Useful and Beautiful PRESENTS

Women in Tech & Digital Conference

Cape Town: 12 JUNE 2019
Belmont Square Conference Centre, Rondebosch, Cape Town

Why Attend?

Featuring an all-female speaker line-up, the event is for anyone (women and men) already in the technology and digital space looking to master their skills. Tech and digital marketing are often seen as discrete sectors and part of what the event aims to do is bring them closer together – in discussion and in practise thereafter. We also want to touch on more complex topics like how to retain women in the sector and creative ways we can accommodate their responsibilities and roles outside the workplace, that often cause them to drop out of tech once they get married or have children, for example. This event is tailored to showcase the high degree of skills and expertise we have in the tech sector, and specifically among women in tech, who are very under-represented at events as speakers and delegates. That said, and while the name and content are tailored to women delegates, we want to make it clear the conference is for everyone.

“It is always a great pleasure for the CoLab for e-Inclusion and Social Innovation at UWC to support the wonderful work of our partners like Lynette Hundermark. Building an inclusive technology ecosystem in the Western Cape and South Africa is critical in creating meaningful employment and innovative social solutions to many societal challenges. We will definitely be at the event.”
The Western Cape Colab Team, UWC

View the full Cape Town programme
Download the full Cape Town programme


01 Entrepreneurship at any age

02 Demystifying AI and other tech trends

03 Creating purposeful solutions

04 Advanced digital marketing

05 Self-care

Our industry expert speaker line-up includes

Aisha R. Pandor
Aisha R. Pandor

Aisha R. Pandor is co-founder and CEO of SweepSouth, Africa’s first online platform for home cleaning services. One of few black female-led tech startups, SweepSouth is also one of the fastest-growing startups in South Africa, and became the first SA startup to be accepted to the 500 Startups accelerator in Silicon Valley. SweepSouth operates in four cities and has created job opportunities for over 11,000 women, with millions in earnings and tips paid out to domestic workers each month. Focussing not just on impact but also on financial returns, SweepSouth was awarded by the South African Venture Capital Association in 2018.

Aisha completed her PhD in Human Genetics at the University of Cape Town and studied at the same time towards a business qualification at UCT’s Graduate School of business, ranking top of her class. She then worked as a management consultant with Accenture focussed on large scale projects in HR management and Supply Chain management in the telecoms and mining industries, before launching SweepSouth in 2014.

Aisha was recognized by the World Economic Forum in 2017 as one 6 African female breakthrough innovators for the impact SweepSouth has made on digital and financial inclusivity. She also serves as a board member for the Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative.

Anna Collard
Popcorn Training – a KnowBe4 company
Anna Collard

Anna Collard is the founder and managing director of Popcorn Training Pty Ltd – a company that promotes Cyber & Information Security awareness training by using innovative, story-based techniques making complex content simple to understand.

Anna has been working in the information security field for 16 years assisting corporates across South Africa, Europe and the US keeping their information assets safe. Anna is a certified information privacy professional (CIPP/IT), a Certified Information Security Systems Professional (CISSP), a Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), an ISO 27001 implementer and lead auditor, a Business Analyst and used to be a Visa/Mastercard Qualified Security Auditor (QSA).

US-based Cyber Security Awareness Training giant KnowBe4 acquired Popcorn Training in March 2018. Anna maintains her role as Popcorn Training CEO – a KnowBe4 company.

Jacqui Mackway-Wilson
GoSocial SA
Jacqui Mackway-Wilson

With a background in education which led her into the publishing industry, Jacqui broke new ground by launching South Africa’s only first-ever, monthly glossy magazine for teachers in 2007. The marketing of the magazine involved exploring the digital space and social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, which were beginning to gain traction in this country at the time.

Naturally creative and ever curious, Jacqui pursued ways and means of reducing costs and maximizing profits for her business through effective marketing in the online space. She made the switch to full-time digital media marketing in 2010, and since then has successfully created, launched and managed the online presence and communities for a number of high profile clients from 4-star boutique hotels to television shows such as Room 9 – the 5th most watched South African show to hit screens in 2012 and 2013 SAFTA winner, as well as for the second season of The Big Break Legacy show (2012/2013) and for South Africa’s premier networking event for entrepreneurs and start-ups, The Hookup Dinner.

Passionate about people, Jacqui thrives on building targeted, active, engaged online communities for brands and businesses that helps to maximize their digital marketing efforts and contribute towards a positive effect on their bottom line.

Barbara Mallinson
Barbara Mallinson

Barbara Mallinson is the Founder and CEO of Obami – a digital learning solutions company that’s been recognised by the likes of Forbes, CNN and Business Insider as one of the most innovative technologies in the world, as well as one of best start ups to come out of Africa.

Mallinson was identified as one of the Mail & Guardian’s “Top 200 Young People to Take to Lunch”, and has been branded an IT Hero, as well as one of Cape Town’s top 10 Women in Business, by the Cape IT Initiative. She’s been recognised by UNESCO as one of 21 young people changing the world, while the likes of IT Web Africa, CNN, Forbes and the Financial Mail, identified her as one of Africa’s top entrepreneurs and women in business.

Mallinson, who holds a number of local and international advisory board roles, has also featured as one of IT Web’s Top 5 SA IT Personalities as well as one of the Top Woman in ICT by the South African Communications Forum. Mallinson was selected as an “Inspiring Fifty” woman by the Consulate of the Netherlands and was a recipient of the Social Entrepreneur Award presented by AWIEF (African Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum).

Lorraine Steyn
Lorraine Steyn
Lorraine Steyn founded the software development company KRS in 1987. She was the first female Delphi Certified Developer outside America. Lorraine balances staying technical with her role as CEO, and actively shares her strategic and technical expertise by speaking internationally and at local conferences.
Birgitta Cederstrom
VP Commercial Brand & Demand MEA, MD B Incorporate, Frost & Sullivan
Birgitta Cederstrom

Birgitta Cederstrom is Frost & Sullivan’s Global Commercial Director for Growth, Innovation & Leadership, and Head for Best Practices Africa. She was the former Head for Telecommunications & IT Division Africa. Within her current role she works with the global Mega Trend and Visionary Innovation team on futuristic trends cross industries. She has over twenty years of sales and marketing, research and consulting experience within ICT and FMCG from Europe and Africa and is passionate about Innovation.

Her areas of expertise include:

  • Strategy Planning, growth strategy formulation, customer benchmarking, geographic expansion, partner identification, market entry strategy, regional strategy, distribution channel development, vertical expansion and new product development.
  • General management, project management, mentoring, business planning and implementation.
  • Business development and client relationship management.
Cathryn Reece
Cathryn Reece

Cathryn Reece is the Product Owner at Property24, South Africa’s #1 property portal. She is formerly the Head of Audience Development and Head of Product at, South Africa’s largest digital publishing network.

Cathryn Reece has worked at Naspers since completing her post-graduate studies in Media at the University of Cape Town. Over the span of more than twelve years she has undertaken roles and responsibilities spanning the disciplines of Audience Development, Product Management, Product Ownership, Business Intelligence, Content Strategy, Social Media Management, Community Management and Content Production. She has a passion for Digital Publishing, Digital Operations, Content Strategy, Content Workflow, Product Development and Mobile Platforms and is a true digital native.

Highlights of her Product Management career included the redesign of News24 in 2009, the product management of the custom-built CMS, the News24 iOS and Android apps, News24’s Live Elections Results platform, and Gridwatch, the popular Loadshedding app which helped millions of South Africans plan their day around power cuts.

Emma Kay
Emma Kay

Emma has been named one of the top 10 women in Science & Technology in Africa, has twice been voted as one of the top 50 women globally in mobile entertainment, elected one of South Africa’s top business women and one of the 20 most powerful women in technology in Africa. Emma has also been judging the Digital Emmies for the last four years and is a board member for Wiki in Africa1.

As an entrepreneur Emma founded and ran two successful companies, the CEO another company and Executive Director of a Foundation:

  • Executive Director of the Cape Digital Foundation, ensuring that there is a digitally connected society through Smart Townships.
  • Founder and CEO of Bozza, a global marketplace for African musicians, poets and filmmakers. For this platform, she raised significant funding from Silicon Valley.
  • CEO of Breakdesign which became the top 5 developers globally for Nokia.
  • Founder and CEO of Triggerfish Animation – the largest and most successful animation company in Africa.
Olivia du Plessis
Olivia du Plessis

Starting from humble beginnings, the local gym is where Olivia realized her passion by assisting others to feel comfortable in their own skin through training and healthy thinking. After obtaining her National Diploma in Sport Management, Olivia branched out on her own to launch Convenient Fitness in 2009. From this foundation the Livfit brand began to develop with group training and weight-loss challenges for men and women expanding the range of training options for both individuals and groups. In addition to her ND, Olivia also successfully completed the 2011 EESA program at Stellenbosch University enhancing her knowledge and fitness expertise even further and also completed nutrition through HFPA in 2016. The LivFit brand accelerated circa 2012 and now the LivFit fitness studio is home to many tenacious fitness fanatics.

Olivia du Plessis is no stranger to rigorous training regimes having being involved with team sports throughout her schooling career and adult life. Using this background as inspiration she brings that go-getting spirit and knowledge to you. Her commitment to completing her goals is one that she believes anyone can develop and it is this drive that she aims to help her clients find within their own lives. Working with clients, a sense of determination and commitment helps keep her outlook positive and motivated with inspiration found in every session.

Celina Lee
Celina Lee
Celina Lee is the CEO of Zindi, the first data science competition platform of its kind in Africa. Celina a dynamic leader with a passion for unleashing the power of data for social good. Celina has a proven track record of thought leadership in the intersect between data and development and has played central roles in launching global initiatives to that effect including the Alliance for Financial Inclusion, insight2impact, and now Zindi. Celina’s work has expansively bridged across the private and public sectors and across various development areas including financial inclusion, micro and small enterprise development, market system development, gender, climate change, and public health. She has lived and worked in countries throughout Asia, Latin America, and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Dr Dale Rae (PhD)
Sports Science Institute of South Africa
Dr Dale Rae
Dr Dale Rae is a Senior Researcher in the Health through Physical Activity Lifestyle and Sport Research Centre within the Faculty of Health Sciences at UCT. Her research focuses on sleep and circadian rhythms (i.e. the body’s 24h clock). She is particularly interested in how sleep is associated with health, disease and obesity, and the relationship between sleep, the body clock and physical performance. She is also the Director of Sleep Science at the Sports Science Institute of South Africa, whose vision is ‘a healthy nation through sound sleep’. Sleep Science enables Dale and her team to put into practice what they learn from research through offering services to the public to help people assess and optimise their sleep, as well as offering various sleep education platforms such as talks, workshops and online courses.
Genevieve Mannel
Genevieve Mannel

Genevieve has more than 20 years of corporate business experience which spans across the financial industry, retail, consulting and pharmaceutical. She has successfully managed and delivered many system roll outs as well as developed and facilitated a Senior Management Intelligence Program. Her passion for artificial intelligence started in this business, where her team started to use machine learning to build scenarios and to provide insights using link analysis tools.

As the head of Business Intelligence and Enterprise Knowledge Management for one of South African’s Top retailers, she developed a BI strategy and managed the delivery of a product and supplier data model. Within the Enterprise Knowledge Management space, the digital workplace strategy was kicked off, where her team started delivering solutions to improve the employee efficiency and also worked towards improving the sustainability of the organisation. One of the most exciting deliverables in this space, was to explore the Watson Cognitive computing capability, where her team used visual recognition to predict options from their catalogues for customers.

Genevieve has recently started in a role as Head of IT, at a large pharma company.

Debra Roodt
Debra Roodt
Debra has over 15-years international experience working for global technology brands and is currently CCO at Xago, a transformational fintech business using blockchain technology. Previously she worked for brands such as SAP in New York and Europe, and Fundamo, a Visa Company, in Africa, taking products to market and helping to build businesses from the ground up. Her experience working in both start-ups and large corporates have given her exposure to all commercial aspects of business, from fundraising and stakeholder management to product road-mapping, strategic sales, pricing & marketing, and operations. In 2017 and 2018 Debra was a proud nominee for the Inspiring 50 Women in Technology, South Africa. She is passionate about technology and the role it can play in the upliftment and full inclusion of women in society.
Helena Wasserman
Business Insider South Africa
Helena Wasserman
Helena Wasserman is the editor of Business Insider South Africa and is a financial journalist and editor with more than 20 years’ experience on some of the country’s leading business titles, including Finweek, Fin24, and Sake24.
Bongekile Mabaso
Uplift Youth in Africa
Bongekile Mabaso

Bongekile Mabaso is passionate about women and children wellness. After completing her Master’s degree in Human Nutrition at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, she worked for 5 years in rural KwaZulu-Natal, where she developed programs that saw a drastic reduction in infant mortality rate due to malnutrition. The success had her team receive several awards over the years, such as: Most innovative Team (2015), UMzinyathi District’s Best Integrated Nutrition Programme Team (2016) and acknowledgement for Reducing Severe Malnutrition (2017). Upon realising the impact of employment on nutrition choices she registered for a PhD in Management Studies at the University of Cape Town. Her research focuses on breastfeeding support in the workplace, particularly by identifying working mothers’ needs and exploring the kind of support supervisors can offer. Her study aims to provide a framework that will help equip supervisors to become key champions for female worker breastfeeding needs.

She is the co-founder of Uplift-Youth in Africa, a voluntary organisation whose mission is to “motivate youth to dream bigger and circulate career related information”. Uplift Youth in Africa targets high schools from underprivileged communities and invite influential professionals to give talks and career guidance to learners and carry out tutoring programs for learners. She’s a fanatic runner and enjoys a good laugh.

Our MC

Mel Jones
Mel Jones

Born and raised in Cape Town and a proud resident of Mitchell’s Plain, Mel Jones describes herself as “the favourite” of three siblings.

She is a single mother, an award nominated comedian, award nominated radio producer and an energetic MC. Her career started taking flight when she was fondly received at the Spier Amphitheatre only 6 short weeks after doing her very first open mic slot. Since then, you may have heard her on the radio as co-presenter of a very popular morning show, seen her on SABC3’s Comedy Showcase, the Phat Joe show, the King Size Comedy Tour, the Blacks Only Comedy Show, Mind The Gap, The Heavyweight Comedy Jam, Kings & Queens of Comedy, the critically acclaimed comedy & sketch show, Bitches, the Vodacom Funny Festival where she was their very first female host, Comedy Central and is hugely popular as a corporate comedian and MC.

There’s also a strong possibility that you may have read about her in various magazines (not the ‘bikini’ mags – the edu-tainment ones. Ask her mom, she’s saved every copy). In fact, she was the guest editor for an edition of Khuluma magazine,’s in-flight magazine.

She’s also been featured in a book called ‘Mitchell’s Plain – A Place in the Sun’ which led to an award winning production, which she starred in and was showcased at the Suidoosterfees at the Artscape in Cape Town for 2 years in a row. And, staying true to her roots has earned her a title as one of 12 ‘Mitchell’s Plain Heroes’. These people were selected as individuals who uplift the community and inspire young people who grow up in similar surroundings. You also get to see her face on a pillar, which is pretty cool.

The shows, ‘Doing It for the Money’ and ‘Still Doing It’ in which she co-starred with another very popular Cape Town comedian, have been met with great reviews as a Cape Town hit.

Mel takes laughter and hilarity very seriously and as one of only a handful of female comedians in the country, she is part of a very exclusive club.

Event organisers

A conference run by two of South Africa’s leading tech and digital marketing professionals who are established role models for South African women, with deep domain knowledge.

Lynette Hundermark
Useful and Beautiful

Lynette Hundermark

An established industry expert in the digital and mobile space in Africa, Lynette is recognised as one of the top 30 most influential women in SA digital marketing, a Regional Business Woman of the Year 2018 Finalist (run by the Business Women’s Association of SA), 2018 Female Role Model in Tech National Winner (SA) and 2018 People’s Choice Winner Regional Winner in Southern Africa (Southern African Startup Awards). She has also been recognised by Fast Company in 2018 as one of the most creative people in business. In previous years she has also been a winner of numerous app development awards both locally and internationally.

With over 20 years of experience in the tech sector (that included various roles as a developer, business analyst, agile practitioner, and product manager), Lynette later found her passion in the mobile space leading all product management and digital initiatives for the initial mobile apps for major brands in SA. She later co-founded specialist mobile solutions consultancy Useful & Beautiful and has a passion for creating great customer experience that harness the power of mobile and digital to help businesses achieve their omnichannel goals for brands across Africa.

Lynette is a sought-after tech speaker, and has spoken regularly at a variety of local and international tech conferences and is frequently quoted in publications throughout Africa. She also served on the judging panel for the EduTech Africa, AfricaCom and World Retail awards, West Africa Mobile Awards and Mobile Marketing Association. She also serves on various advisory boards globally.

Samantha Perry

Samantha Perry

Samantha Perry has worked both as a journalist and PR professional in a consultancy and full-time capacity over the past 20-odd years. As a journalist, she covered the ICT sector for the likes of Computing SA (editor), ComputerWeek, and Brainstorm magazine (editor). In her capacity as a PR professional and consultant she has and does work with the likes of listed and multinational organisations including CLEVVA, LumenVox, inQuba, Striata, MTN and Google (ZA & NG). She has a Masters degree in ICT Policy and Regulation and runs an initiative called WomeninTechZA, which aims to bridge the gender diversity gap in the tech sector. She sits on the UN Office for South South Cooperation Women in Tech programme secretariat, is a regular judge of the GSMA GLOMO Awards and has spoken at a variety of events over the years including Africa Tech Week 2019, Standard Bank Top Women 2018, Leaderex 2018, several Tech4Africas, iWeek 2015, The Mzansi Women’s Film Festival 2015, and several SQL Saturdays.

Useful and Beautiful Women in Tech ZA


Media sponsor
Popcorn Training - a KnowBe4 company
Platinum sponsor
J & J Conferences
Venue sponsor

Prize sponsors

Event photography by

Small One Photography