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Eventworx: Kim Winstanley

In an industry renowned for promising the earth and delivering the distinctly average, one events company is determined to do things differently.

Juliet Pitman



Kim Winstanley

Kim Winstanley, managing director, founder and chief ‘event architect’ of Eventworx, knows there is more to a great event than bells and whistles that wow the audience. “There can be no doubt that the creative idea is vital – people are invited to so many events these days that you have to make each one original, exciting and stimulating to attract people’s attention and hold their interest. But if you ask me what makes for a successful event, I’d say that first and foremost it needs to meet the business objectives. You can put on the sexiest event in the world, one that’s loved by guests, but if it didn’t achieve what it needed to for the business, then I’d consider it a failure.”

It might not be a popular view in an industry that tends to place all its eggs in the creative basket, but there can be little doubt that it’s music to the ears of clients. “I believe companies are tired of paying exorbitant amounts of money for events that sound fantastic at the pitch stage, but that are a little lack-lustre in the actual delivery. It’s made the market understandably cynical about our industry,” she says.

The makings of a successful event

This is why she’s created a company that balances creativity with the need to deliver on a business objective and work within certain constraints. Eventworx’s business model is based on the understanding that four key things affect the outcome of an event.

Winstanley explains: “Firstly, there’s the big idea, the ‘wow’ factor – the thing that engages guests, energises staff and makes sure your message is remembered. Secondly, there is the collective talent of everyone in our company, and the expertise they bring to the table. These are the people who ensure that the bold ideas are matched by delivery. Then there are our business relationships with our clients, our network of suppliers and our extended team who are hand-picked based on their expertise to deliver different aspects of the event.
“Finally, and this is the part that many event companies don’t take into consideration, there are certain fixed realities – things like a limited budget, time constraints, power supply, the recent example of the vagaries of air travel. These are the things you cannot change.”

Finding a balance

Success, she says, is achieved through the balance of all four elements. “No one is more or less important than another, and if you fail to focus on one, the event won’t work and the client will walk away disappointed.” She sees herself and her team as ‘event architects’. “More goes into a building than its aesthetics, and events are the same. Both require sound structural foundations. To get that right you need an architect, not just a builder. You need someone who understands how the whole hangs together, where the stressors will lie, and how to overcome them. That’s what we do for events.”

Living the idea

The Eventworx model is encapsulated in its logo but it’s also something that the company ‘lives’, and unpacks to each client at every pitch. “Clients are used to being blown away by the big creative idea, and promised the earth at a pitch, so they often don’t expect to talk about the less glamorous stuff. But we lay everything on the table upfront. We have a realistic discussion about the constraints of budget, and a very business-focused discussion of what they need the event to achieve for their business,” Winstanley indicates.

It might make Eventworx more conservative than its competitors, but it’s also helped the company build long-term relationships with clients who trust them to deliver on anything from low-budget to big ticket luxury events. And during the recession, when the events and marketing industry saw budgets slashed, these relationships proved vital. “Clients may have had smaller budgets, but they kept coming to us because they knew we would deliver a successful event that met their objectives, didn’t waste money and worked within their constraints,” says Winstanley.

Player: Kim Winstanley
Est: 2001
Contact: +27 11 646 3223

Juliet Pitman is a features writer at Entrepreneur Magazine.


25 Of The Most Successful Business Ideas In South Africa

Find out who’s making waves in numerous industries and how they managed to differentiate themselves in local and international industries.

Nicole Crampton



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“Disruption is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition, and rejecting the way things are supposed to be. Disruption goes way beyond advertising, it forces you to think about where you want your brand to go and how to get there,” says Richard Branson.

South Africa has its fair share of innovative and disruptive businesses taking both local and international industries by storm. From cutting edge space technology to reimagined logistics, and innovative business models, here are 25 of the most successful business ideas in South Africa:

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Colin Timmis Says ‘Position Yourself For Success By Starting With The Numbers’

People pay first who they feel pressure from, so people will pay you when they feel pressure from you.






Entrepreneur Colin Timmis founded South Africa’s first cloud accounting practice in 2011, Real Time Accounting. Then, a few years after being appointed as South Africa’s first Xero partner Colin became Xero Country Manager South Africa. Xero is the emerging global leader of online accounting software that connects small businesses to their advisors and other services.

Related: Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

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Company Posts

Two 20 Year Olds Reshape Entrepreneur Landscape With New Social Investment Platform

The Merge vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

Merge Connect




Vital Stats

It’s no secret that finding the right investor for your venture is a challenge that most entrepreneurs face. The current process of finding investment is one that is outdated, and limits entrepreneurs due to a lack of time, and network that is needed to find the right investor. But, this doesn’t have to be the case in today’s digital society, says Zander Matthee and Brandon Bate, co-founders of Merge.

“By making the Internet the middleman, we are able to connect with each other much simpler and faster than before” was Zander’s response. “We have taken advantage of this, and have created a digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors” added Brandon.

Merge is a social platform that connects entrepreneurs and investors. It aims to simplify, refine and accelerate the process of finding investment for entrepreneurs, and the process of finding investment opportunities for investors. From idea to developed, the platform allows entrepreneurs to present a brief outline of their venture to a network of all investor types. While doing this, entrepreneurs are able to browse through, and connect with investor profiles that suit their requirements.

Related: 8 Codes Of Success That Helped Priven Reddy of Kagiso Interactive Media Achieve A Networth Of Over R4 Billion

From Private Investors to Venture Capital, and everything in between, Merge allows all investor types to join. Investors have the opportunity to personalise their feed to suit their investment preferences, and will be able to connect with innovative businesses – that are looking for investment – at their fingertips. Only once there is a mutual interest in each other, are users able to enter a secure private chat where they can discuss further and share documents under the protection of a digital NDA.

The two boys became good friends during their time in high school at St Stithians Boys College. However, it was only in their last year, 2016, that they decided to pursue their dreams and create the platform. They didn’t know how to code, so rather ironically, they needed some form of investment to get the platform off the ground.


“We knew we had a mountain to climb, but we believed in our vision and that we were really trying to make a difference, and if we could get others to see that, they would be onboard.” said Zander.

Related: Lessons From The Rich And Famous: Manage Your Money Like Oprah To Avoid Going Into Debt Like Nicholas Cage

Chris Peters is one of these individuals that bought into their vision, and became Merge’s first investor. As a successful entrepreneur and part time investor , Chris saw how much value the platform could bring to all entrepreneurs and investors alike. His marketing and strategic background gave him insight into how Merge could play a vital role in a lucrative space, Brand involvement.

“Entrepreneurship and SME development are two key factors that drive economic growth in developing countries like South Africa. That is why brands are currently getting involved, and looking to support entrepreneurs through various means. We have built a platform that allows these brands to successfully market, and execute on the programmes they have created to assist entrepreneurs.” said Chris

Merge was created to assist all entrepreneurs and investors in finding exactly what they are looking for, regardless of age, race, sex, financial position or social status. That is why anybody can sign-up as an entrepreneur. As long as you are determined and willing to work for your dreams. For too long has the investor space been seen as an “elite club for the select few”, and Merge is here to change that. Whether you’ve gotten your bonus at the end of the year and looking for new investment opportunities, or are an active investor, you can sign-up. Whether you’re currently working, or a retired industry leader, you can join as a mentor.

Their vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

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