Meet the Team
Afriforesight has a multi-disciplinary research team whose expertise represents all the links in the commodity value chain, from extraction to market.
Our professional competence ranges from engineering, geology, chemistry, processing, to financial accounting and international economics.
A dedicated researcher & forecaster, Jacques is esteemed for his wide knowledge of global trends and the world of commodities. An economist by training, he obtained his BCom (Hons) in Economics from the University of Johannesburg, before joining Trust Bank (now ABSA) and then the Bureau for Economic Research (BER).
His innovative approach to forecasting and business makes Jacques a much wanted strategic adviser and he has consequently facilitated and delivered on numerous ad hoc projects for top organisations in South Africa.
Jacques founded Afriforesight in 1996 with the vision of establishing a world class commodity and input costs forecasting institute in Africa. His ultimate goal is to leverage Afriforesight's intellectual capital in working towards a better SA economy and make a difference in the development of Africa’s people.
Head of Research
Nathan holds a BSc in Mathematics and a BCom Hons degree in Economics from UCT, specialising in General Macroeconomic theory. At Afriforesight, Nathan forecasts the outlook for hydrocarbons and particularly the development of gas infrastructure in Africa. He also researches manganese and the following input costs: ammonia, explosives, rubber, tyres, fuel and bitumen. He is an expert in survey data analysis and incorporating the findings into complex mathematical models. Nathan played an active role in building and fine tuning the Mining Phakisa forecasting model.
Head: Energy & Bulk Commodities
Vinesh holds a BCom (Honours) in Economics from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, specialising in applied microeconomics and financial markets.
At Afriforesight, his research is primarily on the energy sector, where he collates and analyzes data on energy usage, policies and standards at various points throughout the supply chain. This includes in-depth study on the supply and demand dynamics of the markets for coal, oil, natural gas, uranium and renewables. Vinesh also focuses on the analysis of bulk commodities as well as the global transport and shipping markets.
Business Development Executive
Sebastian holds Bcom and Bcom Honours Economics degrees from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal. He has several years experience in the import/export and wholesale trade, working primarily with the textiles and semi-durable goods sectors, where he's had the opportunity to travel extensively overseas. Since then, he has joined Afriforesight as a Strategy Economist, specializing in business model analysis and advising clients on economic and market developments.
Head: Metals Research & South African Economy
Eduan holds BCom (Law) and LLB degrees from the University of Stellenbosch, and a BCom Hons (Economics) from Unisa. His passion for Economics led him to join Afriforesight in 2014. Eduan leads the research on the international copper and aluminium markets as well as the analysis on the South African economy and domestic markets for labour, cement and timber. Eduan is also Afriforesight’s Research Manager.
Head: Battery Metals & Processing Chemicals
Pearson holds a BSc with Honours in Chemistry from the University of Witwatersrand. During his Honours year, he conducted two material science projects with potential application in hybrid cars.
At Afriforesight, he applies his in depth understanding of the chemistry behind mining processes and the industrial application of mined commodities to his research on fuel cells and green methods of producing hydrogen gas focusing on gasification of fossil fuels and biomass. Pearson also mentors our trainee chemical engineers & chemists.
Head: Precious Metals, Processing & Sustainability
Tapiwa has a BSc and MSc in Chemical Engineering, both from the University of Cape Town. Before joining Afriforesight as a commodity and materials researcher, she worked for the Centre for Minerals Research, focusing her research on optimising metal recovery in nickel processing and acid mine drainage mitigation. Tapiwa’s skills are directed at research on PGM markets and on chemicals used in mineral processing, manufacturing and industry. Tapiwa is also undertaking research towards a PhD on beneficiation opportunities and sustainability in the PGM industry.
Isabel de Wet
Isabel holds a Bachelor of Social Science in Social Anthropology from UCT. She has more than 15 years experience in exceeding client expectations working as a project manager for one for the top restaurant franchises in South Africa. At Afriforesight, Isabel is responsible for coordinating business operations, monitoring and motivating staff, and improving administration processes. Equipped with strong interpersonal skills and leadership abilities, she oversees all executive relationships as well as Afriforesight's research projects from ideation to execution.
Janelle holds a Bachelor of Science in Financial Management from De La Salle University in Manila, Philippines. Coming from a Chinese family, she has more than 10 years experience in various entrepreneurial ventures, which allows her to do general research on supply chain commodities. Janelle is also responsible for executive corporate affairs and manages the special mining and commodity research projects at Afriforesight.
Charles has recently completed his Masters degree in Economics at UCT, for which he presented a paper investigating the impact of asteroid mining on long-term platinum supply. In addition to serving as Afriforesight’s political economist, he has a special interest in the US political game. Charles also supports the team in delivering forecasts that are often ahead-of-market trends. His unique training as both a Chartered Accountant and an economist allows him to understand commodity industries through the analysis of company financial performance from a macro-economic context. He was the technical designer of the Mining Phakisa forecasting model.
Environmental & Commodities Economist
Joshua holds a BA in Politics & Economics and an MA in Political and International Studies from Rhodes University as well as a PGDip in Environmental Management from Stellenbosch University. His thesis was on integrating environmental sustainability at Rhodes University. At Afriforesight he is part of the research team with a special focus on commodities with a strong sustainability emphasis.
Technical Research Executive
Keenan holds a BSc degree in Geology and Botany with Honours in Botany from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. His Honours projects included research into Phytomining and Phytoremediation and their industrial applications. At Afriforesight he conducts research on global supply and demand for mined commodities, such as bauxite, and industrial costs, like forklifts.