Alumni News 2019

Taking Advantage of the Digital Economy

Alumnet

Taking Advantage of the Digital Economy

  • FEB 26 2019
  • Tags Innovus, Digital, Economy, Accommodation, Airbnb

SHARE

We are constantly being creative when it comes to commercialising Stellenbosch University’s assets. One of the biggest electronic platforms of its kind, Airbnb, will be helping us do so like never before.

Up until a few years ago, even with decent internet access, booking accommodation when traveling entailed a lot of administration. If you wanted to go on a trip, you had to visit a variety of websites or agencies, compare prices, location and availability, before you decided on the hotel that accommodated your budget.

Then the ‘electronic platform revolution’ started and with it came various companies who made our lives so much easier (and in some cases, our bank accounts emptier) – of which one example is Airbnb. Now time-strapped people (ahem, everyone?) can find almost anything online, from shopping to accommodation. On our Airbnb listings, you can find new comfortable non-hotel spaces, for a fraction of the cost, and twice the experience.

The Airbnb trial run began in September last year, as we tested the desirability of our widely-dispersed flats, houses and dormitories as viable options for visitors. It turns out there is a great demand, and as we have a number of properties that are only occupied for literally 10 months of the year, it is a demand we can meet. We are only the second university worldwide to start using Airbnb to commercialise our properties and these will soon be filled by conference attendees, tourists, international sportsmen and travellers, as they come to see what the pristine region of Stellenbosch is all about.

We hope that this platform, its ease of use and variety of offerings, is going to contribute to the 5th income stream of the University that we are tasked to grow. Check out (and then check-in) our initial offering. We are competitively priced, with super hosts which gives us a substantial advantage. Not to mention the great location of our flats.

We will be expanding this offering in the very near future. As we attract more interest to our neck of the woods, with affordable, and liveable spaces in which guests can stay so that everyone can come and enjoy what our beautiful town has to offer.

SHARE

Join the USB community

Keep up to date with the latest news, events and updates from USB

SUBSCRIBE NOW


A Focus On The USB Alumni Association East Africa Chapter

Alumnet

A Focus On The USB Alumni Association East Africa Chapter

  • FEB 26 2019
  • Tags Alumni, East Africa chapter, Alumni Association

SHARE

The East Africa (EA) chapter of the USB Alumni Association elected a new committee at their AGM in November 2018. Under the leadership of Prof. Josephat Kiweu, this chapter hosted a series of alumni-industry dialogue sessions and continuous learning events during 2017 and 2018. The new Chairperson for 2019-2020, Emma Rono, believes in the team’s capacity to move the East Africa chapter to the next level of excellence.

 

Emma Rono, is a specialist in the grants, fund and project management spaces, with strong donor/funders and university relationship, deep understanding of fund management and extensive experience in university capacity building in Sub Saharan Africa. Emma provides fund management and governance advisory services to Universities, foundations, individuals and international organizations on strategic growth and fund management. Over the last 13 years, Emma has built up extensive experience in non-profit making organisations, universities and institutional public-private partnerships. Most recently she was the  programme officer with African Economic Research Consortium (AERC) and currently involved in Academic Programmes Development for a private International University and involved in the governance of a public University in Kenya.  A member of Project Management Institute (PMI) and the Institute of Directors. Emma holds a Master of Development Finance from University of Stellenbosch Business School, South Africa and a Bachelor of Education in Accounting and Economics from University of Nairobi, Kenya in addition to other professional certificates.

Kenneth Kabue is an Mdev Finance graduate from the University of Stellenbosch. He passionately advocates for financial inclusion. Kenneth is the Co-Founder of Grassroot Financial Inclusion whose goal is to propagate and enhance financial inclusion within the informal sector. With a commendable background in the Transport industry where he has overseen the inclusion of technology in enhancing efficiency and productivity at a leading corporate transport service provider in Kenya, he is now exploring the dynamic technology transfer that is unlimited with facilitation of credit services to the larger communities.

Collins Sifuma is in charge of communication in the USB Alumni Kenya Chapter. He is an auditor with the Government of Kenya for the past 8 years. He is also a training consultant and an entrepreneur with interests in education sector and is involved in a training college in Nairobi. Collins is a USB Alumni MBA-FT 2014 class. He holds a BSc in Applied Computer Science from Daystar University, Nairobi Kenya. He is a Certified Public Accountant Finalist, a Certified Fraud Examiner and a Certified Information Systems Auditor. He loves travelling, giving motivational talks, and outdoor fun activities.

Vianney Mutyaba, completed a Master of Philosophy in Development Finance from University of Stellenbosch Business School in October 2014. He is a Member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, (ACCA – UK), and a Certified Climate and Renewable Energy Finance Expert from the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management. He currently works as a Principal Financial Analyst with the Electricity Regulatory Authority in Uganda, an institution responsible for regulating the electricity sector in Uganda including generation, transmission, sale and distribution of electric power. Specifically, he reviews and manages the Electricity Tariff Structure and Tariff Methodologies for licensees in the Electricity Supply Industry in Uganda, evaluate the financial feasibility studies undertaken and submitted by intending developers in electricity generation in Uganda and advise on the appropriate Return on Investment and the Weighted Average Cost of Capital, and establish Economic Regulation Frameworks for licensees in the Electricity Supply Industry in Uganda.

Jemima Gathumi is a development finance practitioner with a Master of Philosophy in Development Finance (Cum Laude) from the University of Stellenbosch Business School. She is a member of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) and a lawyer based in Nairobi, Kenya. Jemima has significant experience in fund management and international development consulting in sub-Saharan Africa. She has managed large development programmes as a management consultant and finance professional at KPMG, most notably The MasterCard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity and the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund.  She currently works at FSD Africa, a development finance institution set up by the UK Government to transform financial markets in sub-Saharan Africa, drive inclusive economic development and reduce poverty. At FSD Africa, Jemima manages partnerships with financial institutions in sub-Saharan Africa, to deliver financial services to unserved and underserved customer segments.

Japhet Justine completed a Masters of Philosophy in Development Finance from the University of Stellenbosch Business. He is a Managing Director of Tanzania Agricultural Development Bank (TADB). Prior to this position, he served at the same capacity at Tanzania Women’s Bank (TWB) Plc. As a proficient banker with wide experience in development finance, leading, managing and transforming retail banking at national and international levels, he has achieved a number of commendable accomplishments these include: At TWB, in first 6 months, he managed to increase deposit from TZS 12.2 billion to TZS 20.1 billion, reduced the Non-Performing Loans from 60% down to 43%, increased assets growth of 3% and increased revenue up by 56%. At BancABC, he supervised the merging and integration of BancABC Zambia and Finance in Zambia and later Merging of the Tanzania Women’s Bank with TPB Bank while at NMB Plc he was instrumental at turning around NMB Branch Performance while optimizing on the digital channels.  At TADB, in just seven (7) months, Mr. Justine has managed to increase a loan portfolio from TZS 39.3 billion to the tune of TZS 280.2 billion that impacted lives of 1,049,370 smallholder farmers from 527,280 smallholder farmers by June 30, 2018. He has managed to increase Bank’s asset growth of 129%.

SHARE

Join the USB community

Keep up to date with the latest news, events and updates from USB

SUBSCRIBE NOW


Celebrating Stellenbosch University’s Centenary with a Limited Edition Eeufees Pinotage

AlumNet

Celebrating Stellenbosch University’s Centenary with a Limited Edition Eeufees Pinotage

  • FEB 25 2019
  • Tags Centenary, Celebrate, Limited Offer, Alumni

To celebrate the 100th birthday of Stellenbosch University, Takealot, Welgevallen Cellar and Innovus are launching a very special, limited edition Pinotage, available exclusively online.

Due to the prowess of her researchers, the quality of her faculties and the richness of her location, Stellenbosch University produces some remarkable things (other than her alumni). There are products like bespoke jewellery, Maties Milk, sports paraphernalia and plants from the botanical gardens and, most notably, the wonderful wine our region is so famous for.

But, up until now the only way to get your hands on any of them was to do so physically. While there are outlets us locals can buy our things from, there are large numbers of tourists, alumni and connoisseurs of fine things who aren’t nearby, and cannot. The closest they can get to the items they desire is the empty bottle on their mantlepiece, the photos they took when they were here or a small image on the website. There is a lot of demand for our products, without the means for the supply to fulfil it.

Takealot.com, everyone’s favourite online retail store and delivery wizards, will now be solving this problem for all of us. As of 15th November, we’ll be piloting this new online solution with the release of a very special product, which is brand new, but has its roots firmly planted in Stellenbosch soil.

To commemorate the centenary year of Stellenbosch University, the team has released a very special, limited edition of the Welgevallen Cellar’s Pinotage, available exclusively on Takelot.com. Called, rather logically, ‘Eeufees Pinotage’.

It will be a limited edition of around 2,000 bottles, with each bottle individually numbered. The beautiful packaging, which will brighten up any dinner party, Sunday evening or private cellar, only hints at the absolute perfection of the wine itself.

Buy your limited edition Eeufees Pinotage now:
http://bit.ly/eeufees-takealot 

SHARE

Find the perfect course for you

Join the USB community

Keep up to date with the latest news, events and updates from USB

SUBSCRIBE NOW


Back to reality: A post-MBA reflection

AlumNet

Back to reality: A post-MBA reflection

  • FEB 25 2019
  • Tags MBA, alumnus, journey, leadership

By Poonam Harry-Nana

Exactly one year ago this time, I remember questioning almost every day why I had made the crazy decision to give up my life, career and any sense of normalcy and saneness by embarking on the journey of doing my Full-time MBA at USB. From 18-hour days on campus, juggling between lectures, readings, quizzes, assignments and assessments, barely even finding the time to eat yet alone sleep, the MBA started with a bang that left one feeling completely helpless.

“It’ll get easier,” they said. “It will all be worth it,” others said. “What you put in is what you get out.” And so, I listened, and immersed myself fully into the experiences that came our way – not without reasoning, questioning and voicing concerns of course. One year on however, having just received all my grades and having come out successfully on the other side passing all 20 of my modules, I can honestly say, that they were right; or at least mostly right!

“It’ll get easier,” they said. “It will all be worth it,” others said. “What you put in is what you get out.”

Today, I find myself not only looking back on these last 12 months with fondness and pride, but realising that they have become a part of my life journey that truly defined who I am, who I have become, and still have the ability to become.

The MBA experience made me realise that I can do anything. It made me realise that any goal no matter how big or small is not only doable, but achievable if taken on with the right mindset, heart, attitude and the ability to be strategic about the choices one makes. Having a clear vision for wanting to do an MBA – which was to discover the true Poonam and elevate my mindset to a new level as well as wanting to build relationships – meant that I charged head on into the adventure with a clear purpose and drive. This single notion, sustained me through those tough times and taught me the value of focus mixed with balance.

“The MBA experience made me realise that I can do anything.”

Now I find myself back in my hometown of East London, back in the same company that I left prior to my life journey quests; yet a completely changed, renewed, rejuvenated and confident individual. I feel ready to tackle any challenge that comes my way head on, yet still with a hint of caution, fear and anxiety that makes the next part of my journey exciting and enthralling.

My family business, the Harry’s Printers Group now sees itself entering its 90th year of existence with over 200 employees spanning over five locations across South Africa. I am in the fortunate position to be managing one of our companies, Harry’s Photos and Copies, which is in the process of opening its first one-of-a-kind retail customer experience store that aims to target consumers in the print and imaging industries through a range of innovative products and solutions. With a vision for expansion of branches across the country, I know I am coped with the leadership capability to drive such an initiative, thanks mostly to my experiences in the full-time MBA class. From the leadership journey to the learnings, teachings and interactions with classmates and faculty, I truly feel ready and prepared for the challenges and adventures that lie ahead, and encourage other alumni to do the same. Embrace the journey, and remember, if you cannot find the sunshine, BE the sunshine.

SHARE

Find the perfect course for you

Join the USB community

Keep up to date with the latest news, events and updates from USB

SUBSCRIBE NOW