Women empowered Lwazi Media Ventures acquires ownership stake in Ebony+Ivory – with bold vision to build brands and people
Ebony+Ivory is proud to welcome on board its new shareholder, Lwazi Media Ventures, which has acquired a 30 per cent stake in the integrated advertising and media agency.
Commenting on the vision mirrored in the partnership, Managing Director of E+I, Paul Middleton said: “We want to earn our relevance in the South African and broader African market place. I’ve been looking for 20 years for the right partnership for our team to drive this growth and am excited about our aligned purpose to build brands and people while building industry, country and continent.”
Ebony+Ivory reached a significant milestone this year as it celebrates 50 years of serving clients with dynamic advertising and media campaigns. Moving forward Nombini Mehlomakulu, the Managing Director of Lwazi Media Ventureswill serve as a Director of the agency.
“Nombini has a distinguished academic and corporate career. A passion for advertising and marketing communication is close to her heart as she began her career in the agency world. She brings an incredible dimension of intellectual strength to our team,” he said.
In pursuit to passionately grow African creative and media professionals
“We will continue to build for sustainability and longevity. Our decision to invest in E+I was deliberate. We had sought investment opportunities for a long time and found the level of knowledge, skills base and maturity synergistic with the growth we seek to unlock in the sector,” said Mehlomakulu.
The Lwazi Group invests in businesses that it is passionate about, that operate in industries its team has experience in and to which they believe they can add value. “The advertising, marketing and communication sector is truly powerful. It shapes people and their views and how they are portrayed and as custodians of brands, we must remain deeply responsible and manage them in an equally responsible way,” she said.
The 100% black female owned group’s decision to align with the agency was informed by the inherent skill and technique in the team across creative and media delivery. “In my experience of being on both the client and agency sides, it is important for these two marketing streams to sit side by side,” she added.
A further draw card was the work being done through Hlumani, an entrepreneurship hub that empowers enterprise growth for advertising and creative entrepreneurs who show high levels of passion and commitment to a career in the industry.“Hlumani is WOW,” she said. “The concept piloted by E+I is developing people for the industry and for the country. That’s selfless.”
What is the vision for Ebony+Ivory over the medium to long-term?“Like all partnerships we envisage a level of organic and new markets growth as we seek to consistently work with integrity,” concluded Mehlomakulu.
Managing Director: Lwazi Group and Director: Ebony+Ivory
Prior to Nombini’s current position as Managing Director of the Lwazi Group, she was the International Manager: Social Performance for Anglo American plc., with responsibilities that included working with operations in South Africa, Latin America and Australia. Before that she was the Head of Investor Relations for financial services company, the Sage Group. She has a deep seated passion for communication as she began her career in the agency world where she worked on blue chip brands and uniquely South African brandsand went on to hold executive marketing and communication roles at WIPHOLD and Umsobomvu Youth Fund. Nombini was previously a Non-Executive Director at JWT South Africa.
- Digby Wells Environmental (digbywells.com)
- Willis South Africa – Independent non-Executive Director (willistowerswatson.com)
- Harvard Business School – General Management (2012)
- Imperial College (London) – Investment Decisions Associated with Mining (2011)
- Cambridge University jointly with University of Queensland – Advanced Social Management Programme for Anglo American Executives (2010)
- Wits Business School – Certificate Programme in Accounting and Finance (2003)
- Wits Business School – Management Advancement Programme (2000)
- University of Natal – BA Honours Political Science (1995)