Final eight #TIA 2019 apprentices revealed

17 October 2018 Myra Knoesen

It began with 159 applications, 59 went through to the elimination rounds allowing the panel to identify the top 20 and now, the final eight for The Insurance Apprentice 2019 have been chosen.

Power in numbers

The top 20 candidates uploaded one-minute videos in which they shared their message to the industry and to people outside the industry about why they would be suitable ambassadors for/and within the insurance industry. Voting started, and it was incredible to see how they promoted #TIA2019 on social media… a total of 131 355 votes were received. The votes did not determine who the top eight would be but definitely contributed in making the final decision.

After considering all the elements, the panellists have chosen the final eight applicants who will grace the industry with their presence early next year, on series five of The Insurance Apprentice. They are:

  1. Colin Lunsky - HTI Insurance Brokers
  2. Ditebogo Mokgalabone - Chubb Insurance
  3. Gillian Riley - Santam
  4. Jake Pennacchini - MUA Insurance Acceptances
  5. Kishan Vanmali - Marsh
  6. Mitesh Lakha - Discovery Insure
  7. Palesa Mochane - Hollard
  8. Reese Aron - Marsh

It should be noted that these candidates were highly regarded by the judges during the elimination round and as emphasised previously, the one-minute video exercise served to assist, and not determine, the judge’s final outcome in choosing between those candidates that were neck and neck after the elimination day round. 

Exciting elements for series five

"Having chosen the final eight, we are confident in our decision and we look forward to filming the fifth series of The Insurance Apprentice early next year. We have added new elements to the show which makes it that much more exciting, " said Rianet Whitehead, Editor of FAnews and Organiser of The Insurance Apprentice.

“Old Mutual Insure will be hosting The Insurance Apprentice so look out for the new look and feel to boardroom sessions, work areas and backgrounds. We will have a #superfan competition in which viewers answer a specific question after each episode. After episode seven all the correct answers will go into a lucky draw and three people will be chosen to attend the announcement of the winner function. On the evening we will have a lucky draw between the three people and one person will win R20 000 cash, sponsored by Constantia Insurance,” continued Whitehead.

“Another exciting development for our viewers is that Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours will be attached to episodes going forward. Focused on each task at the end of every episode, there will be questions asked with a CPD concept for readers/viewers,” said Whitehead.

Filming will take place from 20 to 25 January 2019. The series will be aired early 2019 via the FAnews and The Insurance Apprentice websites, YouTube and Facebook. In preparation for filming week, the eight apprentices will attend a mentor training day (to help the apprentices assess and use their own dynamics and brand during the competition) and a camera training day (on the rules of tv etiquette, wardrobe and body language).

Winner and runner up prizes

The winner of The Insurance Apprentice wins a trip to Lloyds of London, a R75 000 bursary from Inseta, a cash prize of R20 000 from Masifunde Training Centre, and also R15 000 from Hollard. 

The Runner Up wins R15 000, sponsored by Tracker and a bursary from Masifunde Training Centre worth R27 500. Third place will receive a bursary from Masifunde Training Centre worth R27 500.

Each of the eight apprentices will receive a Samsung tablet with a wireless keyboard (sponsored by Masifunde Training Centre) and a R1 000 Uber voucher (sponsored by Discovery Insure), a book ‘Everything you need to know about non-life insurance in South Africa’, written and sponsored by Gareth Stokes and Liz Still, and a cool gift from King Price. 

Proud sponsors of #TIA2019

In showing support here are our #TIA2019 sponsors - thank you for your support and sponsorship: 


  • Inseta
  • Masifunde Training Centre


  • Aon South Africa
  • Emerald Risk Transfer
  • Hollard
  • Innovation Group
  • Insure Group Managers
  • Lloyds of London
  • Marsh Africa
  • Old Mutual Insure
  • Sasria Soc Ltd
  • SHA Specialist Underwriters 


  • Bryte Insurance
  • Constantia Insurance
  • FNB Insurance Brokers
  • Innosys
  • Price Forbes
  • Santam 


  • AIG
  • Auto & General
  • Chubb
  • Discovery Insure
  • HIC Underwriting Managers
  • Hogan Lovells
  • Oakhurst Insurance
  • King Price
  • Tracker

Editor’s thoughts:
The competition for series five is strong, but only time will tell who will be crowned the 2019 Insurance Apprentice. Please comment below, interact with us on Twitter at @fanews_online or email me your thoughts at


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