Our company was founded and is headed up by Douw van der Walt, a HR professional with 25+ years of experience. He has worked in several globally admired businesses, from the lowest level to executive.
He was previously the Director: Human Resources for Sumitomo Rubber SA (Pty) Ltd, responsible for human resources for South Africa and Africa for almost 10 years. Before that he held senior human resources roles within ABI, which was part of the SABMiller group of companies (now ABInbev).
His knowledge and experience include being part of the senior and executive management committees of these organisations. He served on Risk Committees, Social and Ethics Committees and as Chairman of the Management Committee for Retirement Funds.
Qualifications include a B. Comm Degree from the University of Potchefstroom (now Northwest), majoring in Business Economics, Industrial Psychology and Sociology. He Obtained a Post Graduate Certificate in Industrial Relations (Cum Laude). In 2010, completed an Executive Leadership Development Programme in India through Nelson Cohen, a USA based leadership consultancy.
In the 13 years with ABI, the Softdrinks Division of SABMiller (now AB InBev), he worked in sales and human resources. Advancing from managing human resources in a small depot to regional responsibility for KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. He was accountable for the integration of two separate regions into one, and establishing a unified culture and identity, which involved organisational change and restructuring processes.
At Sumitomo Rubber SA, he joined at a time when the company was going through a tremendous amount of change, having just been through an acquisition with an Indian global tyre company, Apollo Tyres Ltd. In the first few years they were focussed on integrating two different cultures, introducing new corporate policies and practices, as well as normalising employment relations. He was involved in acquisitions and disposals by Sumitomo Rubber Industries of Japan. This process involved the separation of systems, policies and process, as well integration processes post-merger.
He is an experienced, seasoned human resources practitioner. The development and growth of people drives his passion for people achieving their inherent potential and with that the progression in their careers.
Some of his most notable achievements are:
- As a member of the ABI Management teams, awarded “Bottler of the Year” a prestigious merit certification by Coca-Cola Southern Africa on several occasions.
- Recognised by the HR Director of ABI, as the Best Overall Human Resources Practitioner.
- The tyre industry wage negotiations of 2013 and 2016, which settled within mandate, without industrial action, which was not accomplished for many years.
- Part of Executive at Sumitomo Rubber SA (Pty) Ltd. that approved the investment decision of a R2bn expansion project. It required detailed talent management and change management planning to ensure support is in place to assist the successful delivery of the project.
Professional Associations: Memberships with Institute of Directors in South Africa (IODSA), SA Board of People Practices (SABPP) and Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry NPC.
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