Digital & Interactive



Markus Maczey
Chief Creative Director
Planet.Net Group
Munchen, Germany

*Also on Craft Panel

Markus Maczey is a 1976 born bavarian creative director.

After more than 10 years as a designer and art director in traditional advertising agencies like Jung von Matt and .start, he started 2008 at the Serviceplan Group as an executive digital creative director. In 2016 he was named CCO of the Plan.Net Group and oversees the creative output of the national and international offices. His work has been recognised at Cannes Lions, D&AD, LIAA, Eurobest, Webby and much more.



Martin Karanja Kiarie
Chief Executive Officer
Bean Interactive
Nairobi, Kenya

Everyone has that one thing that drives them and for Martin Karanja Kiare, that one thing is family. He is not only a father of two but has also created a family culture at his own organization. His motto in life is that “We have everything it takes to get everything we want and you have to disrupt yourself if you want to disrupt your environment”

With this in mind, after graduating with first-class honors from the University of West of England with a Bachelor Degree in Computing and Information Systems, he founded Bluetooth Enabled Advertising Networks, or simply Bean, in 2009.

With a strong disruption ethos and family culture, the company has grown to become Kenya’s largest independent digital agency.

He was recognized among the Top 40 under 40 men in Kenya and Bean Interactive recently received a platinum award at the AVA Digital Awards.


Ryan MacManus
Executive Creative Director
Native VML
Cape Town, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel 

Under Ryan’s leadership as National Executive Creative Director, NATIVE VML has experienced phenomenal growth and climbed the creative rankings - winning multiple golds at Cannes, Loeries, Bookmarks, One Show, D&AD, NYF as well as the coveted Best Agency at Bookmarks, twice in 3 years. 

Ryan brings a wealth of global experience and clear purpose into his work, having traveled and worked across some of the world’s top agencies and creative shops. Ryan has spoken at Cannes Lions, Adobe, conferences and graduations and had the privilege of judging Cannes YDA, Loeries, Bookmarks, New York Festival, AdPrint, and ADC. Ryan was listed in Mail & Guardians top 200 South Africans 2014, and The Media Magazine’s Top 40 under 40 for 2015.


Matthew Barnes
Executive Creative Director
Gloo Johannesburg and Team Red
Johannesburg, South Africa

Born in South Africa in 1976, possible careers in the air force, aeronautical engineering and photography were abandoned in favour of sailing the world and becoming a man, albeit a skinny one. The Royal Navy ultimately lost to the Red and Yellow School of Advertising in Cape Town.

Matthew has done time in the trenches at Ogilvy and Mather, Red Nail, Brand Activation 141, Network BBDO, TBWA, the Jupiter Drawing Room Johannesburg and Publicis / Leo Burnett with freelance and failed startups in between. He has been ECD at Gloo since 2015 and Team Red since 2016.

When Matthew first joined Ogilvy as a Junior Copywriter in 2000, he was following in the footsteps of his father who had also worked for Ogilvy, and says he was first attracted to the industry by the ad reels his dad brought home; “those and the Jasper Carrot Show and the Benetton work of the 80s”.

Matthew is obsessed with great writing, film and working on old Porsches.


Veli Ngubane
Founding Partner & Chief Creative Officer 
Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Veli Ngubane is Founding Partner and Chief Creative Officer at AVATAR. Hailing from Manguzi in rural KwaZulu-Natal, he entered the world of advertising after completing his BSocSci (Politics, Economics & Law) at the University of Cape Town and a postgraduate Marketing & Advertising diploma at the Red & Yellow School, where he currently serves as advisory board chairman. He has built the award winning integrated agency from start-up to a leading agency in the country and the rest of the continent, working with leading brands across Africa, He has a passion for entrepreneurship and transformation within the advertising industry and has built the largest black-owned agency in South Africa, which received the Financial Mail AdFocus award for Medium Advertising Agency of the Year in 2016. He was also nominated as Mail & Guardians Top 200 Youth of 2017 in the business category.  


Matt Ross
Executive Creative Director
King James
Cape Town, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Matt's passion for original, ground-breaking ideas and technologies have taken him across the globe to create multi award-winning digital and integrated creative campaigns and products for numerous clients including Nike, Volkswagen, Honda, PlayStation, Hasbro, Guinness, and Coca-Cola. 

Currently, he is Group Executive Creative Director of King James and Creative Founder of Punk, the digital arm of King James Group.

Prior to returning to South Africa, Matt spent 15 years working in London and New York, where he was most recently the Group Executive Creative Director of DDB UK and Executive Creative Director of Tribal DDB, working with clients including Volkswagen, Hasbro, Guinness, Budweiser, KLM and Financial Times. In his tenure, the DDB Group topped the Gunn Report and Tribal DDB were the #1 ranked digital agency by the IAB. Prior to that he worked at TBWA, AQKA and JWT, as well as founded and sold his own small agency, Dean & Dickinson.

He has been named as one of Advertising Age’s Creativity 50, the annual global list of the most influential and inspiring creative personalities and has won numerous awards including gold at Cannes, Clios, One Show and D&AD.

He has no pets (unless you count the thing that lives in the corner of the lounge), thinks Kubrick and Einstein were brother geniuses and loves nowhere more to be on earth than in the Green Room.


Kerry Friend
Bear Season
Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel 

Kerry Friend is currently part of Bear Season, special projects tech-led studio, made up of a mix of unique skill sets who aim to dissolve the gap between ideas and production. The team is made up of an advertising creative, digital artist and two Mechatronics engineers who specialise in custom software and hardware fabrication. Kerry has 18 years experience in advertising. Starting out as a copywriter at FCB, TBWA Hunt Lascaris and then Ogilvy. Then as Creative Director at Grey and DDB. Kerry’s work took on a more interactive and digital slant as Executive Creative Director at Hellocomputer and then Isobar, where she also headed up the innovation lab, NowLab.

Her natural interest in innovation and technology lead to her working closely with the Digital Innovation Precinct run by Wits University where she has been hosting workshops, hackerthons and design sprints for ad agencies and clients such as WildAid, Microsoft, The Dept of Public Service and Administration and The Department of Water and Sanitation. Bear Season is currently running a series of ‘internet of things’ workshops and boot camps with The Technology Innovation Agency at Tshimologong under the auspices of Prof Dwolatzky.

Along with her team, she has also hosted tech-led cultural programmes for the African Digital Innovation Festival, Fak’ugesi, The most successful being “Future Sounds of Music”, which was an original collaboration with the director and social commentator, Lebo Rasethaba.

Kerry takes an experimental and collaborative approach to projects and is always exploring new ways of thinking, working and making.


Steph Van Niekerk
Senior Copywriter
Freelance - Ogilvy & Mather
Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Steph is best described as a truly integrated creative. Over the last 16 years, she’s honed her skills as a copywriter at some of South Africa’s best ATL agencies. Known for insightful work that moves and engages people, she’s won nearly every local and international award, including a few Cannes Lions and SA’s first Gold One Show Pencil for TV and Cinema.

Believing that it was the best way to learn, she made the decision to dive head-first into the deep end of digital as Creative Director at  SA’s largest digital agency network, where she headed up the McDonald’s account.

Armed with the digital experience, she's crossed back to the traditional agency space and pursues truly integrated work. She believes that great stories are platform agnostic and that the idea is still king.


Kabelo Moshapalo
Executive Creative Director
TBWA/Hunt Lascaris
Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Kabelo is a self-taught illustrator who traded his acrylic paints and brushes for the digital canvas.

He began his career at FCB Electric Ocean in 2000, becoming Group Head Digital Interactive in 2005 and Creative Director in 2007. He gained valuable experience working on global brands and building local success in the digital world for brands such as Toyota, Vodacom, Emirates, Kraft Foods, Samsung, and Caltex. 

Prior to being made Executive Creative Director and being appointed to the board of TBWA\Digital Arts Network, he was ECD at TBWA\Tequila, where he gained valuable experience working on global brands such as Standard Bank, McDonald’s and Nissan.

His role in the development of creative digital solutions has been widely recognised throughout South Africa. In 2015, Kabelo was featured in Destiny Man magazine’s Power of 40 List, which celebrates extraordinary men from all over South Africa under the age of 40.

He was one of the 2003 judges of the Loeries Awards in the new emerging digital category – an honour repeated in 2004, and from 2007 to 2014. In 2015, he set on two different panels of the Loeries Awards, namely Non-English Radio, and Communication Design. He’s also adjudicated the Apex Awards, where he was tasked with appraising both creativity and effectiveness, measuring actual marketing campaign results.

Driving creative excellence on the continent, Kabelo was appointed to the judging panel of the inaugural advertising and communications awards launched by Botswana's Association of Communication Agencies (ACA) in 2013.

The same year he also sat on the judging panel of the IAB South Africa Bookmarks awards, a show that celebrates digital marketing excellence - an honour repeated in 2016 and 2017. In continuing to celebrate excellence in all things digital, Kabelo was appointed as a jury member on the CLIO awards 2016 Digital Mobile panel.


Joey Khuvutlu
Managing Director
Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Joey is a creative industry entrepreneur and a believer in the power of design thinking and collaboration to affect positive change in society and business. 

With over 13 years experience in brand design & brand technology, Joey has successfully founded and led three boutique agencies. In 2017 Joey joined Hellocomputer as managing director of the Johannesburg office after the acquisition of his agency, Threefold Creative — a digital production agency that developed award winning experiential and marketing technology for brands such as KFC as well as digital platforms for international organizations such as Virgin Unite, the African Leadership Institute and the 2014 C40 Cities Summit. 

A creative a heart, Joey holds a BA in Communications Management, specializing in creative direction, from the Vega Brand Communications School.


Gareth McPherson
Group Executive Creative Director
Publicis Machine
Cape Town, South Africa

Today, Gareth has the pleasure of overseeing and steering the creativity of Publicis Machine South Africa, a 280-people strong integrated agency and home to some of the worlds best brands. Having started in the industry 16 years ago as an Art Director, he has had many career highlights, including successful creative campaigns for Volkswagen, Nestle, SABMiller and iconic culture brands such as Marmite, Red Bull, and Adidas. His work has been awarded at Cannes, One Show, D&AD, Clios, London International and South Africa’s prestigious award shows, The Loeries & Bookmarks.

He has chaired and judged at various creative award festivals and is a member of the IAB, South African Creative Circle, and the Publicis Worldwide Creative Ring. Passionate about the development of the industry and the potential of talent across the African continent, he mentors and speaks on ‘Leadership’ at various workshops and institutions. He contributes to the Red & Yellow Springboard Leadership Programme, a course that helps attract underprivileged talent to the industry through mentorship. He is a member of the Vega School of Brand Leadership Advisory Council where he inputs on course curriculum and skills development. Having one ‘work' foot in Johannesburg and the other in Cape Town, Gareth calls the beautiful city of Cape Town home, where he lives with his wife and two kids.


Roanna Williams
Executive Creative Director
Joe Public

Johannesburg, South Africa

*Also on Craft Panel

Roanna Williams strongly believes that creativity has the power to change people’s minds and impact their decisions for the good of the world. With 21 years experience, after working for some of South Africa’s best agencies, she now resides with Joe Public United, South Africa’s largest independent advertising group as Executive Creative Director. She is instrumental in driving the creative output for clients such as Nedbank, Clover, Adcock Ingrams, iWyze, Chicken Licken and McCain.

She has won numerous local and international awards, including Loeries, Cannes Lions, Apex’s, One Show Pencils and D&AD’s and has served on numerous Loeries and Creative Circle panels and was a direct judge at Cannes Lions this year. She is also the curator, co-editor, designer, and publisher of Migrate magazine. In between thinking of ideas, publishing a magazine and running a very busy family life, Roanna has competed in the Argus and 94.7 cycle races thirteen times each. Inspired by being a woman in today’s world, she is also very passionate about the participation, growth, and advancement of women in the advertising industry in South Africa. #godowhatyoucant




Jacqui Maroun
Head: User Experience Design & Strategy
Native VML
Johannesburg, South Africa

Jacqui leads Strategy and UX at NATIVE VML to power strategic interventions with human-centred design thinking. She believes that putting customers at the centre of your business and your brand is the most strategic move you can make. Memorable, useful and transformative customer experiences are the result. Jacqui has a long history in digital agencies from VWV days to Cambrient and, along with all NATIVES, is passionate about creating purpose-driven work that lives in peoples’ lives. 


Agisanang Masekela
Creative Director
Ogilvy & Mather
Johannesburg, South Africa

Agi graduated top 3 in his class from UJ where he studied Multimedia. After a stint freelancing, lecturing and creating apps in his spare time – he decided to go full force into the world they call advertising. 

After just 7 years in the industry, he has had the privilege of working on brands such as MultiChoice, Vodacom, MTV, BMW, SAT & Castle Lite to name a few. He is currently a Creative Director at Gloo@Ogilvy in Johannesburg and has been the recipient of numerous awards at prestigious ceremonies such as One Show, D&AD, Loeries, Assegais, and Bookmarks. 

A deep lover of all things digital – you can always find him trying to stretch the boundaries of storytelling with unconventional mediums. 

Alicia Nicola
Creative Group Head: Digital
Publicis Machine
Cape Town, South Africa

Alicia comes from a fine art background and has had the opportunity to work both within a corporate as an in-house designer, and in advertising as an art director and designer. Alicia’s advertising career started in 2014 when she joined Publicis Machine as a digital designer. Within her short advertising career, Alicia has worked on some amazing and award-winning campaigns for Red Bull. Including receiving a Silver Loerie in the Live Events category and a Craft Certificate in the Live Crafts category for her Doodle Art Campaign in 2015. She was also ranked in the top 10 Art Directors/Stylists in Africa in 2015. Alicia’s strengths lie in conceptual thinking and idea generation, as well as having a clean and simple design aesthetic. Alicia has an interest in all things digital. She enjoys experimenting with new technologies, as well as using existing technologies in new and innovative ways.


Helga Steggman
Johannesburg, South Africa

Helga is a User Experience consultant that has worked in the industry since 1999. She started Mantaray, a User Experience agency in 2006 in South Africa and has been involved with creating innovative products and services for the African market. 

Her focus is in the digital environment understanding customers and assisting clients in developing products and services that are innovative in meeting business objectives and answering customer needs. She works from the initial strategy level through to final implementation of the digital product or service. Mantaray is the African partner of the UX Alliance which consists of 26 UX agencies worldwide that collaborate on global clients in meeting UX research and design demands. Helga is currently the elected COO of the UXalliance ensuring the strategic objectives are met of the partnership.


Brian Carter
Executive Creative Director
Cape Town, South Africa

Brian Carter is the Executive Creative Director at Liquorice, a DigitasLBi company. As the man at the helm of the creative department of Liquorice, he is responsible for the innovative work produced across Africa for the digital network. Brian has swooped up numerous awards and international recognition, acting as tributes to his innovative ideas and expertise in the field.

With over 10 years experience in various design disciplines, Brian oversees every project that enters the agency. He is the brain behind many of South Africa’s most ground-breaking digital campaigns. Pepsi, Adidas, Sanlam, SAB, numerous Distell labels and Unilever’s top products are just a few of the brands that have seen great results from his original thinking.


Karmen Wessels
Native VML
Cape Town, South Africa

Karmen has been with NATIVE VML for almost 4 years, working her way up from over-enthusiastic intern to the coveted position of over-enthusiastic copywriter on brands like Absolut, Metropolitan, DARG, Red Bull, BMW and Netwerk24. She’s won awards, almost won awards, dreamed about winning awards and once published a poem about the life and death of a banana. For info about Karmen’s past lives as a student director, Drag Queen doodler and amateur sleuth, give her a Google.


Frank Kunene
Creative Director

TBWA Digital
Johannesburg, South Africa

After 20 years in the advertising, Frank is now eligible for veteran benefits. He is a graduate of both the AAA and Vega School of brand communication as well holding Diploma’s in business administration from KP College, and during a brief stint of sobriety, Certificates in Marketing and Strategy from the Gordon School of Business Science. Combining creative insights with a business acumen Frank brings a fresh perspective in solving business challenges with a creative outlook.

A true advertising practitioner Frank has plugged his talents into some of the best agencies in the world, based in Johannesburg; including Jupiter Drawing Room, FCB JHB (See? I told you.)

Over the course of his travels, he has collected some nice and shiny things from the likes of the Loeries, Pendoring, and of course Woolies and @home. 


Phillipa Hickman
Senior Java Developer & Medallion Code Team Lead
Native VML
Johannesburg, South Africa

Phillipa started using computers when her i386 could still boot up DOS from a floppy disk and the screens were monochrome. She zipped her high school programming projects across multiple stiffy disks and played minesweeper on Windows 3.1. To date, she has been coding for more than 20 years, spending the last 9 years working for Native VML (previously Cambrient). Phillipa currently leads the Native VML Cape Town Code Team, which works on accounts such as Absolut, Chivas, Jameson, TFG and WCED.


Nathan Gates
Creative Technologist
Bear Season
Johannesburg, South Africa

After receiving a Masters Degree in Interactive Media Nathan began working as a creative technologist within the industry. He later joined hellocomputer full time as their creative technologist working on new media campaigns such as “BG the Tweeting Badger”. As well as running hackathons alongside then ECD Kerry Friend to produce events such as the “Labello Electric Kiss”. Upon receiving the opportunity to lecture at the University of The Witwatersrand in the Digital Arts he went freelance to accommodate collaborations with the likes of Yuri Suzuki, onedotzero and The Fakugesi Festival. Earlier this year alongside his frequent collaborators he began the ‘Bear Season’ collective and special projects studio.