The integrated marketing and communications investment group, which was established in September 2020, says that it has taken a decision through this ethos to invest in the upliftment and advancement of women in the marketing, communications and research industries.

"I have seen and experienced the way women leaders always bring something special to an organisation. Working with a team that understands our vision as a group has helped us become a challenge group within the industry," says Mahloele.

"Each time a woman stands up for herself, she stands up for all women," says Makwela. Makwela's main role is to ensure relationships are built and maintained within the group's agencies and partners in order to retain current clients and attract new ones for the business to grow organically through collaborations.

"'Each one, Teach One' is a motto I believe in and it should be our role as women to impart knowledge to the world so as to leave it in a better state, and this is a role I do not take lightly," adds Makwela.

Added to this, the company says that it has partnered with successful agencies that are led by women who have been in the marketing and communications industry for over two decades.

One to note is African Response AR, a successful research company based in Bryanston, led by Mamapudi Nkgadima. 

"Transitioning from founding and successfully running a small marketing and research strategic agency to being integrated into a global market research company has been one of my biggest joys and successes. So has regaining the independence of African Response from being a minority black-owned entity to being a 100% black- and majority women-owned medium-size entity," says Nkgadima. 

"Our industry is dominated by a few global agencies accountable for the largest percentage of market research spend from clients. Unless clients start to hold global research agencies accountable, the journey to creating a sustainable market research industry locally, managed by black females, will remain just a dream," adds Nkgadima.

Another veteran in the industry is Di Wilson, founder and CEO of Integer / Hotspot, a shopper and growth agency based in Rivonia, Johannesburg. Wilson's agency is the exclusive South African partner for a leading tech United Kingdom-based global digital sampling company SoPost.

"I am passionate about bringing in young people. I am truly excited about our industry and creating new thought leaders and a new generation of agency. We need to come together and support one another so that we can inspire today's youth to join our exciting industry," says Wilson. 

Nosipho Ginindza is the acting managing director of SoulProviders Collective and she leads a digital agency that has an all-female leadership team. The agency employs young creatives and has experience in running campaigns within the continent.

"As women, we stand on the shoulders of other women, especially those who paved the way for us when it was not fashionable to do so. It is our responsibility to make sure that we hold other women's hands and give them the necessary tools to achieve even bigger dreams than we have," says Ginindza.

"Women should never be intimidated by men. They should always see themselves as pacesetters, trailblazers and pathfinders. They can achieve anything and attain any height they set their heart on. Setting high goals and developing a strong strategy to achieve them, as well as remaining focused on achieving them should be what motivates them," says Ada Adheke, MD of Peacock Media.

Adheke was nominated in the Women in Marketing Communication Awards (WIMCA) for Outstanding Female Media Independent Professional for 2018, and Most Distinguished Amazon of Media (Public Relations) Sector in Nigeria in the year 2017. She believes that women need to be taught and nurtured in the early stages of their careers.

The Matrix Group concludes that it is proud to have a 60% female staff complement across its agency network and will continue to embrace diversity and be as inclusive as possible to ensure it pays it forward to those who come behind it.

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