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The Mondelez Rising Star of the Year Jared Patel, head of marketing at Sea Harvest Group. Picture: Supplied
The Mondelez Rising Star of the Year Jared Patel, head of marketing at Sea Harvest Group. Picture: Supplied

The Discovery group was the big winner at the 2022 Marketing Achievement Awards (MAA). CMO Firoze Bhorat was awarded the title of this year’s Marketer of the Year while the Discovery group won the Marketing Organisation of the Year Award. Jared Patel, head of marketing at the Sea Harvest group, won the Rising Star of the Year Award.

The MAAs  – presented by the SABC and endorsed by the Marketing Association of SA – celebrate analytical and creative marketing that has had a demonstrable impact on business.

Ivan Moroke, CEO of Kantar’s Insights division SA, lead inclusion and diversity Kantar EMEA and current chair of the MAAs, said all three winners of the MAA leadership awards demonstrated impeccable application of marketing as a strategic craft. “The judges were very clear that the winners had to consistently show the potential of strategic marketing to catalyse business growth. These awards are an opportunity to prove, with empirical evidence, the positive impact of marketing and brand building as a critical commercial tool of growth.”

The Marketer of the Year Award was a fiercely contested nominated award category. Prof Doug Mattheus, adjunct professor of marketing at the Nelson Mandela University and chair of the Marketer of the Year selection committee, said all the finalists embraced this year’s MAA theme, “marketing that means business”, showing their understanding of the strategic link between marketing and business results.

MMA Marketer of the Year Firoze Bhorat, chief marketing officer of Discovery Group. Picture: Supplied
MMA Marketer of the Year Firoze Bhorat, chief marketing officer of Discovery Group. Picture: Supplied

“[Bhorat] embodies all these attributes … and more. His influence, value and presence are immense as he leads a large, centrally controlled marketing team in a giant organisation, where each division is a business on its own that competes against other established companies in highly traded sectors. As an exco member, he does justice to the profession in all its aspects, from his digital-first view to the detailed customer understanding he employs across all channels, creating shared value, promoting diversity and building the brand and culture, while showing excellent business results,” explained Mattheus.

The Marketing Organisation of the Year Award celebrates the organisation that has most clearly demonstrates how its business, brand and marketing strategy are closely aligned and executed to drive sustained returns. Entrants had to show how their marketing initiatives related to sustained performance towards the triple bottom line over a three-year period.

“This is one of the industry’s most meaningful awards, because it interrogates companies from a holistic perspective,” said Haydn Townsend, MAA council member and an MD at Accenture Song,   sponsor of the MAA Marketing Organisation of the Year Award. “The award delves into what it takes to be an organisation that embraces the entire brand experience and remains relevant doing it. This award is not only important for the recognition it bestows on the winner, but, as an example of best practice, also a future learning tool from which the whole industry can benefit.”

The Accenture Song Marketing Organisation of the Year winners. Picture: Supplied
The Accenture Song Marketing Organisation of the Year winners. Picture: Supplied

The Rising Star of the Year Award celebrates the best young marketer under the age of 35 who shows their potential to become an outstanding industry leader through impactful, analytical and creative marketing efforts.

Thembi Butelezi, equity & marketing strategy lead at Mondelēz Sub-Saharan Africa – the sponsors of this award – emphasised the importance of young marketers being able to leverage a balanced skill set, especially in a volatile operating climate.

“The current business and marketing landscape is constantly evolving. This is complicated further by a highly competitive environment. The most successful marketers, like Patel, are those who leverage a diverse and commercially minded skill set to encourage transformation through thinking holistically about growth. This not only supports strategic growth now, but future-proofs their organisations in the long term,” said Butelezi.

The 2022 Marketing Achievement Award winners are:

The Excellence in Reputation Management Award was not awarded.  While there was some good work entered into this category, the MAA judges were of the opinion that submissions entered this year were not of a standard required to win a Marketing Achievement Award.

The big take-out:

SA’s top marketers celebrated at the Marketing Achievement Awards, which recognise analytical and creative marketing that has had a demonstrable impact on business.

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