The Association for Communication and Advertising (ACA) held its 70th AGM on Wednesday, 5 July 2017 at the AAA School of Advertising campus in Johannesburg, electing its new board of directors for 2017/2018.
New ACA board members elected
- Adeshia Singh, MD, Singh & Sons
- Alison Deeb, group CEO, Metropolitan Republic
- Alistair Mokoena, MD, Ogilvy, Jhb
- Andrew Shuttleworth, executive MD, House of Brave
- Boniswa Pezisa, group CEO, Net#work BBDO
- Charl Thom, group CEO, FoxP2
- Dale Tomlinson, CEO, The Hardy Boys
- Gareth Leck, group CEO, Joe Public United
- James Barty, group MD, King James
- James Moffatt, CEO, Promise Brand Specialists
- Karabo Denalane, CEO, TBWA\Hunt Lascaris, Jhb
- Kershnee Pillay, managing partner, Mindshare
- Kevan Aspoas, CEO, The Jupiter Drawing Room, CT
- Lebogang Masilela, HR director, Joe Public
- Masego Motsogi, MD, Ninety9cents, Jhb
- Mike Gendel, CEO, Gendel Strategic Marketing group
- Mxolisi Buthelezi, founder / CEO, June15 Advertising
- Odette van der Haar, CEO, Association for Communication & Advertising
- Paul Middleton, MD, Ebony & Ivory
- Russell Cory, CFO, Association for Communication & Advertising
- Sarah Dexter, MD, MullenLowe SA
- Thabang Skwambane, MD, FCB, Jhb
- Wayne Naidoo, CEO, Duke Advertising
- Wimpie le Roux, MD, Publicis Machine
- Xola Nouse, MD, The Odd Number
Outgoing chair’s report
At the meeting, outgoing chair, Mike Gendel reported on the ACA’s activities during the preceding fiscal. He noted that during the period under review, the advertising and communications profession operated under extraordinarily difficult trading circumstances. This was exacerbated by the economy experiencing a technical economic recession and, coupled with the negative market sentiment caused by the ongoing state capture saga, weighed heavily on lacklustre growth in marketing spend.
Looking forward to the ensuing period, Gendel stated, “According to the IMF, GDP growth in 2017 is projected at a nominal 0.8%, which will see depressed consumer demand and a knock-on conservative approach by marketers.
“Since the MAC Sector Charter was gazetted under Section 9(1) of the Act on 6 May 2016, the ACA Secretariat has moved from acting as ‘architect and author’ of the Code to being a ‘facilitator and mentor’ and the three-stage education and mentorship programme has received excellent feedback from member agencies that have experienced the benefits.
“The education sector is not for the faint hearted and the AAA School of Advertising has had some challenges to overcome. The AAA board is currently exploring various business and marketing strategies to reposition the school and increase the brand’s attractiveness in the market.
“With skills development being an important sustainable pillar of true transformation in our country, there is a need to up the game in marketing the advertising profession to teenagers, their parents and school administrators. I would like to see a major effort undertaken by the ACA in the 2017-2020 period, including setting ambitious skills development goals and monitoring the impact of our strategy on our member agency staffing and retention levels.”
On matters of the ASA and self-regulation, Gendel announced that the ACA had gone ‘above and beyond’ its responsibility and mandate in participating in the restructuring and rebirth of the ASA and, as a director on the ASA board, he noted his appreciation to all from the ACA who assisted as pro bono specialist consultants or donors.
“ACA plays an important role in protecting the business interests of its member agencies. It is of vital importance that the ACA builds on this hard-won reputation for insisting on fair business practice and protection of our intellectual property, by standing united in tenders and pitches.”
He also voiced his appreciation with respect to the brand reputation and the high esteem in which the ACA is held in the broader business community and pledged the support of the board to the idea of ‘future-proofing’ the profession through defending intellectual property, investing in education and training and continuing to hone skills in an ever-changing media landscape.
“I note the continued excellence achieved by the world class Apex awards and how it continues to impress marketers and advertising practitioners and compliment the ACA CEO and Apex Portfolio Chair, Gareth Leck for continuing to steer the annual Apex awards in the right direction and for enhancing its reputation.
“In terms of additional ACA assets, as at 3 July 2017, 115 registered marketers are using the ACA Agency Locator app to identify custom variables about 36 registered ACA member agencies in good standing.
“The year in review had seen continued challenges with regards to legislative and regulatory matters, most notably the UK ASA implementation of rules banning the advertising of high fat, salt or sugar (HFSS) food or drink products in media targeting under-16s. The proposed implementation of the so-called sugar tax, touted by government, will have a significant effect on marketing investment. On the proposed restrictions on alcohol advertising, currently being debated at Nedlac between government, business and labour, the South African Liquor Brand Owners Association (Salba) believes that the bill will be delayed.
He concluded by thanking the outgoing board members and ACA executives, while welcoming in the incoming board. “They are inheriting a robust, efficient association, with a hardworking, determined culture; one that is highly respected in the broader business community and in government.”