Our Team


Meet our founder, Lucas Van Der Merwe

Born in Sasolburg, raised in Rustenburg, Lucas matriculated in 1992 and completed his degree in Human Resources and Labour Law by 1995. Upon graduation, Lucas had managed to pay for his entire degree by being employed as a cleaner in a local hospital. While working for A company practicing Labour Law, Lucas met a man in the gym one day who gave him the idea that would forever change his business ideals. And so Ziphi Nkomo was born.

Beginning with six employees at a retail client, Lucas would arrive in Thembisa at 04h00 each morning to recruit under flashlight another suitable employee day by day. By night, Lucas would wade through admin, invoicing and management of the sites on his own, only to return to Thembisa by 4am.

By 2005, Ziphi had over 400 employees in 4 sites and by 2010, over 2500 employees in 8 sites. Today, 2017, Lucas has carefully handpicked and crafted a team that has enabled Ziphi Nkomo to grow to an astounding 7500 employees in over 35 sites, spanning 4 provinces. Over the years, Ziphi has branched into a Group of Companies  to provide services to the “Big 5 “Retailers and various other clients solely by the founding majority shareholder.

Lucas lives according to “the power of now” and has over the many years infiltrated this system into the ethical conduct of the business… ensuring that Ziphi Nkomo 1 Group Of Companies has maintained its exceptional standards of service excellence and productivity.


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Meet Elizma, Ziphi’s CEO

Born in Thabazimbi, Elizma matriculated in 1997 in the North West, and spent 18 years in the Retail and Labour Industry as a Warehouse Manager and Labour Consultant. Her numerous responsibilities and extensive experience in Retail and Distribution Management have rewarded her countless awards over the years.

With Ziphi, Elizma has been the Director in the Western Cape for five years and oversees all aspects of the Ziphi Nkomo 1 Group of Companies ideals within this region; including all Operations and requirements thereof, Recruitment, Administrative and HR/IR and Payroll Functions as well as Customer Care.

After a successful career over the past 23 years in the Retail & Supply chain, Elizma now enjoys coaching and advising all employee’s as how to achieve the same goals and objectives that she so passionately has overcome. Constantly inspired to develop her employee’s objectives and own personal goals through team synergy, Elizma is a great supporter of staff wellbeing, client satisfaction and maintaining the standards that Ziphi ensures. A true asset to the team…

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Meet Pieter our Operations Director of Kwa-Zulu Natal

Pieter matriculated in 1999 from Wonderfontein High School, and studied his Bcom Accounting degree at the Potchefstroom University having been awarded a lifetime membership to the Golden Key International Honour Society for grading in the top 15% of students in his degree.

Pieter’s passion for working with people led him to being co-owner of a team building company servicing clients such as Red Bull, Vodacom, Pioneerfoods, Adcock Ingram and CTI to name a few. Pieter followed this passion to involving himself in charitable work guiding and coaching children ages 14-18, and has consistently continued to make a difference in the lives of people surrounding him.

As a change in course, Pieter got involved in the FMCG industry, which soon led him to joining the Ziphi team in 2012 as GM of the Shoprite Centurion Warehouse. Pieter excelled in this position, and after many months of travelling to and from KZN and Gauteng, managing both the Gauteng and KZN districts, he was offered the position as Operations Director of Kwa-Zulu Natal in 2014, which saw him relocating to Durban.

Pieter’s positivity and enthusiasm for growing the future, not only for Ziphi, but as being a major role-player in providing an entry point for first-time job seekers as well as part time students looking to build their career and develop themselves is what gives Pieter the daily drive to raise Ziphi’s flag high.

“It’s definitely the most rewarding feeling seeing and being part of human growth and development as well as being an integral part of this countries economy and having a positive contribution to it.”

Pieter is proud that 2017 has been the most fruitful year yet for the KZN region in placing the most assignees to date, and he cannot wait to push the limits further…

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Meet our Human Resources Director & Managing Director, Craven Alexander – the family man!

Craven was born in the North West, and graduated from university in 1992 with an Industrial Psychology and Human Resources degree, and again in 1998 with a degree in Labour Relations.

Craven began his career as HR Officer in Training at Anglogold in 1992, and was responsible for the Human Resources and Labour Relations function until 2001. After spending a few months in the UK as part of an immigration necessity, he returned to South Africa and joined the Ziphi Nkomo team as an external Industrial Relations Consultant until 2015, where he was asked to join the team in a permanent appointment of HR Director; responsible for the HR and IR function for the Group Of Companies.

A joint venture between Ziphi, and Craven himself, has resulted in Craven leading the deliverance of leadership and sales training initiatives in the UAE and GCC countries worldwide. The training is focused to both junior and senior management roles, and encorporates a wide variety of clients to date.

Craven is also a registered soft skills and sales trainer with SETA, and is certified as an Assessor and Moderator in a wide variety of soft skills training programs.





Meet Benni

Benni was born in Kuruman and matriculated in Kimberley before moving to Pretoria to complete his studies in Sports Science.

Benni began his own business shortly thereafter within the fitness world, and met Lucas in 2008. Sharing a common interest in fitness, Lucas and Benni quickly became friends, and Benni’s enthusiasm and interest in the corporate world presented him the opportunity of getting involved with Ziphi as a Non-Executive Director.

Benni has been a true asset to Ziphi with his eagerness to learn, and accepting new challenges daily.

Benni’s personal achievements in the fitness world have continued to soar, and it must be mentioned that Benni has won numerous titles, including the likes of WPF National Winner, Bodies For Africa, Gauteng North and HH Classic Champion as well as his most recent win of Gauteng North Welterweight Champion.

Ziphi is eager to get Benni more involved in exciting projects in the near future.


Midrand Office:


51 Douglas Road
Glen Austin


Tel: 011 025 3354
Fax: 086 616 6088
E-mail: hq@ziphi.co.za

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