Private Business Growth Award Ceremony and Gala Dinner

Following months of preparation for what promises to be a continental campaign in the near future, Grant Thornton Botswana hosted its first annual Private Business Growth Award Ceremony on Wednesday the 28th of October 2015.

The ceremony and gala dinner was hosted at the Gaborone International Convention Centre (GICC) situated in Peermont’s “The Grand Palm Resort”, Botswana’s world class award winning conference centre. Prior to the formal programme of the evening, guests enjoyed Maru-a-Pula Marimba choir’s energetic performance and a drink in the conference centre’s foyer. The programme kick-started at 7:30 pm as the Emcees of the evening, Aswin Vaidyanathan and Sakshi Shukla, welcomed the guests and set the tone for a memorable evening.

Managing Partner of Grant Thornton Botswana Jay Ramesh gave the welcome remarks,highlighting how the Private Business Growth Award transpired to be a collaboration between the firm and Business Botswana (formerly known as the Botswana Confederation of Commerce, Industry and Manpower BOCCIM). He further spoke about the Private Business Growth Award, themotive behind the introduction of the award, eligibility criteria and selection process.

This was followed by an address by the President of Business Botswana, Leta Mosinyane who highlighted the long standing relationship between Grant Thornton and Business Botswana and why they deemed the collaboration to be one in line with the organization’s core mandate and vision. This was followed by an address by the Key Note Speaker of the evening – Honourable Dr. P. H. K. Kedikilwe, the immediate past Vice President of the Republic of Botswana. His address gave an analysis of the importance of each of Grant Thornton’s selection criteria, and highlighted the significance and impact of the award on the national economy.

Following the Key Note address, the Judges were facilitated for their hard work and contribution. This year’s judges were:

  • Steven Bogatsu - CEO, First National Bank
  • Daniel Neo Moroka - Director, De Beers
  • John Mynhardt - Chairman, Cash Bazaar Holdings
  • Hiran Mendis - CEO, Botswana Stock Exchange
  • Duncan Majinda - CEO, Botswana Accountancy Oversight Authority
  • Ananth Ram - Pro Vice Chancellor, Botho University
  • Maria Machailo-Ellis - CEO, Business Botswana
  • Jay Ramesh - Managing Partner, Grant Thornton Botswana

Next, the finalists were introduced by Anthony Quashie (Partner, Grant Thornton Botswana), andpresented with finalist awards by Gernot Hebestreit (Global Leader of Business Development and Markets, Grant Thornton International) and Vijay Kalyanaraman (Partner, Grant Thornton Botswana). Following their introduction and facilitation, a 3 minute pre-recorded video of each of the finalists was screened to highlight their success story, and how the Private Business Growth Award has influenced their future growth plan. This was a new and unique introduction in Botswana that was received with enthusiasm and appreciation for the high output presentation by Grant Thornton.

Grant Thornton Botswana


Manufacturer of unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) pipes, High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes and Rotomoulded products.


Sprint Couriers

Courier service company that offers Domestic (Sprint,Same day, Budget services), International (Documents, Parcels services), Freight and Value Added (e.g. insurance, packaging, timeous deliveries, etc) services.


Gabs Bedding

Manufacturer of spring mattresses and base sets, houseware, lounge suites, couches and Ottomans.


Jamal Trading Company

A leading building material supplier, from base construction material to high end finishings.


Security Systems

Security company that provides guard services, CCTV monitoring services, tracking and apprehension, undercover operations, safes and locks, smoke boxes and cash transit services.

Following the announcement and facilitation of finalists, the winner was announced by Dr PKH Kedikilwe and Jay Ramesh – Sprint Couriers. The evening came to a close with a vote of thanks by Pushpa Ramesh (Principal, Grant Thornton) and dinner.

The evening was well attended by the media, representative of regulatory bodies such as BICA, ACCA, BAOA, etc, as well as Grant Thornton representatives from all over Africa. Key member firm guests included:

  • Gernot Hebestreit - Global Leader of Business Development and Markets, and African member firm Development, Grant Thornton International
  • Deepak Nagar – Managing Partner, Grant Thornton Durban South Africa, and Chairman, National Executive Committee, Grant Thornton South Africa
  • Johan Blignaut – Managing Partner, Grant Thornton Pretoria South Africa
  • Kamal Shah – Managing Partner, Grant Thornton Kenya
  • Alice Mafanuke – Partner, Grant Thornton Zimbabwe
  • Tinashe Chirume – Partner, Grant Thornton Zimbabwe
  • Nico Olwagen - Africa Member Firm Development Regional senior manager, Grant Thornton International
  • James Howatt - Information Technology Regional Manager, Grant Thornton International

All in all it was a successful evening that blossomed as a result of months of hard work put in by Grant Thornton Botswana. The feedback received so far has been phenomenal and the team now looks forward to assisting other firms in Africa to introduce the Private Business Growth Award in their respective countries.