Individual DealMaker of the Year

DealMakers Annual Gala Awards

At the end of each year, DealMakers calls on the corporate finance industry to submit their nominations for the Individual DealMaker of the Year.

With the assistance of the independent panel, and taking into account the number of nominations each individual has received, a shortlist of 3 - 5 nominees is announced. 

Information on the shortlisted candidates is then evaluated by the Independent Panel and they select a winner based on a variety of criteria, including but not limited to:

High profile deals/transactions |   Individual's contribution to the deal  |   Execution complexity  |   Peer recognition

2021 DealMaker of the Year

Lydia Shadrach-Razzino

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Gold Medal Award

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Marylou Greig (DealMakers), Arie Maree (Ansarada), Lydia Shadrach-Razzino (ENSafrica) and Andile Khumalo (Ince

This was the second consecutive year Lydia was shortlisted for the Ince DealMaker of the Year Award. An executive in ENSafrica’s Corporate Commercial department, Lydia heads up the firm’s Private Equity team and co-leads one of the largest teams in the Corporate Commercial department. Her approach is highly client centric which results in arriving at sustainable, innovative and effective solutions for them. Lydia worked on a number of high-profile transactions announced in 2021. She led the team in the negotiations and represented Vodacom in the R41 billion Vodafone Egypt deal, shortlisted for the Brunswick Deal of the Year and on the sale of Ascendis Animal Health to Acorn Agri & Food, shortlisted for the Catalyst Private Equity Deal of the Year.

Comment from the Independent Panel: This year’s panel fulfils last year’s panel’s prediction that Lydia is a future winner. Winning deals do not always result in one of the key advisers being crowned Top DealMaker, but this year, everything Lydia and her team touched turned to gold! Most of her significant deals did well, with two of them winning their categories. Triple gold for this consistent contender, who seems to have become a master at solving complex structures and translating them into practical agreements.

Other nominees for 2021 were:

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Ferdi Vorster (Rand Merchant Bank) 
A member of the Rand Merchant Bank team since 2007, Ferdi’s strong technical skill and his ability to develop deep and enduring client relationships earned him a place on the nominee shortlist in 2013. He led several market-leading transactions during 2021, most notably acting for Distell, originating, planning and executing the proposed multi-jurisdictional deal with Heineken International, a deal shortlisted for the 2021 Brunswick Deal of the Year. In addition, Ferdi led the execution of the acquisition by Karooooo of locally listed Cartrack and worked on the sale of its 68.3% stake in Tanzanian listed Tanga Cement by AfriSam to German multinational HeidelbergCement.

Jesse Watson (Webber Wentzel) 
This is the third time Jesse has been shortlisted for the Ince DealMaker of the Year award, previously in 2018 and 2019. His unwavering vision, consistency, leadership and overall contributions to the majority of the high complex and high-profile deals has earned him wide recognition. Jesse, a partner in the Corporate Practice at Webber Wentzel, was the matter lead in the Prosus/Naspers voluntary share exchange offer which has made the shortlist as nominee for the 2021 Brunswick Deal of the Year. The transaction, which spanned nearly two years, involved providing strategic advice in relation to the deal structure while managing specialist teams and leading regulatory and other stakeholder interactions.

David Tudor (Naspers/Prosus Group) 
David was nominated for the Ince DealMaker of the Year award as he has, as in house counsel, led the many complex multi-jurisdictional transactions that have been such an integral part of positioning the Naspers/Prosus companies as the giants that they are today. In 2008 he was appointed as Naspers and MIH Group Senior Counsel. In this role he led the legal teams for the group's M&A activities in Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe and Russia. David went on to become General Counsel of the Allegro Group (a subsidiary of MIH) and was subsequently promoted to the position of General Counsel: Global Transaction eCommerce at Naspers.

2020 DealMaker of the Year

Anthony Knox

Gold Medal Award

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Anthony Knox (Merrill Lynch) has over 15 years of investment banking experience. Over the past three years Anthony has played an instrumental role in executing some of SA’s highest profile deal, the most notable being Sasol’s disposal of a 50% interest in its Lake Charles Chemicals Project, the disposal of a 34.4% stake in Alexander Forbes by Marsh & McLennan, Old Mutual’s Managed Separation and as independent expert in the unbundling of FirstRand.

Other Nominees for 2020:​

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Cobus Human

Cobus Human (One Capital) has been in corporate finance for over 22 years and in 2015 was the recipient of the Individual DealMaker award for 2014. During 2020 Cobus worked on a number of noteworthy transactions including the take private of Peregrine by Capitalworks, the hostile takeover defence in relation to Quantum Foods by Country Bird and the placement of domestic medium-term notes in respect of Northam during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Lydia Shadrach-Razzino

Lydia Shadrach-Razzino (ENSafrica) has 20 years’ experience and heads up the firm’s Private Equity team and co-leads a large team in the Corporate Commercial department. During 2020 Lydia worked on several notable transactions - the acquisition of JET by The Foschini Group and the company’s R3,95 billion capital raise and the unwind by Anheuser-Busch InBev of its BEE transaction SAB Zenzele, deals which have been shortlisted in the 2020 DealMakers category awards.

2019 DealMaker of the Year

Jako van der Walt

Gold Medal sponsored by

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Other Nominees for 2019:​

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Jesse Watson

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Johan Holtzhausen

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Kevin Trudgeon

2018 DealMaker of the Year

Martin Kingston

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Gold Medal Award

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Neal Froneman - Sibanye-Stillwater, Steven Engelsman - Ince, Martin Kingston - Rothschild & Co, Marylou Greig - DealMakers and Sam Riley - Ansarada

Other Nominees for 2018:​

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Glynn Potgieter

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Jesse Watson

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Sainesh Vallabh

2017 DealMaker of the Year

Neal Froneman

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Gold Medal Award

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Steven Engelsman (Ince) , Arie Maree (Ansarada), Neal Froneman (Sibanye-Stillwater), Richard Stewart (Sibanye-Stillwater) and Marylou Greig (DealMakers) 

Other Nominees for 2017:​

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Anthony Bayne

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Garth Willis

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Gary Hudson

2016 DealMaker of the Year

Piet Ferreira

Gold Medal Award

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Arie Maree (Ansarada), Charl Keyter (Sibanye Gold), Michael Walters (Ince) and Flint Macgregor (Citigroup) who collected the award on behalf of Piet Ferreira (Steinhoff)

Other Nominees for 2016:​

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Andrew Brooking

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Richard Stout

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Colin du Toit

2015 DealMaker of the Year

John Gnodde

Gold Medal Award

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Marylou Greig (DealMakers), Steven Engelsman (Ince), Neal Froneman (Sibanye Gold) and John Gnodde (Brait)

Other Nominees for 2015:​

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Christo Els

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Paul Roelofse

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Fradreck Shoko

2014 DealMaker of the Year

Cobus Human

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Gold Medal Award

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Steven Engelsman (Ince), Cobus Human (One Capital), Charl Keyter (Sibanye Gold), Daryl Wray (Cell C) and Marylou Greig (DealMakers)

Other Nominees for 2014:​

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Christo Els

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Paul Bondi

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Clive Potter