work focussed on creating audience growth and driving advertising revenues. Jason holds a BA Fine and Studio Arts from Goldsmiths, University of London (1992) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Civic Design, Town & Regional Planning from the University of Liverpool (1995).
Alexan Carrilho, Africa, Middle East & Pakistan Operations Training & Process Manager, Kantar Alexan joined Kantar in 2016. She started her research career in 2000 with Statistics South Africa, as Professional/Principal Survey Statistician and was also Acting Manager for Development and Methodology. From there she joined Ipsos where she progressed from Sampling manager in 2004, to Business Unit Director: Operations in 2006, to Head of Quality and Information Security in 2011, to Business Unit Director: Business Excellence & Commercial Support in 2012, and ASI: Research Excellence Director in 2013. Alexan holds a Diploma in Management in Practice from University of Cape Town (2010), Honours (1997) and Masters in Sociology from University of Johannesburg (1999) where she also obtained her first degree, BA Social Science and Humanities, in 1995.
Mike Cooke, Chair of Legal Affairs Committee, ESOMAR Mike has been in research since 1973 and has held many industry positions. These include Vice President of ESOMAR, a Trustee of the Marketing Sciences Institute in the USA, and Vice Chairman of the British Market Research Society. A well-known speaker on marketing research, who has authored many papers, he won the ESOMAR Excellence Award for the Best Paper presented at any ESOMAR event in 2008. He has also won the ESOMAR Congress Award for “Best Case History”, on training the next generation of market researchers, and at the ESOMAR Online Panels Conference, the best paper award for his work on migrating a major market measurement study online and the British Market Research Society’s “Research Effectiveness Award” for his research on music and education. In 1999 he was awarded the honorary post of Visiting Research Officer in Media studies at the University of Leeds in recognition of his work in the new media field. His career has been on the agency side including running his own agency and many years spent at NOP and GfK where he was responsible Global Director for Online Panel Management responsible for panels in over 30 countries. He is a graduate of the London School of Economics, where he won both the Harold Laski Prize for Government and the LSE Undergraduate Scholarship. He also has a Masters degree, in Political Behaviour, from the University of Essex.
Sifiso Falala, Chief Executive Officer, Plus 94 Research Sifiso established Plus94 in 1998, after 6 years as Research Director at Research International. Plus 94 Research is focused on providing decision makers in the private and public sectors with actionable scientific market research data to enable a more informed decision-making process by designing, implementing and interpreting research surveys, thus enabling businesses and organisations to operate at optimum levels whether they are launching a product or systems or assessing the applicability of current campaigns and strategies in place. Sifiso comes with extensive knowledge from his observations made over the past 20 years in the South African market in terms of consumer behaviour. He has a keen interest in how South Africa fares compared to our global counter parts in terms of the quality and accuracy of research being produced in the country, and alignment with best industry and global practices, and current trends that South Africa has seen in leadership vs. performance of organisations as well as the impact of the workplace environment on the livelihoods of people. He is able to provide global perspectives on South Africa’s businesses’ performance against other global businesses. Plus 94 Research contributions and dedication to the growth and enrichment of market research across industries is evidenced in its commitment to conducting, compiling and publishing Top Companies South Africa, based on vision and leadership, Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE), overall workplace environment, as well as a focus on products and services, financial performance, governance, corporate communications and brand perceptions and visibility, which has become the largest annual corporate reputation study in the country since its launch eight years ago.
Christine van Niekerk, Shopper Marketing Director including Trade Category, E-Commerce, Unilever South Africa Christine lives in Durban, South Africa, is happily married and the mother of two cute little girls. She enjoys seeing the world as a means to quench her wanderlust and chooses mindful living with a healthy lifestyle. She has held previous roles in Customer and Marketing disciplines with more than 16 years of experience. During her time at Unilever, Chris has rooted her understanding in converting sales of the omnichannel shopper, complemented by a Bachelor of Commerce degree, majoring in Business Management and Industrial Psychology. She is driven by the challenge of establishing and launching new brands into markets, these include Lifebuoy, Comfort Concentrate and Hellmann’s. Her passion is fuelled by an underlying strength to connect with people and the ability to arrange and solve complex situations.
Leonie Vorster, Chief Executive Officer, Southern African Marketing Research Association Leonie is the SAMRA CEO, and ESOMAR Representative for South Africa (2008 to date). She received the ESOMAR Representative Award for Strategy in 2017. She also serves the international data, research and insights community as a member of the ESOMAR Associations Sounding Board, the Global Market Research Industry Survey Sounding Board, and Project SERENE, the global research ethics complaints handling system. Leonie is registered at the Health Professions Council of South Africa as Research Psychologist. Leonie is an Honorary Fellow (Certified Strategic Management Professional) of the Unicaribbean Business School Nigeria and received a Leadership Award for Contribution to Market Research in 2014 at The World Marketing Congress in Mumbai, India, where she was also a guest speaker. Leonie is a founding member of the African Market Research Association (AMRA) and was a Director CEO during start-up in 2016/2017. She previously owned and managed Evolutions Research Solutions, a private research and research-based consulting firm (1998-2012). Leonie currently serves on the Services Sector Education and Training Authority Marketing and Communication Services Chamber Committee, chairs the SAMRA Code of Conduct committee, and chaired SAMRA in 2007-2008, the SAMRA Quality and Usefulness (2004-2006) and the International Communications portfolio (2008-2011) and the Sign Language Education and Development (SLED) Mancom (2007-2010). She also served on the Psychological Society of South Africa (PsySSA) Executive (2005-2007) and Council (1998-2007) and chaired the Division for Research and Methodology (2004-2006). Leonie has an MA (Research Psychology) from the Nelson Mandela University (1995) with distinctions in her Internship as well as subjects Advanced Quantitative Techniques, Advanced Research Methods, Consumer Psychology, and End-user Computing. She achieved a BA Honours (Psychology) cum laude with distinctions in Research Psychology, Medical and Neuropsychology, Community Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Personality Psychology, Psychometrics, Psychopathology, and Therapeutic Psychology (1992) and a BA (Communication Science) with distinctions in Psychology, Communication Science, Journalism, Communication Law, and Afrikaans (1991) from the University of Johannesburg, South Africa.


Selected Speakers and Authors

Welmarie Bouwer, Research Excutive, Ipsos Welmari joined Ipsos as a Research Executive for the Innoquest department in February of this year. While completing her Masters in Social and Psychological research at the University of the Witwatersrand, she was actively involved in creating and presenting academic research. Welmari is assisting in the planning, coordinating and administering of various research projects focused on innovation and forecasting.

Ricardo Braz, Account Manager, Ask Afrika The passion for solving problems has seen Ricardo enjoy a career in market research for over 13 years. Although having studied Geographical Information Systems at university, Ricardo’s entry into the research world was through a small geo-focused research firm called Gintar Tech in 2005 which provided the foundation of his career in all the stages of the research lifecycle. Deciding to break through into the research agency world, he joined Synovate in 2010 and within a year made the unknown leap to the Ipsos/Synovate office in Maputo. Research in Africa is a worthwhile experience! By 2012 he re-joined the Ipsos team here at home where he focused on corporate reputation, social, political, and government research. Highlights here included the opportunity to present at Parliament, to the Reserve Bank governor, participate in televised interviews during the election period, as well as a SAMRA presentation discussing research and politics. He now calls Ask Afrika home and continues to grow his repertoire in different methodologies and developing new products such as the geo spatial solution – GeoScope. He continues to learn new things every day and stretch possibilities – this is the fuel for the passion he has for market research.

Adam Brown, Senior Account Manager at Ipsos Adam is an innovation expert with Ipsos. His specific areas of focus include early stage idea and concept screening and testing, as well as the proprietary Duel methodology. Adam earned his PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology in 2016 from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, where he now holds the position of Adjunct Professor.

Shannon Dane, Consumer Insights Manager, Have You Heard Marketing Shannon has worked in market research for the last 3 years and financial research prior to that. She has experience in quantitative and qualitative methodologies, with a focus on clients in retail, FMCG and financial services. She has a special interest in social listening, big data, marketing science and analytics. She has completed a PGDipM from UCT in Marketing and a BA Honours in Brand Leadership from Vega.

Petrus de Kock, General Manager – Research, Brand South Africa Petrus has extensive experience as political analyst with a focus on the African political economy, the extractive industries, and political risk. He has lectured in Political Science and International Relations in South Africa and the USA and presented guest lectures and seminars and at various international conferences. Petrus has consulted and advised private and public entities on social, political and economic dynamics in the African market. He has published extensively on international affairs as well as African political, economic and security issues, and conducted several in depth field research projects in African countries including Sudan, Southern Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, and Mozambique. His research focuses on internal social, economic and developmental dynamics, as well as regional and international political economic factors. Petrus has a PhD Philosophy from the University of the North, and an MA (Cum Laude) in Political Science from University of Pretoria.

Kudzai Guvi, Senior Research & Insights Manager, Standard Bank Kudzai has more than 15 years of market research experience across an array of industries and portfolios, in addition to a rich academic background. In his current role, he is responsible for supporting and contributing to the overall advancement of strategic business decision making in Standard Bank’s Marketing Divisions, by providing value added business insights, recommendations and strategic input derived from conducting and analysing high quality, appropriate and cost efficient marketing research. He works across more than 17 African and a couple of international countries on a myriad of research projects including brand trackers, reputation studies, sponsorship and events studies, and is passionate about exploring new research methodologies and practices. He holds an MBA from De Montfort University (United Kingdom).

Jack Hlongwane, Senior Research Executive, KantarTNS Jack started his career in market research in 2011, over this period he has worked across numerous sectors including; FMCG, Financial, Government and the Gaming and Gambling industry. He is a seasoned qualitative researcher who is now dabbling and tinkering away in the world of quantitative research at KantarTNS. He is passionate about understanding the bottom of the pyramid and has published several papers on this topic.

Giulia Iorio-Ndlovu, Senior Insights Director for Sub Saharan Africa, PepsiCo Giulia is responsible for end to end Insights across the 3 Categories (Snacks, Beverages and Nutrition). Originally chemical engineer by background, she has grown passionate about consumer centricity and consumer driven innovation, and has built an extensive 20 years experience in global and multidisciplinary FMCG environments. She worked across the board on several Categories (Home Care, Personal Care, Foods & Beverages), hundreds of brands and across most geographies (North America, Latin America, Europe, Africa & Middle East, Asia). She has been developed and driven High Performance  to design and implement strategic consumer plans and communications and to use in depth consumer understanding to successfully shape and deliver category and innovation strategies. Before PepsiCo, Giulia was with Unilever In Italy and UK in Global roles for 12 years, across several Categories and in both mainstream and capability roles. She currently lives in Johannesburg with husband Mandla and son Joshua.

Ejaz Mirza, AVP – Client Development, Middle-East & Africa Ejaz is part of the Borderless Access leadership as AVP – Client development, Middle East & Africa, based in Dubai. Having thoroughly grinded in market research for the last 17 years across India and Middle East & Africa helps him to understand the perspective for client relationship building and developing the appropriate products & services suited for the region. Before Borderless Access, he has worked in India and ME across brands like IMRB India, Cross-Tabs and TNS Dubai. Ejaz has studied Economics, Stats during his Bachelors in Arts and major in marketing management for MBA from Institute for Technology and Management.

Andrea Morris, Senior Research Executive, KantarTNS Since completing her Masters in Sponsorship Research at the University of Stellenbosch in 2010, Andrea has pursued her passion in understanding how humans think and make decisions in her personal, as well as professional endeavours. From travelling across Asia and immersing herself in various cultures, to establishing her research career at KantarTNS, Andrea has developed a keen sense for insights generation and strategic thinking. Andrea has worked across a broad spectrum of industries, servicing clients in the telecoms, FMCG and alcohol sectors. She is currently working on the BAT account, where her key role is spending time on-site with clients and partnering with them to drive their business growth.

Andries Noeth, Head of Business Intelligence and Research Insights, Consulta Andries has been actively doing consulting and research for some of the most prominent clients in South Africa and abroad for the last 18 years. After completing his Master’s degree in Research Psychology he worked for the Bureau of market Research for two years before stating his career at Consulta as a Client Director. Currently He holds the position of head of Business Intelligence and Research Insights. As a senior consultant and manager of large scale research projects he has experience in a wide range of industries; retail, motor vehicle, pharmaceutical, financial, insurance, telecommunications and industrial. He is presently busy with his PhD in Research Psychology, investigating the appropriateness of different research methodologies during various stages within the customer journey.

Caitlin Noonan, Mobile Consultant, Kantar Caitlin is currently employed as a Mobile Consultant at Kantar with the Kantar Insights Mobile team and is closely involved in the commercial growth of mobile across Sub-Saharan Africa. She has presented at the SAMRA conference in 2014 and 2017, winning the Bright Young Minds Award in 2014 for her research paper on testing adverts using mobile research. Mobile research is her passion with a strong interest in social media research. Caitlin graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Business Science in Marketing at the University of Cape Town. Prior to joining the Kantar Insights Mobile team, Caitlin worked at KantarTNS Global Brand Equity Centre (2015-2017) where her interest for social media research began and at Pondering Panda (2013 – 2015) where she was exposed to the vast benefits of digital research, working on well-known fast food and FMCG brands.

Amoné Redelinghuys, Account Executive, Columinate Amoné is a market researcher specialising in quantitative and qualitative digital research. She completed her Master’s degree in Research Psychology at the North West University with distinction in 2013 and has been working for Columinate since. In 2014 she won the award for Best First Time Speaker, including the Silver award for second best presentation at the annual SAMRA conference. She was also awarded the QRCA foundation scholarship that enabled her to attend the QRCA annual conference in Orlando, Florida. In her role as Account Executive at Columinate, Amoné frequently designs strategies to meet her clients’ research briefs and objectives, and to help them overcome their research challenges.

Stacy Saggers, Associate Account Director, KantarTNS Stacy has been involved in the research industry for 10 years across both client and agency. Her experience of research from the perspective of the client in multinationals Unilever and Philip Morris has been valuable in developing her understanding of the client’s business issues as well as their practical implementation and potential challenges. Stacy is passionate about developing her client relationships into true partnerships in which research can proactively and practically assist the business in achieving its objectives. Stacy is married with two children and lives in Cape Town.

Harshvardhan Sarda, Executive Director, Ipsos Marketing Harsh has 15 years’ experience in the Research industry. He has a PGDM, Marketing Communication (MICA). Harsh has held various senior level leadership positions at Nielsen including Managing Director West Africa, Nigeria and Managing Director, Retail Vertical Africa. Harsh has presented at numerous conferences including International Retail Conference (2015), “Navigating retail landscape in Nigeria”, and East Africa Retail Summit where he authored a paper on advising an omni–channel strategy and win with the digitally connected shopper in Africa/Middle East.

Marguerite Steyn, Research Executive, KantarTNS Marguerite currently works for KantarTNS in Cape Town as a Research Executive in client service. She is part of a team that focuses on the fast food and alcohol industries but has collaborated on FMCG work as well. Her other passions lie with automation and programming, especially integration of different data sources and data visualisation. Marguerite has a Bachelor of Science in Human Life Sciences (with Psychology) (2012) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Marketing (2013) from Stellenbosch University. Prior to joining KantarTNS in 2016, she worked as a Junior Customer Analytics Analyst at HomeChoice (2015-2016) where she was exposed to retail and financial services analytics. Marguerite started off her research career with an internship at Pondering Panda in 2013 and later joined the Pondering Panda team as a Junior Research Executive (2014-2015), where she gained valuable experience in the digital research world.

Elsa Thirion-Venter, Director, MarkData Elsa has 30 years research experience in various fields of research such as psychological evaluation of drivers, test construction, survey methodology and media and communication research. She is a registered research psychologist at the Health Professions Council. She is also a SAMRA (Southern African Marketing Research Association) Accredited Researcher (SAR) and an Honorary Member of SAMRA. She was the Chairperson of the Pretoria SAMRA branch, national treasurer, Chairperson of SAMRA National and a SAMRA board member first representing small business and individual members and thereafter Academia. She lectured Marketing Research at the Unisa Graduate School of Business in 2002 and was a facilitator for the University of North West’s MBA course in Statistics and Economics in Pretoria from 2002-2005. She lectured Statistics in 2010, Design Psychology since 2011 and Media Research since 2010 for the Research Psychology Masters degree at the University of Pretoria. She was an e-tutor for Doctoral students at Unisa’s SBL from Africa and a field supervisor at the Da Vinci Institute. She is also a supervisor at the SBL and an external examiner at the Da Vinci Institute and the SBL.

Tomoko Ueta, Director, InnoQuest, Ipsos South Africa Tomoko joined Ipsos Novation Japan in mid 1990’s and developed her career in marketing research and consultancy with a focus on innovation, forecasting and brand portfolio management. Working closely with the leading multi-national clients, she’s contributed to the client’s innovation strategy and portfolio management across Asia and Africa – both emerging and developed markets.

Hendrik Van Blerk, Account Director, Ipsos Hendrik has 20 years’ experience in market research and strategy, both on the agency side and client side. He has an MA degree (Wits). Hendrik has worked at Markinor (1996-2008), Tiso Black Star (Times Media Limited) (2008-2015) and Ipsos (currently). His research experience spans many industries – including FMCG, media, telecommunications, retail and financial services – and a wealth of strategic analytical tools. Hendrik is the Shopper insights Lead for Ipsos SSA.

Luzelle van Niekerk, Project Director, Consulta Luzelle has a B.Com Honours in Marketing Management (2015), and completed a short course certificate in Customer Experience Management (2016). She started work at an educational center, managing the division and communication relations. Soon after, she started at Consulta where she is now part of the company for three years and has been appointed as a Project Director.

Monique van Staden, Project Manager, Consulta Monique has a B.Com Honours in Marketing Management (2017), and B.Com Marketing Management (2014-2017). She did part-time work for Adidas as a brand coach during her three years undergraduate studies, where she gained experience in sales, customer service and visual merchandising. During her Honours studies, she started at Consulta where she is now a Project Manager.

Jan Wegelin, Head of Research, African Response Jan has 24 years’ market research experience in quantitative and qualitative methodologies in commercial and social research, including health, education, political, FMCG, brand monitoring and tracking, investigative, and industrial research covering the manufacturing, energy, farming and service sectors in various markets in Europe, Africa and the Middle-East. Jan has worked as fieldworker, data capturer, researcher, and operations manager, and is now Head of Research. He is currently also owner of JWRC and Director at Hidden Voice. Jan chaired SAMRA Pretoria branch (2007/2008), and the Membership portfolio, and then became Treasurer and Chairman of SAMRA (2012/2013). He is a SAMRA Accredited Researcher (SAR) and won best first-time speaker at the SAMRA Annual Conference in 2014 for his co-authored paper on big data. Jan completed an introduction to economic theories with Erasmus University in the Netherlands this year and has a BA Hons (Special) Sociology from the University of Pretoria.

Sylwia Wierzbicki, Columinate Psychology Lab, Columinate Sylwia started her career as a researcher specialising in youth insights. After joining a modern insights agency, she was soon promoted to lead the Columinate Psychology Lab and innovation/product development team; her main focus is scientifically applying psychological tools to solve business problems. Sylwia is passionate about research methodology and enjoys consulting to both her clients and colleagues on research design, methodological innovations and its applications. Most recently she has been a core part of developing a brand health measurement which incorporates insights of both conscious and non-conscious processes, using innovative techniques new to the South African market. Sylwia holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology and an English teaching qualification.

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