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Sanlam Knysna Awards – the waiting is over!

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The voting phase of the 2015/2016 Sanlam Knysna Awards ended on January 17 with no less than 7,352 votes being received from the voting public in the greater Knysna area – a massive increase from last year.

The Awards reach their climax on Thursday 4th February when the winners will be announced at an exciting gala awards dinner at the Simola Hotel. The top three nominees who gained the greatest number of votes in each of the 12 categories have been contacted directly by the principal sponsor, Sanlam.

Event organisers are thrilled at this year’s response. Pieter Cloete says: “The phenomenal growth of the Sanlam Knysna Awards goes to show that local people are willing and ready to recognize and applaud individuals and organisations who continue to make Knysna a wonderful place in which to live, work and visit.”

Everyone’s a winner

Pieter continued: “There are no losers in the Awards process. Every person and organisation nominated should feel pleased and proud that the public appreciates their contribution to our society. Being a finalist and, ultimately, a category winner is just the icing on the cake.”

The finalists are (in alphabetical order):

Best Tourism Activity Award

Mosaic Village and Outdoor Market

The Jaguar Simola Hillclimb

The Leisure Island Festival,


Best Tourism Establishment Award

Lakeside Lodge & Spa

Leisure Isle Lodge

Pine Lake Marina


Best Eatery Award presented by Barnies Trading

Caffé Mario

East Head Caffé

Freshline Fisheries


Social Media & Online Marketing Award presented by Sozo Digital

Elmarie “Elle” Redman

Penny Foyn (Knysna Golden Girls Community)

Travelbug Rose


Local Charity Award

ePap Childrens’ Feeding Project

Knysna Animal Welfare Society

The Knysna Basin Project


Best Community Leader Award

Cheryl Britz

Christian Jacobs

Marshall Laminie


Sanlam Small Business Award

e4 Electrical

Nine on Grey



Sanlam Business Woman of the Year Award

Ingrid Diesel

Hanlie van Niekerk

Suzi Bilyard


Sanlam Business Man of the Year Award

Carl Ballan

John Metelerkamp

Michael Wilbraham


Young Entrepreneur Award

Duncan Kane

Duran de Villiers

Ian Sparks


Best Service Award

Allsound Security

E4 Electrical

The Garden Route Eye Clinic


Proudly Knysna Award

Magnetic South

Postcards from Knysna

The Jaguar Simola Hillclimb


Finalists, their nominators, friends and families are urged to book their seats for 4th February when the winner in each category will be revealed. Tickets cost R250 per person and include drinks and snacks on arrival, a sumptuous buffet dinner and entertainment.


The event begins at 6.30pm SHARP and will be strictly black tie. Only 120 tickets are available, so to avoid disappointment, BOOK ONLINE NOW at:


Vote for Knysna’s finest!

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The voting stage of the 2015 Sanlam Knysna Awards is now well and truly underway. These annual Awards give local individuals a unique opportunity to recognise and reward the achievements of enterprises, organisations and individuals who are making an outstanding contribution to our community.

So, if you live or work within the greater Knysna, now’s the time to have your say. With 133 nominations received (41 more than last year) competition is bound to be fierce in all 12 categories – and every vote will count.

The categories are:
Sanlam Business Man of the Year, Sanlam Business Women of the Year, Sanlam Young Entrepreneur, Community Leader, Barnies Trading Best Eatery; Best Tourism Activity sponsored by Knysna & Partners, Best Tourism Establishment sponsored by Knysna & Partners, Charity Award, Proudly Knysna Award sponsored by Knysna Municipality, Service Excellence Award, Sanlam Small Business Award and the Social Media & Online Award sponsored by Sozo.

The list of nominated companies, organisations & individuals makes for interesting reading with many new names featuring for the first time.

These include: packaging company Knysna Wrap-it, So-Ca Distribution, Peter Berman of Scratch Golf, Janet Ebersohn of Ecoroute, horticultural and landscape expert Dylan Handel, Marshall Laminie of Knysna Alcohol & Drug Centre and Fatti Blake, founder of the Facebook group ‘Postcards from Knysna’.

Spoilt for choice
Pieter Cloete, from Sozo Digital who has organised the Awards since their inception three years ago, commented:

“Voters will be spoilt for choice this year. It’s exciting to see so many new individuals and organisations being nominated for the first time. We’re truly grateful to all our local individuals who have taken the time to bring to our attention the outstanding work being done by individuals, companies and charities in Knysna.

“The number of nominees in many of the categories is quite staggering. For example, we have no less than 18 in the Best Service Award, 17 in the Sanlam Small Business Award and 13 in the Proudly Knysna category. It’s heartwarming to know that service excellence and the entrepreneurial spirit of our young people is on the rise! The high number of nominees for the Proudly Knysna Award only goes to re-enforce our belief that our town is a truly unique place to live and work.”

The public voting phase began on the 15th of November and, within two days, more than 1,500 online votes had been received via the Awards’ website.

To cast yours, simply go to

Remember, you must have a valid email address and can only vote once for one nominee in each category. (Full terms & conditions are published on the Awards website.)

If you don’t have an email address, you can write a list of the nominees you’d like to vote for, adding your full name, address and contact number. Place it in a sealed envelope and drop it off at the Knysna FM studio in Woodmill Lane.

The last day to cast your votes is 17 January 2016. After that, the three nominees with most votes in each category will be informed of their success and the eventual winners will be announced at a gala awards dinner at the Simola Golf & Country Estate Hotel on 4 February.


There’s still time to nominate Knysna’s finest

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Nominations for the 2015 Sanlam Knysna Awards will close on Saturday 31 October.

And, although it will be Halloween, there’ll be no tricks – just treats for the award winners!

So, if you know of a local business, organization or individual that deserves public recognition, now’s the time to act.

These prestigious awards are voted on by the public and are designed to honour and reward exceptional local companies, business, community leaders, brands and industry players who are making a positive contribution to our town and the greater Knysna area.

You can nominate entrants in UP TO THREE of the following categories:

  • Small Business Awards
  • Business Women of the Year Award
  • Business Man of the Year Award
  • Best Eatery Award
  • Best Tourism Establishment Award
  • Best Community Leader Award
  • Charity Award
  • Best Tourism Activity, Festival and Local Market Award
  • Proudly Knysna Award
  • Young Entrepreneur Award
  • Service Excellence Award
  • Social Media and Online Marketing Award

A Lifetime Achievement Award, made at the judges’ discretion, may also be presented to a local individual or organization they believe has made a significant contribution to Knysna.

Making it easy

The nomination process couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is go on-line and visit

You can make as many nominations as you wish, as long as you don’t nominate the same company, organization or individual in more than three categories. The only conditions are that entrants must be located in and operate from the greater Knysna area (including Sedgefield, Rheenendal, Harkerville and surrounds), be registered – if applicable – with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC), be in possession of a valid Tax Clearance Certificate and comply with all relevant laws and regulations of Government and/or industry associations pertaining to their sphere of activity.

Public participation

Awards organizer Pieter Cloete, is encouraging all local people to take part: “These awards depend on public participation. I’m certain that every person who lives in the greater Knysna area has their own favourite restaurants, companies, individuals or charitable organizations, etc. that go the extra mile to provide an excellent service. This is the community’s chance to thank them in a unique and meaningful way.”

“The awards are now in their third year. With increased public support, we can make this year’s event the biggest and best so far”, he added.

What happens next?

After all the nominations have been received on 31 October, the public will be asked to cast their votes in each category. This process will take place between 15 November 2015 and 17 January 2016. The three organizations/individuals in each category who have won the most votes will be invited to a sparkling gala awards evening at the Simola Hotel on 4 February when the award winners will be announced and prizes presented.


By | News and Updates | One Comment

The Inaugural Knysna Awards aim to recognize business men and women, entrepreneurs and community leaders and people determined to spur change in our community.

“We strongly believe that enterprises, entrepreneurs and individuals – which advance our towns quest for innovation, quality and productivity- should be recognized”, event organiser, Pieter Cloete said. “Job creation efforts such as local manufacturing needs to be acknowledged, rewarded and encouraged.” Read More

The Knysna Awards 2013

By | News and Updates, Uncategorized | No Comments

We are proud to announce the inaugural Knysna Awards that will take place in October 2013.
The awards aim to recognise Knysna enterprises which: produce quality products and the efforts of these enterprises and entrepreneurs place Knysna in a competitive and beneficial position, particularly with regard to technological innovation, trade and investment. It also aims to recongnise community leaders and people determent to spur change in their community, and developing a culture of giving. We would also like to honor brands that are truly Knysna. Read More