“It’s not a faith in technology. It’s faith in people.” — Steve Jobs

Jacques Jordaan



Organisation / Company



Jacques Jordaan, 27, is the co-founder and chief executive of Specno, a venture builder that helps start-ups and large enterprises with digital solutions. He is responsible for the overall management and decision-making. His primary role is to set the strategic direction and long-term goals of the company. He also assists in the development and implementation of business plans, budgets and policies. Jacques is the public face of the company and takes the lead in all negotiations. He says he’s most proud of two achievements: that the company has helped create many jobs and that the solutions they have built for clients have improved millions of lives. He gives the example of their work with Wardworx, a free task management app. Specno built the technology behind the app and now thousands of doctors can improve patient care in hospitals. But it was the pandemic that was the real game-changer. The company faced closure within six weeks and it was decided that all employees should be consulted. As a result the company kept its doors open. Jacques says he learnt it was invaluable to keep the team involved and to allow people to make decisions and implement their plans, as it breeds ownership in the company.


Honours in Information Systems Management, Stellenbosch University


I am particularly proud of the fact that we have helped create a significant amount of jobs since we started Specno. That being said, my key motivator is the fact that the solutions we’ve built for our clients have been used to improve the lives of millions of people.
In this way, Specno’s capacity to contribute to our business and entrepreneurial landscape has remained a key highlight for me. Our passion for the work we do increases daily, as we continue to pave a transformative pathway for South African entrepreneurs to integrate technology into the businesses they’ve built, towards improving their overall profitability and long-term success. 
I am particularly proud that we are able to use the latest technological advancements to build innovative and dynamic solutions for businesses looking to increase their profit margins in South Africa, especially when those companies were incubated to develop solutions to a number of societal challenges in our country, ultimately propelling economic growth and enriching lives in the long-term.


Satya Nadella has been a major influence for me as a young entrepreneur. When Satya took the reins as chief executive of Microsoft in 2014, he inherited a company that was struggling to adapt to the rapidly changing tech landscape. His leadership and vision not only revitalised Microsoft but also transformed it into a global leader in cloud computing and artificial intelligence. Satya’s ability to pivot the company towards innovative solutions while keeping to its core values shows a perfect blend of strategy and visionary leadership, qualities I strive to display in my own company.  Satya focused on a culture shift that prioritised learning, resilience, and collaboration, all areas which have since become major factors affecting the company’s continued success. This focus on personal and professional development inspires me to cultivate a similar environment within Specno and our team. By valuing empathy, continuous learning, and inclusivity, Satya shows that true leadership extends beyond business metrics, and includes the establishment of an inclusive and forward-thinking workplace. Last year, Specno won the prestigious International Modern Work Shaper Award, in recognition of the company’s commitment to embracing modern work initiatives as a fundamental aspect of its daily operations in South Africa. Currently, Specno offers flexible work hours and embraces hybrid working to empower its team to thrive in both office and remote settings. By fostering collaboration, flexibility, and work-life balance, the company aims to redefine productivity in a manner that unleashes the true potential of its employees, just as Satya Nadella has done.