After more than one and a half million votes were received, 30-year-old model and entrepreneur Sashi Naidoo, born and raised in Port Elizabeth, walked away with top honours this year as FHM’s Sexiest Woman in the World 2011.
While at the Monte Carlo Grand Prix, Sashi received a text message from the editor of FHM, Hagen Engler, to tell her that she had won the title as FHM’s Sexiest Woman in the World for 2011. “I was so shocked and overjoyed that I had to read the message four times before it sank it. The first person that I told was my good friend Marion Hope, who is also a booker at my modelling agency, Alushi Model Management.”
Says Engler: “Sashi is one of the true beauties of our time and a most deserving winner for FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2011. She is everything a man could wish for in a woman; gorgeous, vivacious, funny and exciting to be around. She’s the very definition of sexy, as far as I’m concerned, and also in the eyes of the FHM readers, who have voted for her in their thousands.”
From Oz to Alushi
After she left school, Sashi spent a year in Australia as a Rotary exchange student. She then moved to Johannesburg to study chiropractic medicine, and had many jobs while studying, including waitressing, hostessing, promoting and floral design, amongst others. After her studies, she started an events company, Vigor 8, but most importantly she got into modelling and acting, which ultimately lead to the start of Alushi. “I completed the five years of theoretical training towards chiropractic, but at the end of my second year in the clinic the pressure of having five jobs was getting to me, so I had to make a decision. I chose to go with Alushi and I’m grateful every single day for making that decision.”
Chiropractic medicine’s loss is modelling’s gain – and Alushi’s gain, of course
Today Sashi owns Alushi Model Management, a modelling agency that aims to empower their artists with knowledge of building their brand and see it as vital that there is constant transparency, as integrity is the core foundation of their business. “We’ve recently started a new division called A-list Promotions, which focuses on organising events and promotions.” Apart from being the owner of a successful modelling agency, she is also the ambassador for Audi A1 and the nationwide face for Sorbet. Sashi has also made her appearance on Backstage and Egoli and was the winner of the Tropika Island of Treasure in 2009.
Bright and beautiful
“Sashi’s a strong, aspirational role model for young South African women. She owns a model agency, she’s a model and actress herself, she’s ambitious and super-intelligent and she’s one of the most beautiful women one could hope to lay eyes on. She’s also a prominent celebrity thanks to her appearances on Backstage and Egoli and her win in the Tropika Island of Treasure,” says Engler.
According to Sashi, there are two sides to her personality. “On the one hand I’m focussed, determined and very work orientated, but all of my friends will tell you that I can also be like a glass of champagne; bubbly and the life of a party.”
Sashi loves to travel and her latest hobby is wine collecting and tasting. ‘At the moment I’m very good at the tasting part, and not so good at the collecting part, so I’ll have to work on that’
Sashi believes that the title comes with great perks and career opportunities. “This title really means a lot to me. I’ve been modelling for 10 years now, so to be voted as FHM’s Sexiest Woman in the World at the culmination of my career is really the biggest honour I think I could have received. For now I will just have to be patient and see what the future holds for me.”
When asked what the one thing is that people might not know about her, Sashi replied: “People might be surprised to know that I went through high school with a mono-brow, braces and teenage acne. I was definitely the last girl to be asked to the matric dance.”
The acknowledgement is great
Being a celebrity and constantly being in the public’s eye can be difficult sometimes, but Sashi believes that it definitely benefits her company. “Due to the amount of exposure I get as a ‘celebrity’, the company is regarded as one of the top agencies in Johannesburg, after just three years of existence. I also find it very flattering when people do come up to me in public for a photograph or autograph; it’s really nice to be acknowledged for the work that I do.”
Sashi says that she has numerous goals on the business front, which she will keep quiet for now, but her ultimate goal in life is to remain happy!
Sashi believes that her secret to success is that she stays true to her passions in life, and that way it is very easy to approach everything she does with love, discipline and focus. Sashi’s philosophy to life is “Be the change you want to see in the world”, the famous words of Mahatma Ghandi.
Says Engler: “Sashi has worked with FHM for years, from her first appearance as FHM Student of the Month, through her first time in the FHM Calendar, two FHM covers and hosting a FHM Calendar TV special on M-Net. She’s well known to the magazine and to the FHM readers. We’re proud to have her as FHM’s Sexiest Woman in South Africa and we looked forward to working with her on some exciting projects in future.”
The July issue of FHM, with the special FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World supplement, is on sale now.
For more information, visit fhm.co.za or m.fhm.co.za via your mobile phone’s internet browser.
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