Remembering his previous visit, Simmons said he had the privilege of meeting former President Nelson Mandela and meeting stakeholders involved in diamond mining. On this, Simmons said he had been further educated on illegal diamonds and their impact on the economy.
In addition, Simmons explained that he had visited the African Leadership Academy and was instrumental in raising cash for the insititution through a benefit in China.
Those attending the Mazda DESTINY Forum can expect entrepreneur and hip-hop guru Russell Simmons to share his expertise on business, the state of music, spiritual and social affairs.
Clad in a white golf shirt, blue jeans and his signature NY baseball cap, Simmons addressed media at the Saxon Hotel in Johannesburg.
Hip-hop pioneer Russell Simmons will speak on entrepreneurship, success and self-mastery at the Mazda DESTINY Forum this Friday.
When asked what guidance he had given his family, Simmons said although he tried his best to give direction it was usually shrugged off. However, he had the following advice for upcoming businessmen: “Everything takes time. Keep re-addressing the market. For me it took four years before Argyle Culture took off. Even before Phat Farm there were no black designers in the market.”
Simmons said he was honoured to be invited to South Africa to speak on topics close to his heart. "Lots of social, spiritual and political matters affect our people. It's easier to do a lot more good when you are a celebrity," he said.
On how he had managed to attain success in his business dealings, Simmons said it was his work which made him happy and the financial results were a bonus. "Staying focused on your vision and surrounding yourself with talented and smart people ensures success. I was inspired by Quincy Jones and many others," said Simmons.
On what other advice he could offer aspiring entrepreneurs, Simmons said passion was key. "Passion is important, you can't learn about it from school. You need to create a career for yourself out of what you love. Look at the things around you that inspire you. Your gift is your own. The keys to success are resilience, faith and dedication."
In conclusion, Simmons explained that his past had led him to be the philanthropist, yogi, meditator and entrepreneur that he was today, adding that he hoped to create a legacy which would continue to inspire dialogue and change around the world.