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Pavlo Phitidis


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Pavlo Phitidis

CEO, Aurik Business Incubator

Born in Johannesburg South Africa

In the beginning - 5 years as owner and shareholder in 3 Entertainments Businesses to pay for studies. Full of mischief!

Then I got a job - 2 years with Business Partners as a Senior Loan Advisor assessing 93 business finance loan applications in retail, wholesale, manufacturing across 7 different sectors. What an insight and learning experience!

Then the turnarounds came - Bought into 3 companies for turnaround and sale in the import/export sports goods and brand agency business, fashion eyewear brand agency distribution business and micro-enterprise franchise development marketing business.

Now building a dream - Established Aurik Business Incubator by starting, building and selling 12 businesses (2 failures, 2 listings on JSE and 8 company sales). This created the business development support programs that we provide to support entrepreneurs in their quest to build successful entrepreneurial businesses. It has worked and today (2011) we work with over 570 entrepreneurs (from start up to businesses turning R100m) to help grow their businesses into assets of value.

In addition, I work extensively with big business to turn their Enterprise Development and Preferential Procurement spend into strategic business opportunities, scoring business results and compliance points simultaneously.

Finally, an entrepreneurial evangelist (all that means is that I believe that entrepreneurs can solve all our problems and that they are the best option for growing South Africa's potential) - I work with companies wanting to develop products, services and insights into the fastest growing business segment in South Africa, the SME's that trade with turnovers from R0-R100m. This work includes speaking engagements, seminars, competitions, workshops, campaigns, media work and promotions.

Contact details

O: +27-11-447-5575

Web presence

Business Address

132 Jan Smuts Ave, Johannesburg, South Africa, 2196

Professional details

Current Position(s)

Director | Partner 3 Contract Finance
2010 - present

Payroll funding for recruiters in the IT industry

Director | SIFE South Africa
2009 - present

SIFE establishes student programs on university campuses around the world. The programs incorporate faculty advisors and a local business advisory boards that support student teams in applying business concepts in order to develop community outreach projects that improve the quality of life and standard of living for people in need.

SIFE teams’ projects address a variety of topics, such as market economics, entrepreneurship, financial literacy, personal success skills, environmental sustainability and business ethics.

By using the business concepts they are learning in the classroom to help others, SIFE students develop stronger business and leadership skills, as well as a sense of service and responsibility to the community and world around them.

Director | Afropolitan Properties (Pty) Limited
2008 - present

Property and Real Estate

This property group focuses on acquisitions mainly in the residential sector that particularly services the middle income urban consumer.

Director | Aurik Investment Holdings (Pty) Limited
2000 - present

Founder and Director responsibile for identifying new investment opportunites by way of start-ups, turnarrounds and early stage ventures for the organisation. South Africa has a particularly challenging new venture environment with many obstacles created by its historical past still preventing the emergence of a truly competitive small business environment. We look for opportunites that can be taken from early stage to listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange within a 5 year period of time.

Previous Position(s)

Director | Smart Gym (Pty) Ltd
2005 - 2009

Medical, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

Director responsibile for new business development, sponsorship and lifestyle extensions. Smart Gym is the leading helath and fitness brand targeting the fastest growing consumer segement in South Africa, a market that before had never had access to such a service. As such, this consumer segement is demanding, vocal, savvy and smart and keeping apace with their changing lifestyles is a key success factor for the Smart Gym business. Exited through sale of the business to management in 2009.

Director | Social Innovations (Pty) Ltd
2004 - 2010

Consulting and Project Management

Director responsible for identifying and developing new social projects and solutions that support business objectives. Social Innovations beleives that business has a role to play in the improvement of society and that responsibile corporate citizenship not only benefits communites but investors, government and society at large. We specialise in innovating unique customised corporate social programs to achieve this goal.

Director | Mira Networks
2003 - 2007

ICT and Telecommunications

Founder and CEO commercialising the start-up venture into the largest B2B mobile data aggregator in South Africa.

Educational history


University of Cape Town

1985 - 1987

B.Com - Building


media exposure

702, Cape talk | 2010

Every Thursday night is entrepreneur night with Bruce Whitfield on The Money Show.

Entrepreneur SA with 702 and Cape Talk

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