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5 influential South African business women that inspire us daily

South Africa's vibrant entrepreneurial landscape is illuminated by the remarkable achievements of numerous inspiring women.

Jodi Sher
Jodi Sher
August 1, 2023

South Africa's vibrant entrepreneurial landscape is illuminated by the remarkable achievements of numerous inspiring women. These trailblazers have defied all odds, emerging as leaders in their respective industries while contributing significantly to their communities and the nation's economic growth. In this article, we celebrate a few leading female entrepreneurs in South Africa who have made indelible marks with their innovation, resilience, and passion for success.

Dr Judy Dlamini

Dr Judy Dlamini - Pioneering the Healthcare Industry

“Our ecosystem as women is very important, I couldn’t have achieved what I have without the support of those around me”

Dr. Judy Dlamini is a true embodiment of determination and excellence. As the founder of the Mbekani Group, she has revolutionised the healthcare industry in South Africa. Dr. Dlamini's expertise and vision have led to the establishment of several healthcare facilities, providing accessible and quality healthcare to underserved communities. Furthermore, she actively promotes gender empowerment and education, inspiring countless aspiring entrepreneurs to dream big. She is currently a chancellor at Wits University.

Basetsana Kumalo  

Basetsana Khumalo - Empowering Women and Media Maven

“When you wake up each morning, you have to think of yourself as a brand and act accordingly. If you live the brand well, people start to believe in it and buy into it.”

Basetsana Kumalo, fondly known as Bassie, is a formidable force in South Africa's media and business landscape. As the founder of Basetsana Woman Investment Holdings, she is a passionate advocate for women's empowerment, providing mentorship, support, and investment opportunities to female entrepreneurs. Her contributions extend to the media industry, where she has excelled as a renowned television presenter and producer, inspiring generations of women to chase their dreams fearlessly.

Dineo Lioma

Dineo Lioma - Innovating in Biotechnology

“Benchmark products against the best in the market.”

Dineo Lioma, founder of CapeBio Technologies, is at the forefront of biotechnology innovation in South Africa. Her company focuses on developing sustainable and bio-based solutions for various industries. Lioma's groundbreaking work contributes to advancements in healthcare, agriculture, and environmental sustainability. She is currently enjoying her newest venture, Deep Medical Therapeutics, a company dedicated to becoming Africa’s largest repository of health data.

Dr Precious Moloi-Motsepe  

Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe - Shaping the Fashion and Philanthropic Sectors

“The best investment you can make for yourself or your child is some kind of post-school education or training”

Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe, an esteemed businesswoman and philanthropist, has made an indelible mark on South Africa's fashion industry. As the founder of African Fashion International, she has created platforms to showcase and uplift African designers, placing them on the global stage. Dr. Moloi-Motsepe's entrepreneurial pursuits are also fueled by her philanthropic endeavours, notably through the Motsepe Foundation, which focuses on education, healthcare, and empowerment initiatives across the country.

Phuti Mahanyele-Dabengwa

Phuti Mahanyele-Dabengwa - Energising the Energy Sector

“Despite what anyone might do or say, if you focus on achieving the purpose that is in your heart, you can achieve almost anything.”

Phuti Mahanyele-Dabengwa has established herself as a prominent figure in South Africa's energy sector. As the CEO of Naspers South Africa, she has spearheaded investments in renewable energy and championed sustainable development initiatives. Phuti's dedication to promoting clean energy solutions and her relentless pursuit of excellence have solidified her position as a trailblazing female entrepreneur, inspiring others to contribute to the country's sustainable future.

These leading businesswomen are shining examples of the transformative power of entrepreneurship. Their innovative spirits, resilience, and unwavering determination have not only propelled their own success but also created opportunities for others to thrive. As we celebrate these remarkable women, let us be inspired by their journeys and continue to support and empower female entrepreneurs, fostering an inclusive and prosperous South Africa for all.