Fabio Longano

25th June 2021 By: Martin Zhuwakinyu - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

Fabio Longano

Full Name: Fabio Longano

Position: MD of TouchFoundry

Main Activity of the Company: Digital innovation – through custom software development and user-experience design

Date and Place of Birth: March 27, 1986 Cape Town

Education: BA (Media Production), University of Cape Town

First Job: Flash Actionscript designer and developer

Career History Prior to Current Position: Among other things, I have designed and developed various interactive tools, media and assets, developed an asset-rich touchscreen experience that was deployed to over 170 Toys R Us stores in the US for Xbox (nightly asset sync and real-time media management), developed Old Mutual’s internal information technology messaging platform, developed a series of interactive tools for major car brands, developed both firmware and software for a loyalty kiosk/touchscreen startup, and developed South Africa’s first motion-driven (using MS Kinect) holographic interactive displays – the concept of which was sold to Smirnoff and later to car brands. I have also developed various mobile applications for car loyalty platforms, and have also worked for Old Mutual as change agent and front-end development consultant

Size of First Pay Packet: R11 000 a month

First Job with Present Group: Cars.co.za mobile app

Value of Assets under Your Control: Not stated

Number of People under Your Leadership: 26

Management Style: Mixture of participative, collaborative and transformational

Personal Best Achievement: Selling an early-stage startup and diversifying a personal portfolio across various sectors – from foreign investments, stocks, property and company shares

Professional Best Achievement: Organically scaling a company of two to a company of 23 over five years, based purely on good work and word-of-mouth references

Person Who Has Had the Biggest Influence on Your Life: Steve Jobs

Person Who Has Had the Biggest Influence on Your Career: Werner Janse Van Rensberg, owner of Isoflow – he is a colleague, friend and counsellor who has helped and guided me through various pitfalls and junction points in my career at TouchFoundry

Person You Would Most Like to Meet: Rob Stokes – he has undertaken the single biggest acquisition of an agency on the South African landscape

Businessperson Who Has Impressed You Most: Peter Jones – his ability to dissect a business instantaneously on the back of a napkin, assessing critical pitfalls and opportunities, is truly inspiring

Philosophy of Life: Consistency is key; value the long game over one-hit wonders; strive to achieve an infinitely maintainable pace

Biggest Ever Opportunity: Developing a touch-screen system for Xbox USA

Biggest Ever Disappointment: I have had quite a few – in the startup world, not everything always goes to plan. For example, a space-sharing platform we were gearing up to take to market, hourspace.co, was crushed by Covid-19

Hope for the Future: To sustainably scale TouchFoundry to sale, while maintaining vision, focus and culture

Favourite Reading: I am currently reading Sweat, Scale, Sell, by Pavlo Phitidis, CEO of Aurik Business Accelerator

Favourite TV Programme: I do not have time for TV, but I enjoy occasional reruns of Dragon’s Den and Shark Tank – viewing the innovative ideas presented, and the way of presenting them

Favourite Food/Drink: A good rack of ribs and some red wine

Favourite Music: Anything that gets me zoned out (or in) for work – chillstep, synth wave, et cetera

Favourite Sport: Ultimate Frisbee

Favourite Website: Ours, of course – #biasedParent

Hobbies: Travelling. Having made my way across most of the major verticals in the globe to date, the Far East is next on my bucket list

Car: A Scirocco 2.0 and a Vespa GTS

Pets: One kitty called Chicken

Miscellaneous Dislikes: Apathy, egos, arrogance and ignorance – in that order

Favourite Other South African Company: Isoflow

Favourite Foreign Company: Ueno, a 50-something creative digital agency that is absolutely killing it

Married: To Kristina Oliinyk, since February 12, 2021

Children: None

Clubs: EO Cape Town