Wendy Appelbaum

Millionaire On A Mission

Wendy Applebaum3

Heiress to one of South Africa's biggest fortunes, Wendy Applebaum doesn't rest on her laurels. 

A woman of legendary entrepreneurial repute, Appplebaum doesn't feel offended by how frequently she's referred to as "fierce". She's irritated by the notion that businesswomen tend to be less confident or outspoken than men. "On the contrary, I find women much more forthcoming when it comes to telling it like it is." Not one to mince her words, she says this trait was honed in interactions with her father. "He wasn't particularly interested in anyone else's opinion. He used to bounce ideas off us in order to get his own thoughts into a logical sequence."

A co-founder of exemplary women's investment group, Wiphold, Applebaum is also a keen investor in the education space.  She's also a director of the investment firm Sphere Holdings and remains involved with both the Gordon Institute of Business Science and and the Donald Gordon Medical Centre, on whose board she sits. She balances her time between business dealings, board meetings and travel. Besides her wine estate, she's intrinsically involved in the South African chapter of the IWF and swears by the global body's impeccable networking benefits.


1990 – She co-founded Wiphold, a company that helps women in townships and rural areas to gain basic financial and business skills. 

2006 – She received entrepreneur recognition from Leading Women Entrepreneurs of the world, an organisation that promotes female entrepreneurial excellence. 

2011 – The Wendy Applebaum Institute of Women’s Health was established. The institute aims to help women receive appropriate healthcare.

2012 – She was named one of Forbes magazine's 10 female millionaires to watch in Africa.

2015 – Her wine estate, DeMorgenzon, received an international award as one of the best wine producers in the world.

You can't learn to be an entrepreneur; either you've got it or you haven't.

Wendy Applebaum