Sitting at the family dinner table as a teenager, Jade Kirkel was bemused to hear her father announce that he intended to open a chain of beauty salons called Sorbet. Little did she know then that the idea would serve as her springboard into the stratosphere of South African business.
After graduating with her marketing degree, Jade joined the family setup in 2009. Sorbet had 10 stores in and around Johannesburg. In ten years, as the Group Marketing Manager, Jade helped grow the brand into a household name. By 2018, when the family sold the business, there were over 220 stores across the country.
With the lessons she had learned Jade was prompted to share her ideas with young marketers, inspiring entrepreneurs and big brands alike. She spent the next few months helping other businesses on their branding journey and spent some time on the speaking circuit.
Jade also helps run Signal, a group of 45+ South African entrepreneurs, business founders, and leaders. Signal is a hub of conversation, innovation, and collaboration with a deep desire to contribute towards a better South Africa.
Jade assists on projects with the Jewish Board and is also chair lady of the PTA for King David Sandton.
A chance meeting with a high school friend, Dani Silbermann in 2019 would be the start of her next venture: JoyJoy. JoyJoy is an interchangeable kids' sneaker brand, it is fun colorful, and joyful. JoyJoy was officially launched into the world in May 2022. The brand has quickly gained traction in the market and has grown online and into retail stores. In 2023 JoyJoy signed with Disney and has attracted many influencers across South Africa. Jade is currently pursuing a few global opportunities and international expansion.
As a mother of three girls, Jade also understands the critical work/family dynamic and believes that having both is achievable.
"It’s a privilege to be a King Davidian. King David is an institution. It has been the educational backbone for thousands of Jewish children and is home to a special community with deep-rooted togetherness. It has birthed change makers, intellects, sports stars, musicians, and critical thinkers. It has cultivated friendships, fostered businesses and in many ways, the people that have walked out of these doors have changed our country for the better. It has been the glue of our community.
I loved my years at King David. It strongly shaped who I am today. I came out with a sense of Jewishness, a readiness to tackle the ups and downs of the real world, and friends for life. I spent countless hours on the sports field, public speaking, and serving on outreach programs. History was my favorite subject at school and the best hour of my day.
I am so grateful that my girls have followed in my King David journey. There is nowhere else I would want them to be".