Sydney Paulden meets the new Country Manager for the London officeThe new Country Manager for the South African Tourism Office in London is Lungi Morrison. I met her at EIBTM, where she told me that Lungi is short for Nomalungelo. Be warned - the translation of that is ‘Woman of Strength’ and she is aptly named. I came away from interviewing Lungi completely convinced that South Africa is set for a very powerful presence on the London scene for the five years of her contract.
Lungi is not your typical civil servant. She has an impressive track record in the private sector, specialising in communications and product branding. Her previous posts have been with organisations such as Nestle and the global brand marketing agency Added Value.
‘Britain is South Africa’s key market for MICE business’, she says, ‘and I see my job as accentuating the positive, rejuvenating and maintaining the spirit that exists between our two countries.’
She talks in terms of a ‘Triple Bottom Line’. By this, she elucidates for my benefit, she means that South Africa can offer facilities for green events; with people who are willing and capable of meeting requirements within budget; and the capability to achieve the event’s business objectives.
‘We have the venues, the people and the business knowhow’, she sums up.
Lungi has officially been the UK Country Manager for South African Tourism since August, but has been in head office in Johannesburg absorbing everything she could about South Africa’s venues and matching them with the potential of the UK market. She is now firmly locked on to ambitious targets and intends to make a difference. I am willing to bet she will.