Our team

Our team ensures that Innovus functions efficiently, and assists inventors and investors with all queries and processes related to our services.

Anita Nel

Anita Nel

CEO of Innovus and Senior Director: Innovation and Business Development at SU

One of Anita’s first positions was at Thawte, a successful South African IT company which was sold to VeriSign in 2000. Upon leaving Thawte, Anita was one of the founder members of HBD Venture Capital where she worked as Investment Manager. At HBD Anita gained valuable experience in investing in technology start-ups and serving on the boards of these companies post investment. With vast experience in human resources, marketing, negotiations, strategy and general management, Anita is well equipped to understand entrepreneurship and the many challenges facing start-up companies. She holds a BSc (Physics) degree and MSc (Psychology) degree, as well as an HED.


Laurie Barwell

Project manager

Having joined Innovus in July 2014 as a part-time contractor, Laurie is involved in introducing the world to the innovative SharkSafe Barrier technology which aims to protect both sharks and humans. He is also assisting with the development and implementation of the Vulamanz point of use water filtration system in the rural areas of the Limpopo Province.

Holder of an MSc (engineering), Laurie is a coastal environment engineer who has 28 years’ experience as coastal engineer and contract research manager at the CSIR. He has a passion for team work and the practical realisation of innovative scientific and engineering ideas that make a difference. He enjoys travelling and tries to spend as much of his free time as possible with his partner, Freda, visiting interesting places in SA and other countries.

Charlotte Mashaba

Technology Transfer Officer

Charlotte Mashaba is a molecular biologist by training and joined Innovus in 2015 as a Technology Transfer Officer. She plays an active role in the identification, protection and commercialisation of the university’s intellectual proprety (IP).

Following her time as a researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) Charlotte became a Commercialization Practitioner within the Innovation Skills Development at the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA). In this role, her development entailed intergrating science and business skills for the purpose of commercializing technology researched and developed from both the public and private sectors. She had the privilege of being exposed to three University Technology Transfer Offices over a three year period and she also received invaluable experience in IP evaluation, assessing commercial potential technologies and structuring potential investments from institutitons such as the Industrial Develepment Cooporration (IDC) and Edge Growth.

Charlotte is high-spirited, reads a lot and also enjoys outdoor activies, more specifically hiking.

William Cloete

Technology Transfer Officer

William joined Innovus as a translational postdoctoral fellow in January 2015, working on projects related to inherently antimicrobial materials for coating and filtration applications. His research career as postgraduate student as well as a former research chemist at Kansai-Plascon has been of a highly collaborative nature integrating engineering, life sciences and polymer chemistry principles to solve complex problems. He currently manages a large IP portfolio related to these fields. When he is not out looking for business opportunities, you can find him at a lab bench somewhere on campus working alongside postgraduates.


Nolene Signh

Technology Transfer Officer

Nolene joined the Innovus team in September 2016 as a Technology Transfer Officer. Hailing from Durban, Nolene completed her MTech at Durban University of Technology and spent the next 12 years in the plant genetics industry, starting up and commercialising laboratories. She loves a good book, romantic comedies and spending time with her family.


Gert le Roux

Gert holds an MPhil (Livestock Industry Management: Aquaculture) degree from Stellenbosch University and has 19 years’ experience in the aquaculture industry. He has been the Programme Coordinator for the DST Aquaculture Programme since 2007 and is responsible for the feasibility assessment, design, planning, implementation, coordination, financial management, community liaison and business development of five Department of Science and Technology funded aquaculture projects, encompassing both abalone and marine finfish. Gert also provides consultancy services to a wide range of companies in the South African fishing and aquaculture sectors and is a director of Diamond Coast Abalone (Pty) Ltd.

He is impervious to bad weather and will eat anything.


Philip Marais

Business Developer

An accredited Mentors and Business Coaches International Facilitator, Philip has a unique technical and business background. He started his career in the software development industry and subsequently became one of the founding members of HBD Venture Capital. While at HBD, Philip also started and managed Upstarts Business Incubator and was responsible for mentoring and coaching incubator tenants. His passion for mentoring and coaching led him to start his own consulting company where he continues to assist small businesses in pursuing long-term sustainable success.

Philip holds an MSc (Engineering) degree from UCT.

He enjoys spending time with his wife, Nikki, and children Joshua, Jemma and Noah. He also enjoys outdoor activities, especially mountain biking.

Brandon Paschal

Operations Manager / Business Developer

Brandon joined the LaunchLab in April 2015, after having worked for nearly three years as a Business Analyst and Project Manager at a digital agency. He facilitated strategy workshops with the Applogix founders, established the Project Management function, and contributed to Applogix being acquired by WPP in late 2014. Previously, he was part of the team that started Campus Outreach in Gauteng, an NGO that develops leaders at universities around the world.

Brandon holds a BSBA from UNC-Charlotte and an MBA from East Caroline, both in the United States.

Brandon is an avid runner and the resident coffee snob.

Gizelle Meyer

Marketing Manager

Gizelle joined the Nedbank Stellenbosch University LaunchLab team in June 2016. She is responsible for the marketing strategy at the LaunchLab, including managing various social media platforms, PR and the LaunchLab blog. She is also tasked with building relationships with LaunchLab sponsors, partners, potential resident companies and guest speakers, as well as project managing LaunchLab events. Gizelle previously worked as an Account Executive for Hatch Communication, a PR and social media agency in Stellenbosch, where she managed various wine-industry related accounts.

In her spare time, Gizelle enjoys outdoor activities and indulging in retail therapy.


Carol Kat

Head: Copyright & Short Courses

Previously the copyright officer for a publisher and supplier of course material in the Naspers Group, Carol has worked at Stellenbosch University since March 2003. She started as the Copyright Officer for the University’s publishing initiative and was transferred to Innovus in 2004.

Carol holds a B Rad Degree from Free State University and is currently completing a WIPO-UNISA Specialisation Programme in Intellectual Property. She is married and the mother of two daughters.


Doris Peters

Senior Admin & Financial (IP) Officer

Doris was responsible for setting up business procedures and processes for the office and has been instrumental in the development and testing of the RIMS/InfoEd Tech Transfer Module for South Africa.

She is responsible for the administration of the University’s trademark and intellectual property portfolio. She is also responsible for providing financial support to Innovus.

Doris has completed the WIPO-UNISA Specialisation Programme in Intellectual Property and the AUTM TOOLS course in the USA. She is currently completing her certificate in Entrepreneurial Business Management at Stellenbosch University Business School. Doris is probably one of the most experienced technology transfer individuals on the African continent.

Daniell Jacobs

Admin (IP) Officer

Daniell started at Innovus in October 2012 as acting personal assistant for the CEO. In April 2014 she was appointed the permanent position of administrative officer, responsible for the upload and maintenance of the electronic filing system (RIMS Technology Transfer Module).

Daniell studied BA Sport Science at Stellenbosch University and although working at Innovus is far removed from her field of study, she enjoys working with the University’s inventors and researchers.

She enjoys reading and loves watching rugby on weekends. She is also an entrepreneur – she teaches swimming lessons in her spare time and specialises in holistic massage.

Colette Noble

Office Liaison

Colette joined Innovus in May 2015 as our Office Liaison. Her responsibilities include reception duties and a supporting administrative role within the office. Colette previously worked for Commercial Services at Stellenbosch University and managed three Copying Service Divisions within the Neelsie Student Centre. In her spare time, Colette enjoys spending time with her children and also loves reading and singing. She also enjoys walking and has completed the Totalsports Ladies and Pink Drive races.