Tag Archives: Conrad Sidego

“This deserves our best shot”

The first Joint Marketing Initiative (JMI) started 10 years ago when there was a brief DA-led political alignment between the Province and the City.  It lost its way and was watered down during the ANC’s period of tenure — Wesgr0 (the trade promotion agency) was just one of the agencies that pulled out and all that came of it was that the Western Cape Tourism Board was replaced by Cape Town Routes Unlimited (CTRU).   It’s only been under the chairmanship of Peter Bacon over the past few years that CTRU has pulled itself together after many years of being in the trenches.  Several CTRU directors resigned over undue political interference and a previous MEC, Lynne Brown, saw it only right that it should be driven by politics.

But now the DA is firmly entrenched in both the Province and the City.  MEC Alan Winde’s first attempt at bringing all the Province’s marketing bodies together didn’t find public favour… after all, it was written by the same people who wrote what exists now.  His new attempt draws extensively on the London Development Agency and others, and saw Andrew Boraine, CEO of the very successful Cape Town Partnership, developing the new initiative.

If anyone can pull this off, it is Boraine.  The Economic Development Partnership (EDP) draws on the lessons and successes of the Cape Town Partnership, established 12 years ago. It embraces everything that is the Cape Town success story CapeInfo wrote about recently — click here.

The EDP will not be a statutory body and government will be a client rather than the owner.  It will operate outside the bureacratic regulatory system with a business mandate.

Boraine concedes that fancy mandates and structures will mean nothing if it does not attract the right people — and that is the risk.  It needs a creative environment to achieve that.

Boraine and his team have started with the fundamentals rather than the big-budget, more glamourous marketing initiatives.

What will the EDP do?  The EDP will be a partnership-based organisation that will lead, coordinate and drive regional economic growth, development and inclusion by concentrating on:

  1. Economic and market intelligence and monitoring to ensure evidence-led strategy and planning.
  2. Economic vision and strategy through building leadership and a common agenda.
  3. Business attraction, retention and expansion through building an improved business and investment climate.
  4. Creation of a single brand platform through a regional marketing alliance.
  5. Organisation of the economic system for optimum delivery through performance monitoring and on-going coordination of reform.

To see the complete Powerpoint presentation on the EDP, click here.  It is an impressive document.

A steering committee was announced last week and met for the first time, with the goal of opening the new organisation by April next year.

I polled two of the steering committee members.  Peter Bacon, former CEO of Sun International and chairperson of CTRU, said:

“I am in agreement with the need for a public/private sector initiative to bring together under the umbrella of one organization the private sector support needed to grow the provincial economy. The responsibility for strategic planning, spatial planning, brand development, facilitation, research etc. is not, in my view, being dealt with at a macro level and the EDP will hopefully get all those involved in the public sector ‘On the same page’ together with the private sector to ensure the best outcome.

“If we are to attract more investment to achieve the growth levels needed to make a positive impact on unemployment then, as a destination, we need to make ourselves attractive. Also we need to support those industries which have already attracted very substantial investments e.g. the tourism industry and ensure that we maximize the return on the limited funding available from the public sector to support them e.g. destination marketing. To achieve this we must address the current confusion, overlap and wasteful expenditure which will be a focus of the EDP process.

“Governments do not make money and need to support the private sector. The EDP will be mandated to do this.”

Otto Stehlek, Protea Hotels chairperson, said Alan Winde and Andrew Boraine need a round of applause.  “They have assembled a group of people who can be potentially effective.  And anything that makes the Western Cape more efficient must be welcomed.  South Africa does face difficulties competing at an international level and we must do everything we can to reduce these difficulties.

“This deserves our best shot.”

This time it must work — there must be a unified focus and efficiencies.  The bottom line — jobs, investment, tourists, etc — is more important than hype.

Are other provinces watching?  The depoliticisation of economic development and tourism is the only way to get them working.

The steering committe tasked with the job of making it happen comprises:

  • Mr Ashoek Adhikari – General Counsel of Media24
  • Mr Peter Bacon – Chairperson of Cape Town Routes Unlimited
  • Dr Walter Baets – Director of the UCT Graduate School of Business
  • Mr Michael Bagraim – President of the Cape Chamber of Commerce
  • Professor Leon Campher – CEO of the Savings and Investment Association of South Africa
  • Professor Brian Figaji – Director of Nedbank Group Limited and Chairperson of the DBSA Development Fund
  • Mr Solly Fourie – Head of the Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism
  • Mr Ben Kodisang – MD of Old Mutual Investment Group Property Investments and Chairperson of Wesgro Board
  • Ms Nontwenhle Mchunu – Entrepreneur and owner of Ezulwini Chocolat
  • Ms Lele Mehlomakulu – Head of HR at Allan Gray
  • Mr Jannie Mouton – Non-Executive Director of PSG Financial Services limited
  • Mr Patrick Parring – Entrepreneur and co-founder of WECBOF
  • Mr Conrad Sidego – Executive Mayor of Stellenbosch Municipality
  • Mr Otto Stehlik – Executive Chairman of Protea Hotels
  • Dr Iqbal Surve – Chief Executive of Sekunjalo Investments
  • Alderman Belinda Walker – City of Cape Town Mayco Member for Economic Development
  • Minister Alan Winde (Chair) – Western Cape Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism

Cape Town: World Design Capital 2014

Cape Town was named as the Word Design Capital for 2014 ahead of the other short-listed cities, Dublin and Bilbao.  This prestigious status is designated biennially by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) to cities that are dedicated to using design for social, cultural and economic development.  Cape Town’s accolade was awarded at the International Design Alliance (IDA) Congress in Taipei today.

After the announcement, the 3,000 conference-goers were treated to a glimpse of what to expect in Cape Town, in this stunning video by Muti Films and the sounds of Freshlyground.

In her acceptance speech Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille said: “It is an honour for me to be addressing you here today as mayor of the first African city to be named a World Design Capital. A city belongs to its people and it must be designed for and with them and their communities. For many years, people have been applying innovative solutions to our challenges. They have been using design to transform various aspects of life. But they have often been working without an overarching social goal in mind.

“The World Design Capital bid process and title have helped to bring different initiatives together and have made us realise that design in all its forms, when added together, creates human and city development.

“The World Design Capital designation gives cities like Cape Town additional motivation to actively think of transformative design in development plans. We look forward to learning from other cities that are using design as a tool for transformation, including past winners Torino, Seoul and Helsinki and our fellow short-listed cities, Dublin and Bilbao. We are honoured to have been considered with them.”

The Cape Town Partnership started the World Design Capital bidding process over a year ago, on behalf of the City of Cape Town. A Bid Committee was tasked to frame the theme of the bid and to source content and case studies for the bid book. It included design case studies in the Stellenbosch area. On 31 March  2011 the 465-page bid book was formally submitted to the International Council for Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) in Canada, with the theme, “Live Design. Transform Life”.

Explaining the importance of the year 2014, De Lille said it will be the celebration of 20 years of democracy in South Africa,

“That celebration will allow for a time of reflection, to think about how far we have come as a country and a city. We will also be positioning ourselves to plan for the future. The next 20 years, and the 20 years after that, demand nothing less if we are to prosper as a city and a society and truly mature into our full potential.

“2014 then is the moment when the past and the future will come together for Cape Town, in contemplation and in action. In South Africa, cities were designed over decades to divide people. But since our new democratic era, we have been focused on trying to bring people together, to create a sustainable city that fosters real social inclusion.”

“The challenges faced by cities today are numerous. Sometimes, they seem unique. When we broaden our horizon, however, we discover the tremendous energy and innovation of individuals, communities and firms using design every day to create solutions. They are to be found within our city… and all over the world.

“In 2014, we will channel that energy into a series of events that celebrate design as a driver of social and economic change in the urban environment. We invite the global design community to become a part of our design journey, in our city, in Africa and in the world,” De Lille said.

Cape Town’s bid has gained widespread public and private sector support at City and Provincial level. It provides the opportunity to embed design thinking into urban development planning for social and economic growth. The accolade will also enhance Cape Town’s reputation globally as being a place that is known for more than just its natural beauty.

Previous World Design Capital title holders have seen increased visitor numbers as a result of the designation. Torino, Italy, World Design Capital for 2008, reported higher visitor numbers in their title year – which coincided with the global economic downturn – than in 2006, when they hosted the Winter Olympics.

Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana, Managing Director of the Cape Town Partnership and co-ordinator of the bid on behalf of the City said: “It has been a long and rewarding journey to get to this point. The real key to our success has been the partnerships that have been forged during the bid process, and the unwavering support of the City of Cape Town and the Provincial Government of the Western Cape. Being named World Design Capital for 2014 is a unique opportunity for us to reposition Cape Town on the world stage as a city of innovation, creativity and caring – and to continue to foster and promote our design industries at home and abroad.”

The World Design Capital 2014 title results in a year-long programme of design-focused events that will see creative communities across the globe turning to Cape Town for social, economic and cultural solutions. These connections are vital in the long-term links the city will secure with global role-players within creative industries. This win also highlights how design innovation has led to growth in the Stellenbosch area, taking the bid beyond the city’s borders to acknowledge the design assets of the region.

Said Stellenbosch Mayor Conrad Sidego from Taipei, where the theme of the IDA Congress is “Design at the Edges”: “The edge is where design of the past and design of the future meet – in this moment we have the opportunity to shape a new design legacy for our region.”