BAT Southern Africa appoints Candice Watson as HR director


Candice was the first member of the CHRO SA community. 

British American Tobacco Southern Africa has appointed Candice Watson, who was the first member of the CHRO SA community, as HR Director. Candice succeeds Leslie Rance, who recently left BAT after 15 years with the organisation. Prior to her appointment, she was the area head for talent and organisational effectiveness, leading the Southern Africa area execution of talent strategy and organisational effectiveness initiatives to enhance the business performance and leadership succession pipeline. She also co-ordinated the learning and development, and diversity initiatives for the region.

In her two years with the company, Candice has successfully had it certified as a top employer in South Africa and on the continent. She has garnered a lot of experience as an executive-level HR professional and has been exposed to many industries including financial, industrial, information technology and fast moving consumer goods. Having started her HR career in the graduate development programme at the South African Breweries Soft Drinks Division, she moved onto Standard Bank South Africa as an HR generalist before making rapid progress in senior executive roles. She has been the HR partner at Lenovo, the HR director for Sub-Saharan Africa at Pernod Ricard and has also worked as an HR executive for Barloworld Automotive and logistics.

Candice holds a Bachelor & Honours in Psychology from the University of Johannesburg; a Post Graduate Diploma and Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the Gordon Institute of Business Science. She is currently enrolled for her doctorate in Business Administration through the University of Cape Town pursuing her research interests in Women in Management.

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