How a scientist with a PhD in Human Genetics co-founded a tech platform for booking domestic services

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Aisha Pandor, CEO of SweepSouth, advises women never to undersell themselves. Image supplied by Irvine Partners
Aisha Pandor, CEO of SweepSouth, advises women never to undersell themselves. Image supplied by Irvine Partners
  • Aisha Pandor is a former scientist with a PhD in Human Genetics and previously worked as a management consultant for Accenture South Africa. 
  • Back in 2014, she co-founded SweepSouth, an on-demand home services company.
  • The company has expanded into Kenya and is poised to launch in Nigeria.

Meet Aisha Pandor, CEO of SweepSouth, one of SA's largest on-demand home services companies. The company has expanded into Kenya and are poised to launch in Nigeria.

Aisha co-founded the company, and it soon became Africa's first online end-to-end platform for booking, managing and paying for home services. This propelled Aisha to being among few black female tech startup CEOs both in South Africa and internationally.

The company is also the first South African startup to be accepted into the prestigious 500 Startups accelerator based in Silicon Valley in San Francisco.  

READ MORE | How an astrophysicist who's worked for NASA is using tech to create custom-made shelves in SA

Aisha didn't start her career in domestic services. She is a former scientist who completed her PhD in Human Genetics at the University of Cape Town.

While writing her PhD thesis on gene therapy for hereditary blindness, she also completed an Associate in Management course at the University's Graduate Business School.

Following her studies, she went on to work as a management consultant at Accenture South Africa. 

READ MORE | Meet the Mdantsane woman who went from shutting down her first company to owning 2 petrol stations

After two years as a consultant, she co-founded SweepSouth, a tech platform for booking domestic services that connect unemployed and underemployed home services workers with homeowners who need their services.

This was in June 2014, and currently, the company operates in six South African cities and Kenya, hoping to enter the Nigerian market soon. 

"Don't undersell yourself, let your results speak for themselves, and when it comes to confidence, fake it till you make it - you will."
Aisha Pandor

Below Aisha has encouragement for aspiring women in business: 

How did you become a leading player in your sector? 

By focusing on hard work, execution and results. Also, trying to be bold and confident in asking for what I want, building the world I'd like to see around me, and carrying out work based on a solid set of values. 

READ MORE | Ever wondered what it's like to work for TikTok? Actress Nolwazi Ngubeni gives us the inside scoop 

How can women in business help other women reach their full potential? 

Give women fair chances to succeed and recognise and call out sexist and biased behaviour. Also, call out and question the underrepresentation of women and be part of conversations to help address this. Being a mentor and advisor is essential, as is being a role model and hopefully an example of success for other women who are up and coming in their careers.

Tip to success 

Work hard, do work that you're passionate about, adds value and is aligned with your skills, view your work and career as a long-term game and act accordingly—partner with people who make you up your game.

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