Empowerment Through Entrepreneurship
$150,000 PRIZE OPENS FOR INNOVATIVE
ENTREPRENEURS WITH SOLUTIONS TO
A competition, which will award prizes to entrepreneurs and innovators
who deliver market-oriented solutions for African development, has
been announced by the African Innovation Foundation (AIF).
AIF calls for entries for the 2014 Innovation Prize for Africa. The prestigious
prize, presented annually since 2012, aims at encouraging innovations
that contribute to sustainable development in Africa. The winning
submission will be awarded a prize of $100,000, with two additional $25,
000, one for the runner up with an innovation with the best business
potential and the other one for the runner up with the innovation with
the best social impact.
Therefore, the Innovation Prize for Africa invites African entrepreneurs
and innovators to propose projects that unlock new African potential
under one of five categories that include agriculture and agribusiness,
environment, energy and water, health and well-being, ICT applications,
and manufacturing and services industries.
“The IPA team believes that the best way to build Africa’s capacity is to
invest in local innovation and entrepreneurship. This prize encourages
Africans to develop creative ways to overcome everyday challenges,”
said AIF founder Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais.
The IPA 2013 was awarded to South Africa’s AgriProtein for its innovative
approach to nutrient recycling – a method that uses waste and fly
larvae to produce natural animal feed. The 2013 prize also recognised
two additional winners for their contributions to African innovation. In
the business potential category, Hassine Labaied and Anis Aouini from
Saphon Energy (Tunisia) received $25, 000 for creating a bladeless wind
1 $150,000 Prize Opens for Innovative
Entrepreneurs with Solutions to
2 Cape Entrepreneurs up the Ante
2 Nigeria to Host Africa
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Empowerment Through Entrepreneurship
In the social impact category, Sanoussi Diakite (Senegal)
received $25, 000 for developing and distributing a thermal
powered machine that husks 5 kilogrammes of fonio – an
important and healthy West African cereal – in just eight
minutes. This innovation increases accessibility to a nutritious
African staple food source and addresses challenges
associated with its consumption.
With more than 1,350 applications received to date, the IPA
aims to support Africans’ efforts to develop new products,
increase efficiency and drive cost-savings on the continent.
The IPA also provides a platform for African innovators to
showcase their solutions to potential investors and seek
partners to scale up their marketable concepts. Only
innovations by Africans and for Africans are eligible to enter.
Africans in the Diaspora can also apply if their innovations
are of significance to Africa.
The registration deadline for the 2014 prize has been set
for October 31, 2013. Detailed information of competition
categories, conditions of entry and submission procedures
are available on the Innovation Prize for Africa website.
Business Day. 2013. $150, 000 prize opens for innovative
entrepreneurs with solutions to African challenges.
Business Day [online]. 12 August 2013. Available at www.
challenges (accessed 12 August 2013).
In a report released in early 2013, South Africa showed
dismal performance in comparison to other emerging
countries in creating new entrepreneurs. The 2012 Global
Entrepreneurship Monitor report stated that entrepreneurship
statistics were lower in 2012 than that of the previous year.
Daniel Marcus, Cape-based chief executive officer of
conference and events company Living Your Brand says
that while entrepreneurial success is possible in South Africa,
a positive outlook and a never-say-die attitude are key for
Speaking of his own experience, Daniel says that Living Your
Brand, which this month celebrates three years in operation, Lagos — The board of International Federation of Training
and Development Organisation (IFTDO) has granted
was born out of fresh thinking and a general frustration with
the state of a certain niche. Together with Jaco van Zyl and
Jacobus le Roux, who run the events and conferencing
divisions of the business, Daniel has established Living
Your Brand as one of South Africa’s leading events and
conferencing agencies in just three short years.
“I’m a firm believer in the old cliché that ‘you can never be
too positive’. In South Africa there are so many negatives
that we could focus on instead of finding our individual
window of opportunity and jumping at it.” Daniel started
Living Your Brand after a series of both successful and
unsuccessful business ventures, to which he attributes the
success of the company. “You’re unlikely to succeed unless
you’ve experienced failure at some point.”
In addition to private events, Daniel and his team
conceptualised the popular Integrated Marketing
Communications conference (IMC) concept. The
conference, which is now in its fourth year, has run in both
Johannesburg and Cape Town – with a third event to
be held in London in 2014. He credits the success of the
concept to the passion and enthusiasm of the team at
Living Your Brand, as well as the gap they filled by focusing
on integration in the marketing sector.
Over the past three years the company has built up an
impressive client profile which includes brands such as
Bentley SA, FNB Wealth, Nedbank Capital, Sanlam Investment
Management, Vodacom, Standard Bank, Lanxess, Landis &
Gyr, GEMS and The Jacob Zuma Foundation.
“We are very excited about what the future holds for the
company as well as the industry. The passion and belief
in achieving new heights for clients that our team brings
everyday is what will continue to set us apart,” says Daniel.
Cape Business News. 2013. Cape Entrepreneurs up the Ante.
Cape Business News [blog]. 12 August 2013. Available at
http://www.cbn.co.za/dailynews/6917.html (accessed 12
NIGERIA TO HOST AFRICA
CAPE ENTREPRENEURS UP THE
CAPE BUSINESS NEWS
3Empowerment Through Entrepreneurship
Nigeria the hosting right of the 7th African Regional
Entrepreneurship Conference in November 2013.
At a press briefing heralding the conference in Lagos,
Chairman, Conference Planning Committee, Rev. Tunde
Salawu said the international conference which is to hold
in November, 2013 in Abuja is strategically employed to
address growing unemployment crisis in Africa.
“The summit is to harness resources across the continent
and to use skill acquisition in different ramifications to solve
youth unemployment which has become a scourge in the
whole of African continent. And it is on that basis we have
chosen as a theme for the conference: “Skills Acquisition
as a panacea for youth unemployment in Africa” Salawu
According to the Organising Committee Chairman,
participants at the summit are drawn from both public and
private sectors of all African countries.
Salawu said topics such as economic and social impact
of youth unemployment in Africa, leveraging on ICT for
skill acquisition and youth employment, embedding
entrepreneurship in African education curriculum as well
the Public-Private Partnership option in addressing Skills
Development and Employment Crisis, among others.
Oyewole, N. 2013. Africa: Nigeria to Host Africa
Entrepreneurship Summit. Daily Trust (online). 20 July 2013.
Available at http://allafrica.com/stories/201307221353.html
(accessed 12 August 2013).
The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank