In 2020, Nozicelo Ngcobo joined Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) as the new Public Affairs, Communication & Sustainability Director. She joins CCBSA from Tiger Brands where she held the position of Group Executive: External Relations. In this role, she was accountable for Government, Stakeholder Relations, CSI, SED and BBBEE.
Her move to Africa’s biggest bottler is the fulfillment of a special family tradition and an ambition to help take the business into a new era of growth and support the country’s economic transformation.
“My father worked for CCBSA for 35 years until his retirement in 2007 and he had nothing but great things to say about the business,” Nozicelo says. “When the opportunity came about for me to join CCBSA, I knew that the company culture and values resonated very strongly with me. While this is a fast-paced, high-performance environment, it’s still a place where you want to put your best foot forward and go beyond the call of duty.
“My first task in the coming months is to support the business to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic and to remain sustainable. I will then be looking to unlock social value and mitigate regulatory and other risks by engaging effectively with governments and regulators, which, next to customers, have the single biggest impact on any business,” she says.
Nozi started her career at Sasol in 1994 as a Marketing Officer. From 1997 to 2000 she worked for BMI-TechKnowledge (BMI-T) in different Market Research roles. In 2002, Nozi joined Telkom SA as Specialist: Research and Marketing Intelligence and later Specialist: Research and Knowledge Management. In December 2003, she was appointed Senior Specialist: Research Strategy and Comparative Analysis. Two years later, Nozi was promoted to Senior Manager: Parliament, Public Policy, Legislative Development & Regulatory and later Senior Manager: Regulatory Strategy and Governance.
In 2007, Nozi joined SAB as Executive: Government Relations within the Corporate Affairs Central Office. In 2011, Nozi was appointed Executive: Regulatory Affairs and Government Relations for SAB until December 2015. In 2016, Nozi was appointed Head: Stakeholder Relations Southern Africa for Philip Morris International. She joined Philip Morris International after establishing her own consulting business, Kamali & Associates. Nozi has also previously consulted for the KO systems’ PACS team.
Starting at CCBSA during the COVID-19 pandemic has brought a host of challenges, but she sees her diverse experience as building in her the powerful tools that will help the organisation manage the crisis in a way that not only survives but emerges more resilient than ever.
“I see the COVID-19 crisis as primarily a humanitarian crisis, with the focus on helping our employees, customers, social partners, communities and suppliers remain safe,” she says. “From my perspective, the initial phase involves relief efforts for communities and working closely with Government and other social partners. The next phase is recovery, which is primarily to support all our stakeholders and social partners recover and adapt to the ‘new normal’.”
“This also involves working closely with regulators and policy makers to support the development and implementation of policies to support and entrench this recovery. Lastly, and most importantly, it is to ensure the sustainability of the entire value chain so that we are well positioned to deliver on demand when the economy returns to strong growth,” she adds.
Nozi holds a national diploma in Marketing and a Bachelor of Technology: Marketing from Technikon SA, a diploma in Telecommunication Policy, and Environmental Regulation from WITS Business School. Nozi also holds a diploma in Project Management from Damelin, a BCom Marketing degree from Unisa as well as a Senior Management Development Programme qualification from GIBS. In 2006, Nozi completed an MBA through GIBS at Pretoria University.