The top 16 youth-owned brands awards are a platform that celebrates and recognises youth excellence

Everything you need to know about YOBAs

The 2nd Annual Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards were recently launched at the classy Solo Restaurant in Sandton.

The launch was attended by members of the media, marketers and key stakeholders. Hosted by the 2022 Top 16 Youth-Owned Brand Awards winner, Pamela Mtanga, the launch served as not only an entertainment session but also an information session with the relevant stakeholders.  

The Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards are an award ceremony that celebrates young, gifted and determined brand owners. From the announcement of a new category to a two-day Festival of Youth-Owned Brands – The Gold Standard of Youth Excellence is set to be bigger than ever. The name ‘Top 16’ originates from June 16, which is Youth Day and the day that the 1967 youth took to the streets to fight for freedom.

According to the convener of the Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards Pat Mahlangu, the awards were established with the purpose of shining light on youth excellence and to challenge the narrative that youth is lazy, apathetic and entitled. 

The platform has proven to be powerful through what it has done for the previous winners and nominees. These awards have shined a light on different youth-owned brands across South Africa. This includes brands such as Delivery Ka Speed, Tshepo Jeans, Podcast and Chill, Maison Space and more.  

Here’s what you need to know about the 2023 Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards:  

  1. Two-day festival?  

Imagine a shopping mall of only South African, youth-owned brands? For the first time in the African continent, the largest number of only youth-owned brands will be housed under one roof for over two days; 14 and 15 June 2023.  

  1. What are the categories?  

The Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards include a wide variety of categories, namely Accessories, Beverages, Agriculture, Beauty, Apparel, Homeware, Media, NPO Charities, Education, Personalities and Influencers, Footwear, Food, Travel and Tourism, Technology, Services and newly introduced category, Health and Wellness. 

  1. Is it only in Gauteng?  

The Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards team will be embarking on a nationwide roadshow to create more awareness about the awards and to educate the youth about the importance of marketing and branding. Provinces such as KZN, Western Cape, Gauteng and Limpopo can expect to be a part of these masterclasses. 

  1. How do you nominate?   

When the inaugural Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards were launched, they were housed under the Pat on Brands website. For 2023 and beyond all the information about the awards will be available on the brand-new website: The public can nominate their favourite youth-owned brands via the website. Nominations close on 20 April 2023.  

  1. Who qualifies? 

In order for brands to qualify for the Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards, they need to meet the following criteria:  

  • Must be owned and run by people between the ages of 18 and 35. 
  • The brand must be older than 1 year 
  • The brand must have a website (not mandatory) with the brand name as its domain. 
  • The brand must be active on social media 
  • Must be operating in one (or more) of the listed categories. 
  • Must be South African 
  1. How do you become a part of the judges?  

The 2022 judges will be retained, however, due to the high expected number of entries, there is an open call for additional judges to be nominated to join the jury. Judges can be nominated on Jury Nominations – Top16YOBA 

  1. How do you become a partner?  

Various sponsorship opportunities are available for corporates that are looking to support youth-owned brands. Last year’s sponsors included companies such as Sakhumnotho, Reveel, MTN Pulse, Lerato Agency, Khumalo and Mabuya, Global Business School of Entrepreneurship, NikNaks, UJFM and Black Crown. Email to become a part of this innovative experience. Last year’s sponsors had the chance to be mentioned through the PR we received, which amounted to the total PR value of R2,424,641.61. 

 The 2023 nominations are now open!  

You can watch the 2022 Top 16 youth-owned brands awards on: Top 16 Youth-Owned Brands Awards 2022 brought you by Sakhumnotho| Hulisani Ravhele | Thebe Ikalafeng 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Start typing and press Enter to search