Founder and chief of DNA Brand Architects, Sylvester Chauke. Photo: Supplied.

CAPE TOWN – Soweto-born architect and founder and chief of DNA Brand Architects, Sylvester Chauke at the age of 37 has made the 2018 list of 100 Most Influential Young Africans.

Now in its 3rd year, the annual prestigious list focuses on young individuals who are doing good and promoting the positive image of Africa across the globe.

The list features young politicians, activists, entrepreneurs, entertainers, digital influencers, philanthropists and athletes across 10 distinct categories.

“Too often, we hear about the doom and gloom of the African continent and its youth, so it is wonderful that there is a movement that highlights entrepreneurs and leaders on the continent, moving us forward into a narrative of excellence and innovation," said Chauke.

“Being part of only two South Africans in the business category of influential young people in Africa is humbling. I do, however, wish that the business category had an even stronger representation, understanding the dire need and challenges, particularly in my country where youth unemployment is at a staggering 47 percent.”

Facts on Chauke:

  • He obtained his Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Honors for Marketing Communication at the University of Johannesburg.
  • In his second year of University, he took an internship at DraftFCB, working on the Vodacom and FNB accounts, among others.
  • Between 2006 - 2010, He was the National Marketing Manager at Nandos and then in 2010, he went on to be the Director for the Marketing and Communication for MTV Networks and Africa. 
  • In 2012, Sylvester established DNA Brand Architects; a marketing and brand consultancy that works with some of the most revered brands on the continent.
  • He is also one of the 22 young leaders from around the world to sit at the Advisory Council for the World Economic Forum Global Shapers.
  • His most recent achievement was the All Africa Young Business Leader of the Year award for 2017. 

He has the following awards:

  • Strategic Marketing Magazine – Marketer on the Rise (2009)
  • Mail & Guardian Top 300 Young South Africans (2009)
  • GQ Magazine Most Influential Young Man under 35 (2009)
  • Best Leadership Award, MTV Networks Africa (2011)
  • Men’s Health Magazine, 20 Most Influential Men (2014)
  • World Economic Forum Global Shapers (2011 – present) 
  • Curator of the WEF Global Shapers Johannesburg Hub (2013 – 2014)
  • Board Member: South African State Theatre (2014 - to date)
  • Council Member: Africa Month; Department of Arts and Culture (2015 – to date)
  • SA Premier Business Awards, Young Entrepreneur of the Year (2015)
  • BBQ -Young Achiever of the Year (2015)
  • Oliver Top Empowered Young Achiever of the Year (2016)
More of South Africa’s cream of the crop who made the list in other categories include politician and scholar, Dr. Mbuyiseni Ndlozi and member of the DA’s KZN legislature, Mbali Ntuli in the Law & Governance category alongside, Medical Officer Dr. Sandile Kubheka in the Science and Technology category and philanthropist, Nomzamo Mbatha in the Lifestyle category.