According to M&C Saatchi Abel, the 2019 awards top off a "phenomenal period of growth and success" for the brand, which will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2020. The agency says that the recognition is a 'doff of the hat' to the vision of the agency's founders, partners and staff. 

The AdFocus Awards aims to be a leading platform for agencies and individuals in the marketing and communications landscape. The awards provide individuals with the opportunity to be recognised in their respective fields — not only for their creative skills but also for their business acumen.

Mike Abel, M&C Saatchi Abel co-founder and chief executive, says that the agency is ecstatic and that the awards top off a period of immense growth underpinned by the agency's core philosophy of 'Brutal Simplicity of Thought'.

"Our unrelenting orientation as an agency has always been to add real, measurable value to our clients' businesses — from their top line, to market share and brand equity. I am very proud that, under a very capable team of leaders, we have taken these awards ahead of our 10th birthday in a few months," says Abel.

"Mashigo's Industry Leader Award is a validation of the immense impact he has had on M&C Saatchi Abel, its clients and the industry as a whole. Partnership of the Year with Nando’s proves that strategically marrying the best creative talent with the DNA of the client pays off handsomely," adds Abel.

"We are overjoyed that the significant contribution Mashigo has made to our agency — [as well as] advertising and creativity in this country as a whole — has been recognised. Mashigo is a dear friend, valued business partner and creative force in our country," Abel adds.

"I fervently believe creative solutions not only benefit the businesses of our clients but form the backbone of all interventions aimed at making South Africa a better, more inclusive and competitive country," says Mashigo.

Abel says that the agency's partnership with Nando's resonates with South Africans because the relationship is built on authenticity and trust, which allows creativity to flourish and solutions to emerge. He says that this is seen in the Nando’s Mzansipoli advert.

"The Nando's partnership has struck a chord with the public — the key ingredients being innate trust, brutal simplicity of thought, brave risk-taking (socially and politically) and mixing these with a whole lot of fun. [This] provided the space for the best people to produce the best results," Abel concludes. 

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