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SteadiDrone wins 2013 Step-Up Technology Innovation awards

Issued by: U-Start | 5 Dec 2013 12:13
The Step-Up Technology Innovation Competition finals were hosted in Johannesburg on 21 and 22 November 2013, a business idea competition, aimed specifically at South African inventors and innovators, sponsored by government's Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) and Sasol's enterprise development vehicle, Sasol ChemCity.
The focus of the competition was on business development and support activities on SME's, entrepreneurs and to assist in commercialising technology-based businesses that could have innovative social and economic success for South Africa in the long-term.

The competition was open to early-stage innovators working on projects or ideas with commercial potential, or more established innovation-based SMMEs in need of financial or non-financial support in scaling up.

There were over 400 entries and 35 finalists with 14 final winners for the pilot project. "This has turned out to be the 'Idols of innovation' in South Africa. The TIA has already confirmed their sponsorship for next year, so we will definitely be running the competition again." says Project Director Martin Feinstein, whose company, Traction, runs the programme.

U-Start sponsored over R100,000 in sponsorship for the ICT winner SteadiDrone who will be traveling to Italy next year to meet investors, gain access to international markets networks and mentorship through the International U-Start #Bloom 2014 hosted annually in Milan, Italy.

"U-Start is proud to have joined forces with the leading corporate, VC and technology partners at Step Up and is committed to making sure that the best and brightest innovative ideas in emerging markets get unparalleled access to capital, resources and markets globally through its global advisory service." - Zachariah George, COO of U-Start South Africa.

The winners of the different categories of the Step-Up Technology Innovation competition were:

ICT: Duran and Alexa de Villiers (Steadidrone), who design aerial vehicles specialising in advanced aerial photography, HD filming and aerial imaging platforms for the commercial, industrial and film industries. SteadiDrone H6X from SteadiDrone on Vimeo or Facebook.

Chemicals: Jeremy Klaasen (Kraalbos Bio-Health Products) is developing a unique, multifunctional cosmetic ingredient that delivers herbal attributes to personal care products as well as a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity.

Mining and manufacturing: Ismael Hassen and Rashaad Musa (CSR-Africa Tank Repairs) designed Bitu-Box, a mobile storage or transport unit for bulk bitumen with an integrated heating system that offers advantages over the conventional drum. This design has a life span of seven years versus drums that can only be used once-off, allows for faster depot turnaround times with less labour, and eliminates environmental air pollution.

Energy: Bryan Anderson and Jacques Verwey (Delta Steam Systems) developed the Delta Venturi Steam Trap, a technologically advanced device that is able to remove water from a steam system, while keeping the high-pressure steam in the system, without the use of moving parts.

Health and biotechnology: Drew van der Riet (Advanced Affordable Prosthetics) and Xoliswa Malinga and Malegola Mohlala (BB Unbraid Spray) were joint winners. Van der Riet presented a concept that brings the latest innovations in research to the field of upper limb electromyography prosthetics, for example restoring the sense of touch to the wearer of the prosthesis. Malinga and Mohlala developed Unbraid Spray that biochemically breaks down the synthetic polymer used to manufacture artificial hair used for braiding of hair, allowing braids to be rapidly detached from natural hair.

Green environment: Michael Suttner (Interloop Global) presented The Lightie, an efficient patent-pending test-tube shaped solar-powered light bulb that has been designed to fit into a standard PET soda bottle, converting the bottle into a multifunctional solar-powered lantern or task light.

Food and agriculture: Amelia Rampersad (Bio Research and Development) presented Flypot, a flytrap equipped with special bio-engineered bait designed to attract fly species common in agricultural areas. The trap has a sealable mechanism for hygienic disposal.

These events highlight the massive potential of SME's in South Africa and wonderful companies that are being acknowledged for their inventions, IP and innovations.

For more information on how to get onto the U-Start Platform and or check out www.u-start.biz

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