The Team

Our team is as diverse as the brands we represent, with each team member contributing unique and invaluable qualities and skills to our overall offering. The team of 17, consisting of a group of strategists, PR, communication and social media specialists, possess a wealth of big brand experience. Here’s your opportunity to get to know us a bit better…

Diani Smit - CEO

Diani has more than 18 years experience in client and customer service. With an Honours Degree in Communication Science, she specialises in strategy, online communication and digital marketing, applying a “Don’t tell me show me” attitude to her work. Organised and task-oriented, she believes in dealing with things in a consistently logical and rational manner. It is important to Diani that her clients are kept abreast of developments relating both to their communications and to the insights and opportunities presented by the field at large.

Connect: LinkedIn and Twitter 

Heike Kannemeyer - Co-founder / PR & Communication Director

With a passion for PR and digital communication, Heike heads up the day-to-day running at the agency. She is a strategic thinker, an effective implementer, and an astute analyser. From conception to retrospective evaluation, client projects benefit from Heike’s strong organisational skills and eye for detail. Extremely driven and career- and client-focused, Heike constantly challenges the team to effectively captures the media’s attention, always over-delivering on client brief.

Connect: LinkedIn and Twitter

Hestelle Pretorius - Account Director

Conceptualisation, creation, strategising, mentoring – these are all the ways through which Hestelle breathes life into her brands and her team. With her can-do attitude, she is constantly researching new ways to build and maintain brand identity and following. Always at the forefront of brand insights and digital developments, allows for continual innovation and improvement and meticulous objective analysis when reporting back to client. From communication strategising to event co-ordination, Hestelle can be found engaged in any means of client service at any given time. Her background in Psychology helps her to understand the way customers relate to brands and ideas, and how best to communicate her clients’ values and objectives to them.

Jonathan Bishop - Account Director

Jonathan brings a wealth of public relations, customer liaison and marketing experience to the role. No stranger to creative campaign development and implementation, he offers expert involvement that spans across all aspects of brand identity and awareness management. Motivated by innovative new ways of expressing client messages, Jonathan draws on his experience working across social, print and online platforms to craft flexible yet identifiable voices for his brands. His ability to work well with individuals and groups across a broad spectrum of industries and inclinations makes him a highly valued collaborator on any project.

Mariette Michaels - Office Administrator

With solid experience in customer service, retail and sales,  Mariette will bid you the warmest welcome when you visit the Hatch Office. She loves a challenge and no project is ever too big or too small for her to follow through with care. Her love for PR and client service adds to her unique skill set.

Susan Botha - Account Director

With eleven years of Advertising and Marketing experience, Susan has a great ability to understand her clients needs. She succesfully deals with Blue Chip clients at a senior level and  delivers outstanding projects and campaigns that “hit the spot”.  She is strongly visually oriented with great technological aptitude and boasts with  a Professional Diploma in Visual Communication and a IMM Marketing degree.

Kobus Smit - Account Director

This “Silver Fox” is a seasoned campaigner in the diverse yet integrated disciplines of corporate communications, PR, marketing and the positioning and repositioning of brands. His vast experience includes serving as a diplomat in Europe, Group PR for one of SA’s biggest mining houses, Manager: Corporate Affairs of KWV and brand consultancy for renowned national and international brands. His life-long passion for brands extends to community causes such as CANSA and the Gideons. “Building brands in the current digital landscape necessitate complex yet simplistic approaches and innovative thinking, obviously understanding and optimising the unlimited potential of social media in conjunction with traditional PR practices”.

Alida Reynolds - Financial Manager

Alida is our fabulous finance fundi. She has been in the industry since 1990, working for companies like Young & Rubicam and Bates 141 as Financial Manager.

She understands client needs and how large companies operate, and adds this valuable business experience to the Hatch team by streamlining financial structures and processes that serve our clients and our creative culture.

She grew up in a house that celebrated the performing arts. Her passion for music and theatre was nurtured in a home with a father who was an opera singer.

Alida has four children and lives with her family on a farm near Klapmuts. They have a flourishing parrot breeding program, a hobby that she grew into a business.

Danné Maree - Account Manager

With a passion for marketing, communication and working with people, Danné is ready to grow her career by gaining as much experience as possible within the communication industry. With her recent completion in BBA in Marketing Management at IMM, as well as her background knowledge of photography, she is able to respond and adapt creatively in any situation. She is hardworking and friendly, and always up for new challenges.

Peter Pentz - Account Assistant

Peter is a young energetic individual who has a passion for communication and the media world. He brings experience in both media and corporate communication to the team, after completing his degree in BA Communication at Northwest University Potchefstroom. Peter is an avid blogger, public speaker, wine enthusiast and social media user. He is always up for a challenge and eager to learn.

Bianca Lissoni - Account Assistant

Bianca is a driven go-getter with a creative flair. She has a passion for cooking, tech trends, fashion and creative content. With a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing from the University of Stellenbosch, she brings experience in digital marketing and social media management to the team. Always ready to dive into any challenge we send her way, Bianca just gets things done!

Sunet Schoonees - Account Director

Image telling stories based out of cities such as Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Boston, Auckland and Virgin Gorda over the last two decades. Sunet’s rich and diverse professional career across continents (and even on a Caribbean island) spans valued work and life experiences within most industry sectors that the art of communication between the brand and its audience touches. She is comfortable in technology, finance, investor relations and construction right through to automotive, lifestyle consumer, travel and tourism. She believes in listening more than talking, a vital skill learnt, and one which lets you craft interesting stories essential for brands to stand out head above water in today’s noise. Being the mommy of a happy and bright golden-haired son is her life’s biggest achievement.

Dohan Nel - Account Executive

With a good mix of logical thinking and creativity, Dohan approaches his projects head-on and with a constant yearning to learn. He enjoys problem-solving and collaborative thinking, not scared to roll up his sleeves and get his hands dirty. He is not only an avid sports fan and gin lover, but has a passion for sustainability and green living. Dohan is currently studying at Vega School of Brand Leadership, although he might come across as quite serious, he always has a joke ready!

Marita van der Merwe - Account Assistant
Marita is a recent languages graduate from the University of Cape Town. She has a passion for writing, communication and creative problem solving. She continues to express her creative side by singing, analyzing the latest trends and baking. This passionate young PR professional is ready to make her mark in the industry.