About Us

AJP Group boldly creates.

We are proudly entrepreneurial. Given our proven track record and the foundation of our solid businesses carefully built over many years, we have honed that rare knack for recognising opportunities for additional growth. More importantly, at AJP Group we know how to translate opportunities into tangible businesses.

AJP Group quietly serves.

The long-term success and continuity of a privately-owned company such as the AJP Group is largely attributable to the shared vision of the founders, which has been continually translated by our partners and our management team into a clear commitment to the growth and prosperity of the group.

At AJP Group, we have conducted our business for over 20 years according to the principles of fairness and family values. We develop our team members and sponsor the communities we serve. We proudly serve our loyal customers who support us consistently, while maintaining a competitive and ethical culture.

AJP Group constantly grows.

AJP Group’s core business activities are franchised retail businesses, retail property development & management and a growing food division. Our franchised retail businesses include liquor stores, clothing stores, supermarketsand pharmacies within the Pick n Pay franchise. In 2014 we expanded into fuel retail stores with BP, which includes the Express and Wild Bean brands. It goes without saying that we continually seek opportunities to extend our retail network.

Our retail property investments retain their dominance within their respective trade areas because we understand our market and follow a strategy of leveraging the symbiosis between property and retail.

AJP Foods is the franchisor of the Hava Java coffee shop and dinner concepts as well the custodian of the Qualitas, Passion Patisserie and BushFire Brands.

Our Team

Alexander Baladakis

Alexander Baladakis (C. Eng. M. I. Struct E) - Chairman

With a background in structural engineering, Alexander started his first supermarket in 1982. He has held various directorships within the Spar Group in South Africa and was named as Mr Spar City in 1987. Mr Alex, as he is affectionately known, has dedicated the past 20 years to the Pick n Pay brand. He served as a member of the SAE International Business Committee from 2003 to 2006 and received the Franchise Legend Award from Pick n Pay in 2012.

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John Baladakis

John Baladakis (B.Comm) - Chief Executive Officer

John gained some experience with Spar supermarkets before joining the Pick n Pay group as a franchisee in what was AJP Group’s first Pick n Pay store. He has served on a number of forums at Pick n Pay as well as on the Pick n Pay CEO’s Advisory Committee. He has been named as Pick n Pay Franchise Legend. John is the author of A Franchisee’s Perspective and has been called upon to share his perspective as a franchisee on many platforms. He has served in various leadership capacities in community and charity organisations. In 2015 he was elected as the Chairman of the Franchise Association of South Africa (FASA). Presented with the Pick n Pay Chairman's Award in 2017

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Peter Baladakis

Peter Baladakis (B. Compt Honours) - Chief Operations Officer

Peter’s background in financial management and auditing was gained at BKR South Africa and is a valuable asset to the AJP Group. As COO, Peter runs the Group’s retail division and was named as winner of Pick n Pay’s Store of the Year (Gauteng) in 2005. He is currently serving as a member of Pick n Pay CEO’s Advisory Committee and was named Franchise Legend by Pick n Pay in 2012. Presented with the Pick n Pay Chairman's Award in 2017

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John Philippou

John Philippou (B.Comm; MAP) - Director Of Shared Services & Group Company Secretary

JP, as he is known, joined the group in 2012 having 28 years of experience in the hospitality food sector. He has owned several food businesses and worked with the nino’s group for 23 years, where he played an integral role in helping to establish the brand nationwide. He is the group’s Company Secretary and Director of Shared services.

JP serves in various leadership positions within the Hellenic community and is a strategist by nature.

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Jaydene Potgieter

Jaydene Potgieter - Chief Financial Officer, CA (SA).

A natural leader with a great work ethic that allows for an innate respect amongst her colleagues. Jaydene joined the group in 2017 as a financial manager for the retail division. Owing to her consistent levels of performance and vital financial insights, she was promoted to Head Of Group Finance in 2019.

Jaydene has complemented her learnings with two diplomas from SAIFM(The South African Institute of Financial Markets). With prior experience in corporate accounting roles and the commodities industry she is now playing a vital role in the company’s success and progression.

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