Our local leadership
Our South African leadership team biographies provide additional details about our key personnel across Unilever South Africa.
Executive Vice President, Unilever South Africa
Luc-Olivier Marquet, Executive Vice President of Unilever South Africa has 23 years' experience in the FMCG industry, most of which was spent in developing and emerging markets.
He worked for the L’Oreal group in Europe, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Miami and the Philippines until 2013 as well and led as the President and Managing Director of L’Oreal in the Philippines.
His background includes working in Marketing (Brand Building and Brand Development), before moving to Customer Development as a Key Account Manager, then into Travel Retail (Europe and Americas). He has 10 years' experience as a Country Managing Director with L’Oreal.
He joined Unilever in August 2013 as Vice President for Unilever West Africa and Vice Chairman for the Board of Unilever Ghana Limited.
He was Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Unilever Cote D’Ivoire. In that role he was responsible for developing Unilever business in the 13 countries west of Nigeria, which includes 3 operating companies (Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, and Niger) and representation offices.
Director Foods & Tea, Southern Africa
As a member of the Unilever South Africa board, and the Director of Foods & Teas, Antony is a seasoned professional with a wealth of experience under his belt.
While Antony has been part of the Unilever team for many years, his career path also includes a stint as Marketing Executive at MassMart (Game, DionWired, FoodCo), as well as Marketing Director Personal Care at Indigo Brands (Yardley, Lentheric, Coty).
Antony has a Bachelor of Commerce, Marketing & Finance from the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
While currently living in Durban, Antony has had the pleasure of living in Cape Town, as well as London and Los Angeles.
Media Director, Africa
As CCM Director for Unilever Africa, Enver Groenewald leads the Media strategy, planning and buying functions for Unilever’s sub-Saharan markets. In this capacity, Enver also serves on the boards of the AAA School of Advertising and Mobile Marketing Association.
Prior to joining Unilever, he held a number of executive management roles including that of CEO for Interbrand Southern Africa; GM at Times Media Group; CEO of Ochre Media;
Business Director at Ogilvy; and, Head of Brand at Sanlam Group.
Cumulatively, his career history has provided Enver with significant multi-industry experience in key Africa markets and with category-leading Brands spanning Retail, Telecoms, Financial Services, FMCG, the Public Sector and NPC’s.
He is a keen advocate of progressive business models that deliver profitability through innovation, social consciousness, purpose and people.
R&D Director Homecare, Africa & Regulatory Affairs Director, Africa
Jennifer joined Unilever in 2001 as a Graduate recruit in R&D and during her tenure has held various roles within R&D covering South Africa, the Africa Cluster, and the Africa, Middle East and Turkey region. From 2012, Jennifer led the R&D team for the Beauty and Personal Care division across Africa and more recently moved to lead the R&D team for HomeCare for Africa, reporting to Gaby Slavsky, R&D VP Global Deploy, HomeCare.
In addition, Jennifer is the Regulatory Affairs Director for the Africa Cluster and R&D Site Leader, co-ordinating the common R&D agenda across divisions with a focus on Talent management, Safety and Systems.
I am a proud wife and mom to a daughter and twin sons. In my spare time, I make time for gym to keep my body and mind fit. I love the creative outlet of indigenous gardening and home renovations. At work, I am passionate about the opportunities in Africa and I try every day to make Africa stand proudly on the global stage.
Vice President, Homecare, Southern Africa
Lethepu Matshaba, VP Homecare Southern Africa, is a seasoned business leader with 20 years’ experience.
Her diverse career involves the Foods and Personal Care categories locally and within the Africa region. Lethepu has extensive external experience having consulted for several Blue Chip multinationals and Government departments. This after heading up the 2010 FIFA World Cup Marketing Operations.
Her big passion is helping Rewrite Africa’s Narrative.
Vice President HR, Africa
Mechell is currently Vice President Human Resources for Unilever Africa. Leading Talent and organisation activities across Unilever businesses in over 40 countries. She is passionate about building African talent for Africa.
Mechell joined Unilever 18 years ago. Her professional career has always been in Human Resources, but her experience spans Factory and Corporate roles partnering Customer Development, Supply Chain and Finance. Her HR experience spans comprehensive disciplines such as Learning, Leadership Development, Organisational Effectiveness, Culture transformation and business partnering. Mechell has experience across Africa, the Middle-East, South Africa and Turkey.
She was appointed as VP Human Resources in Africa in 2012 and in the lead up to this appointment has notched up many key achievements such as the Unilever Global Compass award in 2010 for Winning with People, Business Partner awards and is recognised as a global leadership development facilitator. Her current portfolio spans 5 multi-country business units looking after 40 countries across Africa.
Before joining Unilever, she worked with Anderson Consulting as a Change Management Analyst. She has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa as well as a post graduate in Business Management from Wits Business School.
Mechell has two sons Yashvir and Ruhaan, who she sees as her true blessing in life. Mechell recently got involved in cycling and in the last few years has completed several cycle races of 100kms in distance. She recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro. Mechell has a zest for life and believes that nothing is impossible to achieve as long as you enjoy it!
Vice President: Finance, Unilever Southern Africa
Mikateko Tshetshe joined Unilever South Africa in 2017 as Finance Vice President, sporting a BCom as well as successfully being qualified as a Fellow with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants in the UK.
Prior to joining Unilever she was the CFO for AstraZeneca, a research-based BioPharmaceutical company. Mikateko also spent 12 years in the FMCG industry with SC Johnson. She has transitioned through several roles to get to where she is today, having started her career as a trainee at the German manufacturer Bayer (Pty) Ltd.
Popularly known as a authentic, approachable and a result driven leader, Mikateko developed her strategic leadership capabilities, constantly ensuring she stretches and develops herself and others.
A proud mum and wife, Mikateko is blessed with 2 beautiful kids and enjoys reading and listening to music in her spare time.
Her daily mantra is “Anything is possible when you put your mind to it”!
VP of Supply Chain, Southern Africa
Sandeep was born and brought up in Zambia (Lusaka) but lived most of his life in the copperbelt (Ndola).
After graduating from St Johns, Sandeep went on to study a Bachelor of Science (Engineering) Electro-Mechanical Degree at the University of Cape Town.
He later won the ACCENTURE Leadership Development Program (AIESEC) Western Cape Regional Award and then joined Unilever in 2002 as a Management Trainee. With driving ambition and talent for leading, Sandeep continued to accumulate invaluable experience in various local, regional and global procurement roles. His growth at Unilever accelerated within the Foods & Home Care Manufacturing Business Units and in 2013 Sandeep was appointed to the role of Vice President Manufacturing for Southern Africa and in 2016 he was appointed VP for Supply Chain Southern Africa.
Sandeep’s passion for Supply Chain is surpassed only by his commitment to his beautiful wife, Dr Ahila Sothylingam-Desai, and their two sons Aaryan and Aarav.
General Manager Ice Cream, Southern Africa
Shaadia Vawda, our General Manager for Ice Cream, Southern Africa, has been part of the Unilever family for over 14 years. Working within the South African market, as well as the UK, Shaadia brings a wealth of experience to the Unilever South Africa leadership team.
She has a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and has worked for companies such as NBS, a division of BoE Bank, and Nestle.
Corporate Affairs & Sustainable Business Director, South Africa
Great products from a range in House-Hold and Home-Care, Beauty and Personal Care, Foods and Refreshments, gives Unilever a unique place in the lives of the people of South Africa! We want to grow our business whilst decoupling our environmental footprint from our growth and increasing our positive social impact. I manage the corporate affairs team.
We lead and connect the sustainable business agenda delivered through purpose-led brands, categories and functions. Together with the SA executive leadership and global teams, we support in-country reputation, communication and sustainability enhancement:
- Engage and advocate the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan (USLP) by building and strengthening relationships with government, employees, suppliers, customers, consumers, media, civil society and communities;
- Manage legislation, regulation, stakeholder engagement, internal and external communication;
- Champion change in carbon emissions, waste and water through innovation;
- Drive economic transformation through Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) and an inclusive growth model for prosperous townships and youth employability;
- Future-proof our business through digital transformation to stay close to our consumers.
Let’s make Sustainable Living a Commonplace!
At SAB I managed 5 regional corporate affairs teams for delivery of the corporate affairs strategy:
- executing the alcohol harm reduction strategy,
- building trust and credibility through stakeholder engagement,
- managing the legislative and regulatory issues;
- delivering commercial value through our licence to trade agenda,
- creating real positive impact on our communities through sustainable development (SD), enterprise development (ED) and social economic development (SED) and;
- building the SAB brand and reputation.
I served as the first Chairperson of the R2b SAB Employee Share Scheme Trust and as a Trustee on the SAB Provident Fund Board.
Consumer Market & Insights Director, South Africa
Stacey Grant is Unilever South Africa’s Consumer Market and Insight (CMI) Director and has 13 years’ experience at Unilever across all product categories, various geographies and has led teams across different business units.
She has worked in both innovation development, as well as market deployment, giving her holistic vision and capabilities in end-to-end business leadership. Her passions are in the areas of nurturing talent, inspiring purpose, and driving business results efficiently through pragmatism and creative problem solving.
In her current role as Consumer & Market Insights Director for Africa, she leads an insights team that is spread across South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and CDI. She works both with marketing and sales teams, to identify growth opportunities and ensure high ROI behind everything that is executed in-market.
Stacey has made many significant contributions to both Unilever and CMI – most notably leading the early work on the PeopleWorld Platform, to set its foundations and secure business investment in this tool, which today is a critical enabler to knowledge storage and usage in the business. And more recently, Stacey led work to galvanise a USLP identity for the global CMI community that connects both CMI heads and hearts to the USLP, which has contributed to a significant step change in the impact that CMI drives in this area.
Stacey is fiercely patriotic to Africa, and is energised by the unique challenges thrown her way daily, which demand innovative and creative solutions. To this end, she has spear-headed and piloted many creative tools and approaches that have since been implemented in other clusters around the world. She is passionate about consumers, and believes she has a key role to keep the business focused on serving people.
In 2015, she presented at an external Women in Research conference, about how digital is an enabler to real human needs & culture, and so even with “the digital way of things” we should not lose focus on the person behind the device.
Stacey’s biggest passion, however, is her family. She is a mum to 2 beautiful boys, who have given her a stronger sense of purpose and perspective in dealing with life’s daily challenges and opportunities.
Vice President Customer Development, South Africa
Stefan Cloete, Unilever South Africa’s Customer Development Vice President has 10 years of Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) experience.
Before joining Unilever in 2017, Stefan worked at Mondelez South Africa for five years. He joined Mondelez South Africa as Key Account Manager Walmart in June 2013. He then took over the Channel Lead for Traditional Trade. In this role, he successfully led the RTM transition to its strategic partner Diplomat.
Stefan then moved to the position of Modern Trade Channel Lead for South Africa which also included Namibia, Botswana and Swaziland. In this role, he played a critical role in transitioning the field sales team to Smollan, restructured the trading terms and deal mandates with modern trade customers and led his team through the WISE implementation, Project Garden as well as a collaborative approach between Sales, CSL and Categories.
In 2016, Stefan was promoted to Senior Category and Planning Director and his achievements include; successfully completing the Revenue Management Project – setting the company up for 2018 AC planning and customer negotiations; assisting the Mondelez Saudi business to put in place best in class Modern Trade Management; incorporating the CEA business into the South Africa structure by identifying opportunities in Kenya and Mauritius and he worked with the POS manager to show significant savings year to date through improvements in efficiency.
Stefan also worked for five years at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) as a Finance Controller where he spent four months on secondment in the London Head Office rolling out NRM projects across Middle East and Africa, Spar Lead and Trade and Shopper Marketing Manager.
Stefan has exceptional customer and trade insights, strong people development skills, a passion for brands as well as superior analytical and commercial acumen.
He is a Finance graduate and has a B.Com Accounting degree and CIMA Honours from the North-West University and MBA in Business Administration and Management from the University of South Africa (UNISA).
Beauty and Personal Care Category Director, South Africa
After securing his Masters in Management from the London School of Economics, Tony started his career in banking; but quickly realized that the world of derivatives and grey suits was not for him! Since 2001, he has been worked in various marketing roles and capacities across all of Unilever’s great Home and Personal Care categories and brands. Most recently, Tony has been based in Singapore in a Global SkinCare Brand Development Director role.
Tony is married, and has three sons.
Legal Director, Southern Africa
Having been at Unilever since September 2015, Wellington has been appointed total Southern Africa, Legal Director as of February 2018.
Born, bred and schooled in Zimbabwe, Wellington is a registered attorney of the High and Supreme Courts of Zimbabwe. His background includes internal corporate counsel roles in sectors such as banking and mobile telecommunications, as well as a private law firm practice. He’s also lectured for over 8 years in the Faculty of Law at the University of Zimbabwe.
Wellington is married with two daughters. He’s extremely passionate about soccer and Formula 1 and sports as a whole. He also fancies himself a creative writer, a true “Jack of all Trades.”