Today, our products are available in over 16 countries in Africa. Verusha, who leads Marketing for us, is crafting the future trajectory for our category leading brands.

Meet Verusha

 


Nhlanhla (or NZ as we call him), is a die hard soccer buff, who leads Sub Saharan Sales. Along with his team, he is all set to deliver on our ambitious growth targets.

Meet Nhlanhla

"Teamwork makes a team work"

(Amateur photographer, country hopper, aspiring chocolatier, food blogger, F1 racer in past life)

October 2012: The beginning of an amazing race

From the world's best chocolate to the world’s best hair colour. And so my journey with hair began. The Godrej business was growing from strength to strength, and there was a need for a Category Manager. Joining the marketing team was an extremely exciting adventure! My core function was to have a category and trade marketing input into the business; my previous experience in the FMCG and retail spaces allowed me to ease into my new position.

May 2013: A milestone reached

After researching the needs of our brands at trade and category level, we realised there was an urgent need for us to improve our shelf presence. In March 2013, I rolled out a generic retail planogram nationally, to all merchandising agents, sales teams and distributors. With the help of team workshops and group sessions I personally educated our external parties on our brand and instilled brand loyalty. The planogram was successfully implemented in modern trade, resulting in an increase of market share and sales.

At our annual conference in May 2013, I won Best Newcomer for this trade marketing initiative - a milestone that I'm extremely proud of!

January 2014: The winning team

Our Renew brand required urgent attention at one of our key retailers. Sales were plummeting and market share declining. With the help of data insights, I strategically selected category stores where there was an opportunity to increase our distribution, shelf presence and market share. During the project recovery, unit growth soared to an all-time high. The sales team strategically placed point of sale units in stores; this contributed to an increase in overall sales. We also reworked the distribution of our Renew Highlights range at a national level.

I was thrilled to receive an award of excellence for my efforts in recovering the brand sales and increasing distribution.

Today

My category management team has become skilful in providing both internal and external data insights over the last two years. We communicate sales trends and channel insights, along with customised strategies, to stakeholders within our business.

In the near future, I will be exploring shopper behaviour, to understand how our consumers behave as shoppers across different channels and formats, and leverage this intelligence to the benefit of all our stakeholders.

Nicole completed a Diploma in Marketing from IMM (2009).

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"Don't work hard, work smart"

(Self-proclaimed "Cake Boss", an avid baker, enjoys keeping fit through fun exercise, dancing (as a child))

September 2014: New kid on the block

When I joined Godrej South Africa, I was taking a BIG leap from a close competitor. It was a bold decision that I’m glad I made. My first milestone was getting to know my new team and setting out expectations from and to my team members. Differing work styles and personalities were an interesting find, and so began my journey of growth. Being the new kid on the block always poses its pros and cons. But being the optimist that I am, I took full advantage of this and used it to ask as many questions as possible

to broaden my "start up" knowledge.

October 2014: The brand mayhem begins!

My first sizeable task was to lead and execute two major brand initiatives, namely, the total relaunch of the Renew and Inecto Plus brands. This included a full packaging upgrade and a well tailored 360 degree marketing support plan. Timings are tight, since this is to be achieved by March 2015.

The task includes the sourcing and selection of a strategic, creative agency to help me lead the project. We have to manage the re-creation of the brand propositions and positioning, as well as create a full brand communication strategy.

The biggest task is managing the rather

tight timelines and ensuring that we spend our budget efficiently. It is an exciting project and I am learning new things every day by working on two very different brands.

As the pressure mounts and the brand mayhem continues, I feel very excited to make this an epic project; one which could cause significant disturbance in the marketplace.

Today

I am energised and feel so excited about our future plans. Our upcoming marketing initiatives will surely bring a lot of value to the overall Godrej South Africa business and also reaffirm our brands within the hearts and minds of our South African consumers.

Godrej has an amazing vision for

Marketing and where we plan to take this function in the near future, through people and category expansion. There is a lot of focus placed on the team, which will ensure adequate training and skill development to make us world-class!

Over the past five months, I have been implementing some core processes and tools, to set the foundation for our Marketing journey.

Godrej is a place of endless opportunities and I am eager to open up more doors!

Verusha has a Bachelor of Commerce degree, with majors in Marketing & Business Management and Information Systems & Technology (2006).

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"Winning, in the long term, should be your ultimate goal"

(Loves soccer, cars, DIY and wildlife)

August 2014: Starting from behind

Joining Godrej South Africa, a company with a colourful history of success, at a time when it was uncharacteristically experiencing its toughest period in sales, I was met with the challenge of guiding the sales team to turn the tide from my very first day on the job. Five months down the line, it was fulfilling to see the difference that great teamwork, agility and cross-functional cohesion achieved in such a short span of time.

January 2015: Evolution

One of the first challenges I identified upon joining our team, was the overly

lean, agent dependent sales structure that I had inherited. With the mammoth task to grow the business well ahead of market expectation, I realised our business would require a stronger focus on customer development, which our existing structure did not allow. To address the need for improved focus on both existing and new customers, we required a new sales structure with the added need for a phased introduction of new staff. Getting approval for an increased headcount is always difficult, but I was so pleasantly surprised by the response of Godrej senior management. They understood the business case and gave the full buy in - we truly have visionaries at the helm.

The support from all departments, especially HR, is very encouraging, and we welcomed a new manager and field sales manager in less than two months

from the proposal. This gives our team the boost it needs and we indeed have all the variables for a brighter future!

Today

As the Head of Sub Saharan Sales, I have to back our sales department to deliver on our very ambitious company objectives in the present, medium and long-term. That will include, among other initiatives, team development and optimal resourcing.

It is also my objective to harness relationships with cross-functional teams and ensure continuous alignment to guarantee that, as a business, we win in the long-term.

Another critical challenge at hand is to develop our exports market. Watch this space for more!

Nhlanhla is a Marketing Diploma graduate from the IMM Graduate School of Marketing (2004).

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"Do it right the first time"

(Enjoys light engineering, woodwork, repairing the irreparable and hiking in the 'burg)

January 2006: The dawn of a new era

Nothing better builds character and resilience, than being thrown in at the deep end. I recall my first three days at Godrej South Africa (previously known as Rapidol) so vividly. It was the annual factory shutdown and factory workers were on site. I thought to myself what a pleasure to begin a new job, stress free. How wrong I was!

We were running short of stock. I, being the new kid on the block, was tasked the responsibility of manufacturing our products. I found myself literally following a formulation

card to manufacture batches, making my way around equipment like vats, boilers, mixing vessels, water purification plants and various pumps and manufacturing peroxide. My greatest fear was that I had the sole responsibility of ensuring that the Number 1 ethnic brand of hair colour was on shelves.

March 2009: Game changers!

On March 9, 2009 I was chilled to the bone when a specialist took a look at a small spot under my tongue and said “Yup, that’s Cancer, alright”. I was paralysed with fear. The biggest positive of hearing this gruesome news, was that I gave up my 60 cigarettes a day habit instantly. I soon realised the resolve required and how strong you would need to be, mentally and physically, to overcome this. I was lucky that I had my

immediate family and my Godrej family to help me fight and survive.

In August 2010, with our volumes increasing, our 40-year old tubing machine could not cope with the increase in requirements. We had ordered new machines from India – I had the privilege of visiting Mumbai. I was bowled over by the hospitality and passion of its people. I will forever be grateful to Godrej for giving me this opportunity as the memories and the friends I made during that visit will stay with me forever. And yes, the tubing machines are still in operation today, with no breakdowns!

Today

With our aggressive vision and exponential growth aspirations,
we are focused on more in-house

manufacturing and reducing our reliance on outsource manufacturing. I have been tasked the responsibility of sourcing and testing new machinery for the factory and overseeing the installation and commissioning of the equipment.

Starting with 13 SKUs in 2006, we now have about 58 SKUs, with far bigger market penetration. I am thrilled to have been part of this amazing journey of growth in the Godrej Group.

Kevin has a Matric and has completed a number of specialised courses in management.

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"Passion equals success"

(Supporter of Sharks Rugby, loves reading self motivation books and socialising)

January 2012: Inecto Superblack re-launch

I joined Godrej South Africa when we were preparing to re-launch Inecto Superblack, the number one selling SKU in the country, which also brought in the highest gross margin contribution for our company. I was assigned the arduous task of ensuring that the launch was effective and efficient. With what was probably the ultimate consumer exposure for me, and an introduction to a world of knowledge, I literally grew overnight. I am certain I would not have gained so much experience so early in my

career, in any other company, and will be eternally grateful to Godrej South Africa for placing so much faith in me.

May 2013: Inecto Plus grows

Early in 2013, we saw a competitor enter the market. As a leading brand with over 80 per cent market share, we required a 'combat' strategy. We crafted a 360 degree plan for Inecto Plus, wherein we gave our brand its first brand ambassador. This was a big challenge for me, as this campaign had to be executed carefully to ensure success. The end result? The brand enjoyed a double-digit growth and the premium exposure it deserved!

May 2014: My Big Break

In 2014, the Godrej South Africa management team was restructured and I was promoted to a role in brand management. This was one step away from my ultimate goal of becoming the Best Marketer in South Africa. In a matter of a year and a half, I became involved in defining brand visual architecture, played a significant role in packaging upgrade, and chalked out a strategy for growing the market share of the Ethnic category as a whole. This level of involvement is unheard of in most companies.

Today

I started out as an Assistant Brand Manager at Godrej South Africa, and was promoted to Inecto Brand Manager a year and a half later. I currently also champion all research, quantitative and qualitative, that we conduct for Godrej South Africa.

Bongi completed a B.Tech in Marketing from the Durban University of Technology (2010).

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"Do it properly or not at all"

(Loves the outdoors, golf, wildlife and keeping up with his young family!)

July 2011: Sink or swim!

Filling the role of Regional Sales Manager: Inland, a position that had been vacant for almost half the current calendar year, was no easy task.

I was accountable for a region that comprised over half our South African Domestic business, despite having to learn the ropes and grow accustomed to little-known wholesale and modern trade channels. I remember enjoying times where no two days were ever the same; each bringing new challenges, meeting new buyers who sought to "squeeze" the new guy for

all he was worth; all this while delivering on challenging sales targets!

May 2012: The dangling carrot!

Godrej Consumer Products' acquisition of Rapidol a number of years prior, led to the introduction of the Godrej Performance Based Variable Remuneration (PLVR), which was a completely new incentive scheme for our business.

The Inland territory had been showing tremendous growth on the back of dedicated focus on key customers and channels, and this, together with solid performances from the Inland sales team and many other sectors of the business, lead to Godrej South Africa achieving its first-ever PLVR targets!

This set the future tone for the Inland

region, with not a single sales budget missed for the next two years to come. It helped ensure that every incentive has been realised ever since.

February 2013: New challenges!

I was keen on enhancing and expanding my knowledge of working with national accounts. This was indeed an exciting time for me when our then General Manager of Sales restructured the sales management team and split the national account responsibilities.

I leapt at the opportunity to build on my existing sales experience with a more focused management role and have not looked back since.

Today

I currently look after some of our major national accounts, as well as some

smaller ones in the retail sector, while also managing one of the biggest wholesalers in the country. Our Botswana business also forms part of my existing portfolio.

My time is spent travelling between Johannesburg, Durban, Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, with trips to Botswana also thrown in for good measure!

I work with a great team and with Godrej South Africa's current and future expansion plans, I'm hugely excited about where the business will take me to next!

Ross completed his Diploma in Marketing through the Institute of Marketing Management (IMM) in 2009.

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"Making a difference at work"

(Avid reader, loves running, gardening, craft)

January 2001: And so the journey begins...

My stint in Godrej South Africa started as the Secretary to the Export & Regional Sales Manager, when the company was Rapidol, and breaking even was considered a hugely successful year. We were so content and comfortable in our roles, that we never wanted change.

So when the company was acquired, by an Indian multinational, Godrej Consumer Products, it felt like the calm before a storm. But my fears soon subsided when I realised that business continued as usual; in fact

better than usual. How we measure success changed completely and we were encouraged to push for better. Today, simply breaking even is considered an epic failure.

My portfolio explanded and I was no longer just a secretary. I began communicating with sales representatives, processing sales orders, monitoring sales deals and contract prices, being exposed to customers, and preparing sales performance reviews.

November 2005: A new lease in life

I recall so vividly the words of my doctor back then – I had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. For many that would spell out the end. But my perception towards life took a 180-degree turn, and my initial denial turned to acceptance,

positivity and faith in God. It was during this very tumultuous period in my life, that I realised that I had an extended family – the Godrej family. From the top management to the employees in the factory, I was constantly sent well wishes and prayers. Even in some very difficult days, it was these positive messages that I drew strength from. I realised that my company cared for me and this made me even prouder to be a part of Godrej South Africa.

February 2013: SAP

I was so set in my ways and so comfortable in my daily routine, that when we were told we are changing our financial system to SAP, I was flabbergasted. In fact I had numerous sleepless nights. I was assured by our project implementation team, that each and every user would be comfortable on

this system by the go-live date. And lo and behold, when the 5th of February came and I processed the first order, my deepest fears subsided.

Today

I work for a company with strong values and ethos, and in my darkest days, my Godrej family has been my beacon of light, support and positivity. Fourteen years have flown by in a flash – I have been privy to numerous changes and I have also seen the company grow in leaps and bounds. I look forward to our continued growth, knowing I will be a part of it.

Terry has a Matric and has completed a course in Bookkeeping.

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"Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value"

(An avid reader of biographies and crime thrillers, sports fanatic - even from the comforts of her couch - and self-confessed shopaholic)

June 2008: The Beginning

It has often been said that the most difficult thing is the decision to act. I was in my comfort zone in the field of auditing. So in June 2008, when I did make that difficult decision to act, I joined Godrej South Africa as the Financial Manager, still wet behind the ears when it came to commerce and industry. Little did I realise that this new company would be my home for six years and counting. The support, guidance and teachings I received by both local management and our

management team from India is paramount to where I am today.

April 2010: New Challenges, Bigger Opportunities

I am always up for challenges, as I truly believe that unless we undertake more than we possibly can do, we will never do all we can do. When I was offered the chance to include Retail in my portfolio (with the Kinky Group), I grabbed the opportunity with both hands. Learning a new industry, that of dry hair, was both daunting and extremely challenging. Today, I cannot say I have conquered this challenge, but what I am certain of, is that one day we will!

April 2012: The promotion!

I was promoted as Chief Financial Officer in 2012, making me the only female CFO in all of Godrej Group's

companies. It is an achievement that I am most proud of and it proved that nothing ever comes to you that is worth having, except as a result of hard work.

Today

I started out as the Financial Manager in one company, one industry.

Today, in my sixth year at Godrej South Africa, I am the CFO of two companies in two completely different industries. I have also become part of the Godrej Fellows Programme, which brings together young people from across Godrej, to lead change projects.

There is an old Chinese Proverb "Be not afraid of growing slowly, be only afraid of standing still". With the vision and future plans and opportunities at Godrej, standing still is not a fear. If the

last six years is just a brief glimpse of what the future can be, I cannot wait for the future!

Pravasha completed her BComm (Hons) degree from the University of Natal and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.

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"The best solutions are often the simplest"

(DIY nut, diehard Beatlemaniac, avid reader, Sci-fi fan, Tech geek for life)

June 2004: Northern frontiers

Tasked with building business scale in the smallest region for Godrej Sara Lee, the pressure started from the day I joined Northern Region. A highly seasonal Household Insecticides business and the North being a stronghold for both our major competitors were the big challenges to overcome. An outstanding team, some channel innovations and creative use of trade marketing inputs, led to a business turnaround in the first year itself; moving from a negative growth at the end of Q1 to being the fastest growing region by

year end. This performance was only bettered in subsequent years.

October 2006: The marketing bug bites

An opportunity to work on our pioneering household insecticide brand was too good to miss, especially since it meant helping to script Good knight’s resurgence. Over the next few years, it was a privilege to lead a team of overachievers who shaped the Good knight brand from a vulnerable #2 to market leadership, and then eventually market dominance. Working on the Hit Brand was a special joy and there is a huge sense of pride as it transformed from a metro centric brand to a Major HI Player with absolute domination of the Aerosol format.

July 2010: Making life Ezee

Post the merger with GCPL, in addition

to the HI portfolio, I got the opportunity to work on a small brand that was simply brimming with potential. Working on the Ezee brand has been most satisfying, and we saw its loyal franchise of consumers grow significantly over the last three years, leading to more than doubling of the business turnover. And on the fabric care portfolio, the best was yet to come!

April 2012: Never say Dye!

In April 2012, I took on the hair care and fabric care portfolios. One big change we are trying to engender in our consumers to move the perception from the monochromatic allusion of “Godrej hair dye” to the more expressive polychromatic promise of “Godrej Hair colours”. Some product innovations, fresh new packaging and communication and the consequent

growth far ahead of the category validated that we were well on our way to doing so.

Today

2014 brought the opportunity to work in South Africa, this most exciting and most beautiful of countries. A set of amazing hair colour brands, a really dedicated team and a country that is so alive with potential, allows us to set our aspirations really high. Over the next few years, I feel proud that I will be part of the change that will bring about amazing new products, an awesome work culture and great business results.

Kapil is a Mathematics Graduate (1993) and completed his MBA (Marketing & Systems) from Indian Institute of Management (1996).

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"Push for results that are beyond your imagination"

(Enjoys watching cricket, trading)

March 2011: The start line

Joining Godrej South Africa was an excellent opportunity for me to broaden my perspective on various dimensions of supply chain management. For the first time in my career, I was responsible for managing direct customer deliveries (mainly Modern Trade) on stringent delivery timelines. I also thoroughly enjoyed the Procurement and Cross Border logistics part of my role, as it challenged me to think creatively about better means for cost reduction.

January 2013: SAP implementation

Project managing SAP implementation was a significant milestone in my journey. Right from the blueprint to going live - we did it all in just four months. I gained insights to all facets of the business at a microscopic level and was therefore able to appreciate the complexities that each function faces.

October 2014: Redesigning our supply chain network

Our supply chain has been one of our core strengths over the years. Demanding macroeconomic factors like the depreciation of the Rand, rising electricity and labour costs, and continuous reduction in consumer order lot sizes, meant that we were finding sustaining stronger gross margins and ensuring higher fill rates, a challenge.

Although transforming our distribution and warehousing network in the midst of a growing business was a challenging task, it was critical for us to maintain higher fill rates as we evolved. But we worked closely together as a team, completed our transition successfully and reduced distribution costs by 7%. It was a big win for us!

Today

I now lead Supply Chain (Operations, Distribution, and Procurement) for our hair colours and hair extensions business. The constantly changing macroeconomic environment in the country translates into extensive opportunities for me to, in this role, drive efficiency and profitability for our business. I cannot wait to see what the future holds!

Atul is an Electrical Engineer from the National Institute of Technology, Nagpur (2000) and completed his MBA (Finance and Operations) from SJMSOM, IIT Bombay (2005).

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"Integrity, good work ethics and loyalty should always be a priority"

(Aerobics enthusiast, ardent fan of local soccer team Orlando Pirates FC, enjoys being actively involved in social programmes aligned to his Church)

June 2000: The Start Line

At the start of my career with Godrej South Africa, I built a strong communication network with our existing buyers and prospective clients in KwaZulu-Natal, who were selling hair dye to supermarkets and wholesalers. Increasing brand awareness was also a big focus. My role also involved travelling distances (which I soon became accustomed to) and building solid working relationships across the region.

Balancing good communication skills, managing a travel itinerary and meeting people from across the culture spectrum was a rewarding challenge.

May 2010: Godrej buys Kinky

When Godrej bought Kinky World of Hair, it brought with it much new learning for me – understanding Inecto hair dyes and Kinky hair pieces, and selling them to all our customers, new and old.

We were growing the business. There was an increasing awareness of service delivery and product sales and the targets we were setting were very high. My role now involved forecasting, preparing and strategising to meet those targets.

Today

I am currently involved in large volume sales for Inecto hair dye and Kinky hair pieces. Our key objective as a team, is to work together to exceed our sales targets. I enjoy my role and the learning it offers and am very excited about my future.

Muzi completed his matriculation in 1978 from KwaMakhutha High School, Durban.


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"Happy customers make for happy payers!"

(Avid reader; fishing and camping enthusiast)

December 1993: The beginning of a new chapter

It was extremely daunting to join the workforce again, after being a stay-at-home mom for a long time. So many things had changed while I was away – there were computer programmes I had never heard of, and being in a corporate environment, there were new policies and procedures to be adhered to. I felt like a fish out of water. Thoughts of quitting and returning to the comforts of my home kept resonating in my mind. However, with the guidance and support of the management and staff at Godrej

South Africa (then known as Rapidol), I persevered and so, after over two decades, I still find myself here. I will eternally be grateful to my fellow Godrejites, who made me feel very valued through their patience and support.

June 2000: Big trouble strikes

Strike season had hit South Africa, and our company, like many others, was affected rather badly. Our factory had come to a halt. Some of our fellow Godrejites who had shown up to work then, were even physically intimidated and assaulted. For three weeks, the office staff became factory staff. I personally operated a shrink tunnel. So, when I walked through the aisles at a store, I smiled with pride seeing the fruits of my labour on the shelves. Those three weeks exemplified the true

meaning of team spirit and the passion we all have in our brands, as it never once crossed our minds whether or not to undertake manual labour, despite the risk of being attacked.

September 2012: The dawn of a new era

In 2012, I returned to work after a period of leave, only to learn that our company had been acquired by an Indian multinational. Fear gripped us, as it seemed our future was in jeopardy. The obvious and natural thought being that with any acquisition, retrenchment was imminent. How wrong I was! We were reassured that business would remain as usual, but the company would grow exponentially. With the acquisition by Godrej, our ERP system also changed. SAP was introduced. I never thought I could learn another system, but I now live by the adage "Never say never"

and "anything is possible". And for this, I thank Godrej for reinforcing in me that any challenge can be overcome.

Today

Over the years, I have been exposed to many roles in the company – from being a sales order clerk to manning the switchboard, to handling accounts payable, and now as the Senior Credit controller. I couldn’t be prouder to be a Godrejite and I eagerly anticipate the future, knowing that I will only grow, irrespective of the new challenges that come my way.

Rozan has a Matric.

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"At the end of the day you bet on people, not on strategies"
- Lawrence Bossidy

(An avid reader, story teller, Rolling Stones fan, agony aunt, superdad, social media expert)

June 2010: Management trainee with Godrej

I joined Godrej as a HR management trainee. I was given the opportunity to work on several exciting assignments. I toured all our factories across India, and advised on blue collar training. Soon after, I joined the GCPL international HR team and helped seasoned professionals gain awareness on cultural etiquette unique to the geographies they were moving to.

I also managed part of our HR IT systems, and last but not the least - helped kickstart the coolest project in town, Godrej India Culture Lab, a fluid experimental space that cross-pollinates ideas and people to explore what it means to be modern and Indian.

April 2011: Building a learning organisation

Thereafter, as learning & OD manager, I worked on creating development plans for individuals, launched online learning tutorials, and conducted multiple assessment and development centres for sales and supply chain professionals. These were followed by interventions to beef up the capabilities.

May 2013: Building a future ready sales organisation

I then went on to manage all HR processes, including sales force effectiveness and productivity, capability building, engagement, reward & recognition, sales incentives, and talent management. I learned immensely by travelling and meeting sales employee based out of the West and South regions of India.

March 2015: Fostering an inspiring workplace at Godrej South Africa

I packed up and moved to Durban to lead the people agenda for Godrej South Africa. I soon learnt why South Africa is called the rainbow nation - I understood how the creative expression flourishes and how cultural diversity is embodied through traditional and modern

interpretations of songs, dance, theatre, design, fashion and food, in the beautiful country. The affair continues.

Anurag is a B.Tech (2007) and a postgraduate in HR from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (2010).

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"Work in silence, let your success make all the noise"

(Reading (all genres), writing poetry and short stories, watching movies (Hindi, sci-fi and thrillers))

January 2013: The Start Line

I joined Godrej South Africa as the Scientific Advisor for our R&D function. I requested to be placed under the marketing team to explore a different side to business, as opposed to just the R&D element. My expectations were very different from the reality. When I entered the company, I was exposed to so much more than marketing. I got an opportunity to work with so many interesting individuals from various divisions. The environment was much warmer and more intimate.

It did take me a while to adjust and find my feet though and I had to literally hit the ground running.

June 2013: My Big Break

I was tasked with renovating the current QC testing centre. Within my first 6 months, I managed to equip the lab such that we could utilise it as both, a basic Development and QC resource. I also managed to put together lab SOPs and train some staff on a GLP. While I had worked in lab environments before, I never envisioned myself actually putting together a lab from scratch. It was truly a nerve-wracking but educational experience.

December 2014: A new beginning

I was involved in putting together a Godrej Technical Hair institute in South Africa, which is basically a small salon for internal in vivo product testing. Again, while I had been exposed to such technical centres in the past, I was never really involved in putting one together from scratch. Yet again, Godrej provided me with great responsibility, and a new opportunity.

Today

Today, I am the Product Integrity & Development Manager for Godrej South Africa and I look after R&D and Quality Assurance/Control. These functions are not only limited to the South African business, but also other African Export markets.

I'm also now getting slightly involved in our Kinky business, which focuses on synthetic hairpieces and I'm truly starting to enjoy it.

Educational qualifications

Seema has a BSc degree, majoring in Pure and Applied Biochemistry and Microbiology (2003). She has also completed a BSc (Honors) in Biotechnology (2004), a Cochem diploma in Cosmetic Science (2009), and a B.Com in Marketing Management (2013).

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"Less talk, more action; ownership; 'can't' isn't an option!"

(Loves photography, art, reading)

February 2015: The Start Line

I was initially hired with Godrej on a 3-month temporary contract basis, with a possibility of the role being converted to a permanent one. I was thrilled to have been offered a full-time permanent position before the end of the first month! Initially, I worked on Kinky advertising elements (social media, in-store and above the line). I had never worked on an ethnic hair brand before, so this was an exciting learning experience for me. I was then involved in one of the biggest re-launches at Godrej South Africa - for the Renew hair colour brand - and had the opportunity to help shape the brand image.

April 2016: "On the up and up"

I was involved in launching Inecto Superblack Naturals and Superblack for Africa. These were exciting projects, since it was the first time we launched hair colour in a sachet format. At this stage, I was also involved in presenting various creative options for research purposes, which led up to our new product developments. Godrej awarded me on various occasions for living by the 100/0 principle and exemplary performance, which was a humbling experience. The cherry on top came when I was rewarded for my efforts with a promotion to Senior Executive after my first year at Godrej.

September 2016: New product developments and launches

I was thrilled to have worked on the biggest sub brands for Inecto and

Renew - the Inecto Unlimited Semi Permanent hair colour range and the Renew Perfect Colour range. I was the key creative lead on both, and Godrej gave me the perfect platform to display my talents, as I was involved in all creative aspects from concept to final art. This has been the highlight of my career as a designer. When I started at Godrej, I had never worked on hair colour or ethnic portfolios and today I am proud to be the creative mastermind behind these two product lines under the leading hair colour brands in South Africa.

Today

Godrej has given me the opportunity to be involved in key projects and broadened my knowledge of aspects not limited to just graphic design. I was also involved in putting together a robust

process to manage design projects effectively, which has allowed me to develop my leadership and management skills.

My core functions are graphic design and managing all creative jobs for the Godrej SA Design department (Dezco). I also handle the photography, videography and creative editing.

Today I am focusing on my goals, as well as my future within the company. I am working towards creative management, and several exciting new and upcoming product developments.

Lynette has a Design Certificate in Concept Interactive (2004) and 3D modelling in Photoshop from Udemy (2016).

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"Success doesn't just occur, it's a project that is worked on each day"
– by Robin Sharma

(Sports fanatic, especially cricket, volleyball and tennis)

August 2012: New Beginnings

My journey with Godrej South Africa began in August 2012, when I made the transition from a heavy-duty equipment company to FMCG. I began as the Personal Assistant and Admin Officer to the CEO but knew my potential was much greater. It was with the change in CEO that I was awarded with opportunities and I moved out of my comfort zone. As the saying goes, "you can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable". Needless to say, with the new role came new challenges.

December 2014: Milestone role

Having a flair for numbers was of great help when I moved roles to become the Sales Analyst for Godrej South Africa. Under the leadership of the Head of Sales, my responsibility was to analyse all databases available to us, and provide insights to our Sales team. I was trained on AC Nielsen and used this tool to gain market data that was useful to our business. This role proved fruitful to me, in that 6 months later I was promoted. It's taught me more about myself and my capabilities, boosted my confidence and allowed me to explore within Godrej South Africa.

Today

After 6 months of assisting the Sales team, I was awarded the opportunity of joining the dynamic Marketing team, a role I was not even remotely familiar with. Since joining the Marketing team in July 2015, I was offered to work alongside the CEO in launching Inecto Superblack Naturals, which went into the market within a space of 2 months from artwork to trade. Slowly I started gaining the knowledge of a marketer under the mentorship and tough love of the CEO and Head of Marketing. Being awarded the second project launch under Inecto, allowed me the opportunity to run a project as the sole leader. We faced many tests and challenges but in the end, when you see your product on the shelf, it's the greatest achievement and fulfilment a person could feel.

Which brings me back to when I first started as a timid and reserved individual, and today I am a confident and resilient individual who will never stop trying new projects, even if I feel uncomfortable at first, because I know my success is around the corner. Doing what you're passionate about truly brings out your confidence, and Godrej made that possible for me.

Thank you, Godrej South Africa!

Predahni has completed her studies in Computer Studies.

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"Make every effort to add value in everything that you do!"

(Loves roller derby, dancing, getting lost in a good story, singing, laughing with friends, trivia and creating)

October 2015: A brave new world!

I joined Godrej South Africa as the second graphic designer alongside the Marketing team. It was not long before I jumped feet first into an exciting and long overdue brand overhaul with the Kinky World of Hair revamp. De-cluttering and presenting a newly streamlined and polished product to a consumer that was "losing touch" with this "old friend" (with over 500 SKUs) was a challenge I was happy to take on. Now, we are well into our new brand roll-out with newly branded stores, bolder more striking

packaging, and even a classier online shopping experience under way. We have even re-introduced an aftercare range in store, and now offer the full hair care package! Tomorrow is looking rather attractive in the world of Kinky.

August 2016: Outshining the rest!

2016 has seen us launch product innovations that have grown the Inecto family range, with the addition of Inecto "Ultra Gloss" – our South African spin on our Godrej Nupur brand, developed in India. In a world dominated by strong hair colour brands, with many offerings, Ultra Gloss had to stand out and position itself as a hair dye with benefits like no other! More than a colourant, the added conditioning aspects would really cater to the needs of South African hair and what better way to do so than by using indigenous baobab oil working

alongside well known conditioners like honey extract and coconut oil, to deliver a rich colouring experience!

Today

My focus at Godrej is aimed at building purpose-led brands that make a difference! I believe in aligning brand quality and integrity, both inside and out; being all that you claim you are behind the desk and on the shelf (as a product). I endeavour to apply this outlook to all my projects here because much like the Godrej values, I believe in a holistic approach. Brands are not just about what we want to put out or impose on unsuspecting, gullible creatures. They should instead be passionate projects of hard work and love, wrapped in the ideologies we firmly stand behind - with the end user as the centralised focus, rather than

profit or gain. I believe in creating with a conscience; brands that touch the lives of our users. After all, an experience with our brand should be an experience not quickly or easily forgotten. I believe that in this, we will find true success.

In my time here at Godrej South Africa, I've been happy to discover that being no stranger to hard work can be very rewarding. Having a hand in new product development means that I get to see the fruits of my labour live and in action, and accessible to the public for which it was created - i.e. in store, on shelf!

Samantha has a BA Communications Management degree, specialising in Creative Brand Communications (2004) from Vega - The Brand Communication School.

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"Success doesn't come to you, you go for it" – Marva Collins

(Adrenaline junkie, loves watching movies)

August 2015: A new chapter

I joined Godrej South Africa as the Assistant Brand Manager on Renew – our leading Caucasian hair colour brand. Joining Godrej was a huge change for me, as my previous company was an electronic engineering firm. As you can imagine, this was a completely new territory to me. However, I've always been keen to enter the FMCG industry and be associated with the marketing of a reputable consumer brand. My opportunity came along, and I seized it with both hands. my superiors

(andsome tough love), I was able to grasp some very important learnings, and within no time I was thrown into the fast-paced environment at Godrej.

I was instantly introduced to the true world of marketing, and started gaining my experience from the start. I was very quickly entrusted the Renew brand and executed various activities for the brand. As we were quickly entering summer, we were launching a complete 360 summer campaign. Together with this, I was able to lead the campaign across various key accounts, gave away my first car in-store, ran print campaigns, and most excitingly, I produced my first TV advert! Not only did the TV ad production open my sights to planning, sourcing, script writing and production, but it also exposed me to the world of media planning.

December 2015: New product launches

Not so long after, I quickly moved onto my first innovation and started leading a cross-functional and diverse project team on Renew Perfect Colour. This added great accountability to my role, as I was now responsible for keeping all cross-functional teams aligned to launch a new line within very tight deadlines. Nevertheless, I learnt fast and moved with the flow, asking loads of questions as I moved along. This new product development exposed me to consumer research, product development, supply chain, packaging design, preparing to launch into the trade, strategic business planning, communication across all platforms, and an array of other activities. I am currently well into my second launch and working on my third.

Today

When I entered the company a year ago, Renew was the country's third largest Caucasian hair colour brand. Today, we are the second largest brand, with our sights not so far off from being number one. So some exciting times ahead!

I am truly grateful for this opportunity. Although I have come a long way, every day is a new day, lending me the chance to learn something new and interesting at Godrej.

Verushka has completed a B.Tech. in Marketing from The Durban University of Technology (2010), and an MBA from MANCOSA (2016).

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"Nothing succeeds like success"

(Reading, listening to music, holidaying with family)

April 2014: Second innings

Godrej was not new to me. Shortly after my Chartered Accountancy, I spent 10 years at the Group, when I went on to head Finance at the erstwhile Godrej Sara Lee and later, Godrej Tea. This gave me tremendous exposure, which ranged from managing a high growth business to a young start-up, and I firmly believe it continues to hold me in good stead.

I have worked across various domains within Finance, such as treasury, accounting systems, ERP and taxation. Business planning, however, is what I always enjoyed the most -

being able to help businesses grow in scale and scope, while managing challenges along the way.

So, when I was offered the role of CFO, it seemed like the perfect move for me.

September 2014: Making South Africa home

This was my first time in South Africa and there was so much that was still very new to me!

The Godrej journey in Africa is a very exciting one. We see tremendous potential in this geography and especially, the exciting hair care industry that we are part of. From a more operational perspective, there was a lot for me to do - particularly strengthening our processes and streamlining them with our centres of

excellence. Integrating with the team and settling in has been great. Sure, there are many differences from what I was used to, but my team here has been very supportive. I particularly enjoy our open, entrepreneurial culture.

My family still lives in Mumbai, which means that I travel as much I can; and they visit too. Even as we are getting used to this change, I am grappling with learning how to live on my own - from keeping home to cooking for myself! I guess there is a first time for everything!

Today

I wear two hats. Apart from being the CFO at Subinite & Frika, I am also Regional CFO for Southern Africa, and I liaison between them with our central team in India. This requires me to work with different teams with distinct

working styles and in different stages of maturity. I am able to leverage my experience of working across multiple environments, as well as my knowledge of Godrej and what it takes to be part of a start-up, to deliver successfully. Nothing excites me more than creating something new - and that is exactly what this role offers.

Suhas has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Mumbai University, and is a certified Chartered Accountant from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).

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