Chief Executive Officer
Co-founder
Gary Kaplan Gary Kaplan is one of the founders of the Touchsides group in 2013 and, in his capacity as CEO, is also responsible for the local and international management and growth of Touchsides. As one of the founders in 2001 of Blue Label Investments (Pty) Ltd, (now JSE-listed Blue Label Telecoms Ltd), Gary was Joint CEO until 2007 when he elected to create a niche and boutique Private Equity Group. Gary graduated with a Bachelor of Accountancy (University of the Witwatersrand) and is a registered Chartered Accountant.

Executive Director & Chief Strategist
Co-founder
Dr. David Fraser Dr. David Fraser is one of the founders of the Touchsides group and is responsible for its technological innovation and strategic direction and positioning. Prior to this, David was the Group CTO of Blue Label Telecoms Ltd, where he drove group technology strategy and mergers and acquisition activity. David has also launched several successful start-ups and consultancies in 15 countries, working with partners based in the US and Europe. David holds the following degrees and professional memberships: BSc Eng, MSc Eng, PhD

Chief Operating Officer Bryan Orsmond Bryan Orsmond joined Touchsides in 2013 and is responsible for operations. Bryan also assists with new business development and client management. Prior to this, Bryan was CTO and then MD of Blue Label One, the mobile subsidiary of Blue Label Telecoms Ltd. Bryan initially worked in the field of digital signal processing with Altech Defence Systems, where he was instrumental in the design and development of sonar systems. In 1996 Bryan launched Outbound Systems, which focused on the fields of business engineering and systems development. Bryan has a BSc Eng and MSc Eng degree (University of Natal).

Accountant Clare Anthony “Excellence is not a skill, it is an attitude” Clare Anthony joined Touchsides SA in October 2016. Clare completed her B (Com) Accounting degree at the University of Johannesburg. She also completed her SAICA articles at BDO South Africa Incorporated. Clare’s previous experience in the finance world include that of the financial services industry and mining industry.

Hardware Expert Timothy Oellermann Tim Oellermann joined Touchsides in 2014 as hardware expert. Before joining Touchsides, Tim worked for Cerulent as CTO, where he was responsible for technical development of prepaid TV and NFC systems. Prior to that, Tim was a senior engineer a Skye Advanced Technologies, where his focus was on digital systems and wireless engineering. Tim has vast experience in end-to-end creation of both digital and analogue electronic hardware, as well as firmware and real-time operating systems. Tim has a BSc Eng (University of Natal) and has conducted post-graduate research in digital communications.

Software Architect Dirk Veldhuis “With Touchsides unique multi-tenanted products, we develop and invent unique solutions which are both challenging and personally fulfilling.” Responsibilities extend from developing the high level architecture of our solutions to implementing low level components.

Head of Technology Jarrod Hermer Jarrod Hermer joined Touchsides in 2015 to assist in defining and building the products as the Product Manager. Before joining Touchsides Jarrod was a Technical Evangelist at Microsoft and one of the cofounders of Mybeat. Jarrod has a BSc in Electrical Engineering (University of the Witwatersrand).

Operations Manager Dipak Daya “It's great to be part of the TS company as the leadership has the DNA of intellects that are smart having innovative technologies and clever integration systems to get to client's need in the digital techno world.” Currently with Touchsides Group since 2015: Dipak is responsible for Operations Marketing within Touchsides Group, and responsible for new business developments and client management across emerging markets both locally and internationally. Dipak has launched the TouchRetail™ solutions successfully in India with multinational companies.
Prior to this Dipak was with The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC) over 15 years working across Central and East Africa (10 countries) in various roles as Media Manager – Brand Manager and the last role as Operations Marketing Manager. His key responsibilities are over 3 areas which is to drive Volume, Profit & and Excellence. Dipak has Marketing qualifications.

Software Engineer in Testing Ntsakisi Julia Mabasa “I chose to join Touchsides because it meets everything I am looking for in a job. Touchsides allowed me an opportunity to be creative and work in a team. I am impressed with their services, and I'm proud and passionate to be part of this growing business.” Ntsakisi joined Touchsides in 2016 as a Software Engineer in Testing. Prior to joining Touchsides, Ntsakisi worked for Puleng Technologies, a User and Data Management Practice that assists IT and Business with building an efficient, collaborative Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) program. Ntsakisi was previously employed by K2 Workflow and Mimecast as an IT Graduate/Intern. She has a National Diploma in Information Technology (University of Johannesburg) and is certified in Microsoft, Testing and K2 Blackpearl and Smartforms.

Software Engineer Henry Steere “I like working at Touchsides because we have an excellent and committed team and we are bringing innovative technology and data driven insights to the FMCG sector.” Henry has an MSc in Mathematics from the University of the Witwatersrand and has worked as a software developer and data analyst using C#, Java, C++, Javascript, R and Python. He is always looking to improve himself and learn about trends in technology and to that end he has obtained two MIT CEUs for Big Data and Cyber Security. In addition he has completed over 30 online courses on platforms such as Coursera and Edx. In his spare time he enjoys reading Karl Popper and is a fan of Peter Norvig.

Data Insights Engineer Jan van Niekerk “Touchsides provides the retail industry with a technologically advanced solution which enables Brands to gain unrivalled insights into various aspects which affects their distribution channel, market share, sales and marketing initiatives to name but a few. We enable these brands by providing them real-time insights into various touch-points across all of their initiatives, providing them with the required data-driven actionable insights to drive informed decision making. We believe in working with our clients to help them grow and better understand the aspects which affect their Brand.” Jan is a passionate Data Scientist who loves creating data-driven actionable insights. He is a dedicated and enthusiastic academic/developer/analyst/entrepreneur who continually strives to be and do the best. Jan brings a diverse skill set with him, having founded a couple of companies, developed solutions across various platforms, consulted across various industries and having a keen curiosity about all things data-related.

Jan joined Touchsides in 2016 as a data, analytics and insights specialist. Prior to joining the team, Jan worked as a senior/lead analyst at Aqua Online (WPP Group), one of the biggest digital marketing companies in the world. Jan has also founded a couple of start-ups which operate in the digital realm, providing its customers with real-time analytics and insights pertaining to their brands. Jan has an extensive technical background in Computer Science & Informatics, having completed his undergraduate, Honours and Master's degree in Computer Sciences at the University of Johannesburg. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D in Computer Science, focussing on the areas of Multi Agent Systems, Cognition, Ambient Intelligence, Self-awareness and Computational Biology.

Software Engineer Rory Austin “I love working at Touchsides because of the people, the startup company excitement and challenges as well as the massive potential we have to change retail. I love the freedom to research and use new technologies.” Rory joined Touchsides in 2016 as a software engineer. With vast experience in web development he is primarily responsible for our internal web based application software, back-end APIs and customer facing websites. Before joining Touchsides Rory was a lead consultant for FIS, servicing major banks and asset managers. Rory holds a BSc IT from the University of Cape Town.

Project Manager Karen Henn “Touchsides is at the cutting-edge of retail solutions – using the latest technology to bridge the gap between retailer and consumer. It is an enormous privilege to be part of such an innovative and exciting endeavour.” Karen Henn joined Touchsides in September 2016 as a Project Manager. She is primarily responsible for ensuring that all endeavours are well planned, managed and controlled to meet the agreed objectives, deadlines, and budgets. Karen also assists with marketing and promotions and has had 23 years experience in marketing, advertising, client services and project management within the retail space. She has a BA (Hons) degree, Video Technology Diploma, Project Management Diploma and is a qualified Six Sigma Greenbelt practitioner.

Android Engineer Marcel Manjoo Marcel Manjoo joined Touchsides towards the end of 2016 as a Software Engineer focusing on the Android platform. Prior to joining Touchsides, Marcel specialised in developing mobile applications for large corporates and developed his passion for everything related to Android. He's completed, amongst others, the following Android related Coursera courses: Programming Mobile Applications, Cloud Services and Mobile Services for Android Handheld Systems, the Pattern-Oriented Software Architectures course and the Udacity Android Developer Nanodegree.

Operations Support Leon Harmse “After all it takes as much skill to win a customer as it does to keep them and with a team like Touchsides we are bound to keep them” Leon Harmse joined the Touchsides team towards the end of 2016. He has an interest in dealing with retail store owners and gaining a deeper insight into market related queries and trends. He efficiently deals with the team out in the field managing and helping with customer related issues as well as technical issues. Prior to working at Touchsides Leon gained experience by helping launch some software from Microsoft and holds a B.Ed. Qualification from the University of Johannesburg.

Software Engineer Daniel Levin “I joined Touchsides because I am excited about leveraging technology to create new opportunities in the consumer goods industry. Enormous business value can be derived from using data in this space, and I wanted to be a part of that.” Daniel holds a degree in mathematics from the University of the Witwatersrand. He’s a self-taught software engineer who has contributed to a number of open source projects. His interest is to advance the use of data science and machine learning in industries previously underserved by these technologies.

Operations Manager Daniel Jassinowsky Daniel joined the Touchside's team early in 2017, to assist with operations. Before joining Touchsides, Daniel has been involved in many successful businesses, including a financing company, property company as well as multiple mobile applications, and is an active board member at each. Daniel also previously worked as a commodity trader & financial manager at Abeddac Trading. Daniel has a Bcom Finace / Marketing from the University of New South Whales and graduated Summa Cum Laude from his honours in investment management at the University of Johannesburg.

Data Engineer Lawrence Joffe Lawrence has over 10 years experience in building technology startups from scratch. Industries include insurance, fleet management, FMCG workforce monitoring, education and Fintech. He has passion for leveraging the latest technologies to accelerate commercial opportunities, with a focus in the overlap of software engineering and data science.

Lawrence Joffe joined Touchsides in 2017 as a data engineer. Prior to joining, Lawrence had been working with Barclays Rise and Techstars, as well as mentoring an MIT course big data and social analytics. Lawrence has a MSc in Electrical Engineering (University of the Witwatersrand).


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