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Meet the Judges of the 2023/24 AFI Fastrack Prize

AFI Insider

As Africa Fashion International (AFI) gears up to announce the winner of the prestigious AFI Fastrack Prize on June 21, 2024, the spotlight is not only on the talented young designers but also on the esteemed panel of judges who play a crucial role in this transformative journey.

The AFI Fastrack Prize is an incubator program run by Africa Fashion International, develops young fashion designers in the business of fashion. Since its inception in 2011, it has fostered talent, innovation, and sustainability, serving as a launchpad for emerging designers.

Introducing the AFI Fastrack Prize 2023/24 Judges

The panel of judges for the 2023/24 AFI Fastrack Prize embodies a diverse range of expertise and perspectives, ensuring a comprehensive evaluation of the finalists' work.

This year, the panel includes:

Kiba Bam, retail expert, will judge AFI Fastrack Prize 2023/24

Kiba Bam, a retail expert with extensive experience in the fashion industry. Bam's insight into market trends and retail dynamics provides invaluable guidance to emerging designers aiming to make their mark commercially.

Aspasia Karras, Publisher and Editor-At-Large at Sunday Times.

Aspasia Karras, magazine publisher and editor-at-large of Sunday Times Lifestyle. With her keen editorial eye and deep understanding of fashion journalism, Karras offers a perspective that bridges the gap between creative expression and media representation.

TsotetsiKL Designer, Khothatso Tsotetsi, AFI Fastrack Prize Judge

Khothatso Tsotetsi, a fashion designer (for TsotetsiKL) and lecturer at Tshwane University of Technology. Tsotetsi brings academic rigor and practical design experience to the panel, ensuring that the finalists' creations are both innovative and technically sound.

Shamyra Moodley, AFI Fastrack Prize Judge, LaaniRaani designer

Shamyra Moodley, the AFI Fastrack Prize 2021 winner and owner of the LaaniRaani brand. As an alumna who has successfully transitioned from the competition to global recognition, Moodley represents the potential and opportunities that the Fastrack Prize affords its winners.

Felipe Mazibuko

Felipe Mazibuko is a leading style architect and expert who has helped shape post-1994 South African tastes, identities and aesthetics. He has over three decades experience in the fashion industry. He has previously mentored the current AFI Fastrack Prize cohort during the incubation period. 

The AFI Fastrack Prize is more than just an award; it is a comprehensive programme designed to nurture young designers over a 12-month period.

This initiative has successfully mentored over 40 designers, many of whom have made significant marks in the global fashion scene.

Notable alumni include Shamyra Moodley of LaaniRaani (2021), who now stocks at the prestigious Galeries Lafayette in Paris, Thebe Magugu (2015), who recently opened his flagship store, Magugu House in Johannesburg, and Rich Mnisi (2014), a prominent figure in contemporary fashion, who boasts collaborations with adidas, H&M and Woolworths.  

Shaping the Future: Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe on the AFI Fastrack Prize Vision


Dr Precious Moloi-Motsepe with AFI Fastrack Prize Alumni

Dr Precious Moloi-Motsepe, Founder and Executive Chairperson of AFI, emphasises the long-term vision of the AFI Fastrack Prize.

"The vision for the AFI Fastrack Prize is to identify, mentor, and incubate a new generation of designers who will shape the fashion landscape globally. AFI works with designers to heighten their commitment to quality, excellence, and sustainability from an environmental, heritage, ethics, and financial perspective.”

The Finalists and Their Journey 


The finalists are Botshelo Molete, Kgotsofalo Given Monyamate, Loice Dube, the design duo Xolani Magadla and Mawande Mbawuli, Xhanti Xabiso Mpu, Thandazani Nofingxana, and Mimangaliso Ndiko

The finalists were carefully selected from 233 applicants and have gone through an intensive 12-month training program that includes mentoring, executive training and business management, networking, and market exposure.

They will showcase their final collections under the theme '30 Years of Fashion Freedom. 30 Years of Fashion Expression,' celebrating South Africa's democratic journey and its influence on fashion.

The judging process will test their business acumen, creativity, and alignment with AFI's values of quality, heritage, and sustainability. The grand prize winner will receive a package valued at R150,000, a significant boost to their budding career.

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