The grand finale of the KwaZulu-Natal Top Business Women 2022 powered by DRG and
BusinessFit SA took place on 17 November at the Coastlands uMhlanga Hotel and
The glamorous gala evening celebrated the achievements of some of the phenomenal
women in KwaZulu-Natal who were nominated by employers, employees, clients, or other
To obtain the stories that formed the basis for the proceedings, the KZN Top Business team
interviewed all the women who participated on camera and in three webinars, which were
held in the build up to the event. The webinars were facilitated by guest speaker Zanele
Luvuno, who is passionate about promoting the future of female leaders.
The participating women shared many of their ups and downs; their wins and their losses. All
of the women have incredible insights to offer, which showcase the individual and universal
strengths they have been able to draw upon.
David White, CEO of DRG and BusinessFIt, and key sponsor said, “We have been delighted
to play a small role in this incredible initiative. Listen to the women’s stories and sharing in
their passion and their purpose has been very exciting.”
At the function, six of the women were asked to share aspects of their journeys on stage by
host for the evening, East Coast Radio presenter Carol Ofori. These selected women were
recognised in the following categories:
The courage to realise a dream – Dr Lungile Mhlongo, founder and CEO Numa
Exceeding customer expectations and delivering brilliant experiences – Samantha
Croft, director of operations for Southern Sun for the KZN region
Operating effectively and productively – Nondumiso Mthwa, founder and CEO Idwala
Fostering a culture of empowerment and diversity – Jasmeena Shiba, director Royal
Making a difference in the business and community – Carol Coetzee head of
department for KwaZulu-Natal Provisional Treasury
A woman extraordinaire: Given to a businessperson who has demonstrated
exemplary business achievement, industry influence and is a true inspiration to
others – Benita Ardenbaum, founder and director Benita Ardenbaum Attorneys
Special recognition was given to Cherry Armstrong, the director and founder of Celebrate
Life SA. The organisation makes a tangible difference in the lives of rural communities by
empowering women who previously felt hopeless and helpless, feeding children who haven’t
had a solid meal, and implementing projects that are sustainable and uplifting. In particular,
the Ubuntu Micro Bakery Project is a national project that changes the lives of hundreds of
women for the better, every year.
Grant Adlam, CEO KZN Top Business, said, “Our theme this year was ‘Women of Influence’.
Our team has been humbled by the many amazing women whose stories we have heard.
These stories are about women, from many different backgrounds, who have had varied
journeys to get to where they are today and have much wisdom to offer. It is hoped that this
initiative and the recognition afforded to all participants will inspire other women to strive to
achieve more in their own endeavours.”