The BigFive Digital Story

BigFive Digital helps African and Middle Eastern (AME) media and tech companies build and take to market digital products and services for the region's small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).


To be clear, BigFive Digital doesn't serve the SME. Our constituency is the companies that build and take to market digital products for the SME.

We serve our membership through content packed with actionable insights, supported by original research, to help our members make smart choices about strategy, go to market and sales methodology.

Most critically, we help our members repeat the successes and avoid the mistakes of those around the globe who’ve been down this path.

BigFive is also building a community of publishers, agencies and technology providers to foster the development of the partnerships essential to success in this industry. We do this through our annual BigFive Summit as well as facilitating direct introductions among our members.

Our name evokes the checklist of Africa’s most majestic animals. For us, however, the name represents the five pillars of local digital commerce: location, mobile, payments, search and social. Our content and our event are focused on advancing our members’ knowledge around these five pillars.

Our Founders

BigFive’s founding leadership team represent decades of international experience in management, sales, and thought leadership in the local digital search and commerce industries.

Thabo Seopa

Co-Founder & Chairman

Paul Plant

Co-founder & Operations Director

Charles Laughlin

Co-founder & Content Director

Oscar Sousa Marques

Co-founder & Membership Director

Our Team

BigFive Digital is supported by a talented and energetic Cape Town-based team with strong backgrounds in sales, marketing, and operations at digital agencies and start-ups.


Ghia Du Plessis

Business Development


Janine Rix-Radley


Our Advisory Council

BigFive Digital has assembled a powerful team of advisors with deep experience building businesses in the AME region that address the SME market. We rely on our advisors for advice and insight as we grow BigFive Digital.

Ezana Raswork

Founder and Managing Director
Africa 118


Pedro Gomes

Managing Director
Kenya Postel Directories Ltd.

Sanaz Ameri

Head of Channel Sales, Emerging EMEA & CEE

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Wayne Foster

Managing Partner -
Egypt Yellow Pages Ltd

Sohail Nawaz MBE

Chief Executive Officer
THSA Technology Bahrain W.L.L

Trevor Nadeau

Founder & Managing Director
Local Knowledge FZE


Sandy Lohr

Chief Executive Officer