“Ngubani uMzekezeke? Who is Mzekezeke?” was probably the most popular question in the entertainment industry in the early 2000s. DJ Sbu is still believed to be the man hiding under kwaito legend Mzekezeke’s mask but he’s always dismissed the claims. What cannot be denied though is that his energy drink MoFaya has cemented him as the top hustler in Mzansi and he continues to push boundaries!
Who is DJ Sbu?
DJ Sbu was born Sbusiso Leope in 1979 in Tembisa, Gauteng. He is a famous DJ, a TV and radio host, best-selling author, a music producer, and an established entrepreneur. He had his entrepreneurial zest polished from a young age; in Tembisa he had a thriving spaza shop.
After high school, DJ Sbu went to further his studies at the Media University. Like the hustler he was, he started selling cellphones to cover his expenses. DJ Sbu had always enjoyed Mathematics, but as luck would have it, he ended up working as a broadcast presenter for a radio station. He spent one and a half years there as a volunteer producer and presenter. While doing so, he discovered his passion for both radio and television, and he has been committed to this job ever since. It was YFM that gave him his big break and made him the popular host he is known as today.
DJ Sbu Puts On Famous Musicians
DJ Sbu joined hands with TK Nciza to build an independent record label TS Records that would go on to produce popular names in the music fraternity. TS Records focused on unearthing talent in ekasi and discovered South Africa’s second highest selling female artist of all time, Zahara. DJ Sbu co-executive produced over 30 gold and platinum selling albums and has released seven successful house albums of his own! Talking about success, Mzekezeke was ‘their’ most prosperous artist realising top charting hits in the early 2000s.
Who is the Real Mzekezeke?
DJ Sbu always maintained that he was not the faceless entertainer Mzekezeke since early 2000s but the two continue to deny the claims, and insist that they are two different individuals. Their voices sounded the same and even their body structure was quite similar. At some point, Mzekezeke once had an accident and disappeared for a few months. Guess what? In that period, DJ Sbu was seen walking in crutches!
Mzekezeke resurfaced in 2018 in his famous orange overall and black mask, insisting that his taxi business was keeping him occupied. He came back to become the brand ambassador of DJ Sbu’s energy drink, MoFaya. That raised more suspicions about his identity but Mzekezeke still insisted he wasn’t DJ Sbu.
“People argue that DJ Sbu and I have similar voices, but that doesn’t bother me. We are business partners and that’s why I’m helping him promote MoFaya. We are both passionate about supporting local products,” said Mzekezeke.
DJ Sbu Launches Own Energy Drink
DJ Sbu had announced that he was going to be focusing on his calling: entrepreneurship. In 2015, he launched the first black owned energy drink MoFaya. After getting practically every South African celebrity to pose with the drink, MoFaya became incredibly popular.
Even though MoFaya can now be purchased at leading retail stores and spaza shops, DJ Sbu literally goes to taxi ranks personally to sell the drink! Being the marketing genius he is, he promoted MoFaya at the Metro FM music awards while presenting an award at the podium. Metro FM ended up firing him as their presenter but MoFaya got more publicity and recognition. MoFaya now has twelve soft drink products in the South African Markets!
DJ Sbu Goes to Harvard
He is the founder and chairman of The Sbusiso Leope Education Foundation, which has awarded over 500 bursaries/scholarships to South African students. He also mentors and assists young pupils who have a strong desire to learn.
DJ Sbu was asked to talk as part of a seminar on African business and entrepreneurship at Harvard Business School in Boston, America, in 2018. As you have correctly guessed, he sold the students his drink!
“These guys really thought a MoFaya Hustler like me can give them 100 MoFayas and 100 books for free? It is the ABCs of hustling. Always Be Closing! Sorry but I had to pick up those dollars. It is called planting a seed. If I could have this whole room consuming my products, it means it’s possible to have the whole world consuming our African brands,” he had posted on his Instagram.
DJ Sbu is an epitome of success and spends most his time encouraging the youth to get up and hustle their way out of poverty. He proves true the saying, “If you want something, you’ll make a plan. If you don’t, you will make an excuse.”
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Tell us: What did you learn from DJ Sbu’s journey?