The GEM Group Story:
The Gem Group of companies is a focused, black owned integrated media, communications and hospitality group established in 2002, with its headquarters in Sandton, South Africa. The group has been refocused over the past years as an event management specialist of choice to a diversified media group with added activities in hospitality. The new Gem Group has once again significantly enhanced its performance within its focused areas. In a period marked by major economic changes in advertising spending, we continued to grow at a rapid pace. We saw further consolidation of our key ongoing strategies through leveraging and benchmarking ourselves against the best.
Gem Group has long been on the journey to embrace change, and we have enriched our culture and values a great deal over the past few years. In doing so, we aspire to a flat, non hierarchical structure in which our people are encouraged to take responsibility and accountability for running the business together. We believe our consistent performance success is largely attributable to the contribution that our staff and management give.
The birth of GEM Group of Companies:
The Gem Group was founded by Lebo Gunguluza - now Group Chairman who recognized the need for business to business media opportunities with special focus on the private sector, and the fact that this market segment was broader and diverse.
He used his experience primarily from SABC, as well as other media and advertising related organisations that he worked for, to launch his first company that sold media space in publishing and corporate events. The company was named Corporate Fusion, a corporate communication and events management company. Within 18 months, this company that was run from a townhouse with a single telephone line was generating over R2 Million. Gunguluza formed another company called GIDE, a youth development and career guidance development company in partnership with his brother who also joined the growing group of companies. A year later the turnover had doubled, and Gunguluza decided to move into proper offices and register Gunguluza Enterprises and Media, known today as the Gem Group, which was established to overlook the new divisions and growing group of companies.
The Gem Group has recently partnered in a R6,2-billion development deal in Gauteng, which is 10 minutes away from the OR Tambo International Airport. The first phase of this development kicks off in November 2018 with a R330 Million Hotel development. The groups hospitality interests are managed and marketed by Izani Hotels, a wholly owned division of the GEM Group. In 2011, the Gem Group partnered with the Singer Hotel Group to build & manage hotels as well as invest in more hotel developments. This partnership also launched a black owned travel agency under the 'XL Travel Management' Umbrella operating in Cape Town and Johannesburg called Izani Travel. Izani Travel has won a number of tenders since it started bidding for government tenders 2 years ago.
In 2014, Gem Group launched it's investment arm 'Izani Capital Investments' , the group's venture capital and investment arm, which is already involved in a number of deals including a R230 Million infrastructure venture in the Northern Cape and R4.2 billion rand retail project in Ballito next to the King Shaka International Airport. Izani Capital in partnership with YIED (Youth Innovation Entrepreneurship Design Institute) has established the Izani Fintech Accelarator Programme and the Izani Capital Incubation Fund to support and fund tech start-ups and Fintech Solutions in Africa. Izani Capital through Mr. Gunguluza's participation on Dragons Den TV show has made further investments into other smaller and innovative companies to drive the groups innovation agenda themed ' The Future Is Here'.
Izani Capital also supports black entrepreneurs and companies in Africa who have won tenders or contracts but cannot deliver them due to lack of finance with invoice discounting. and contract financing. Read more about Izani Capital
Gem Group interests in Events and Communications has remained very strong, with the Launch of Intouch Africa Events and Intouch Consulting, a specialist events and communications agency which has given him the ultimate position of being the most powerful 100% black owned events production house in South Africa, servicing over 42 corporate and government related events every year. As a result of this, the Gem Group partnered with Moove, an events furniture hire and decor company, which houses over 7000 units of decor and furniture, with a manufacturing facility for customised requests. Intouch Africa recently hosted Russel Simmons in partnership with Two Tone Global and also launched the first African Leaders for Change Foundation to honor global leaders contributing to Africa working with Akon Lighting Africa.