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Clean, green tech startups go head-to-head in Startup World Cup Pitching Den

More than 40 entrepreneurs and startups participated in the 2018 Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP-SA) of the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) at the SABC Education SA Innovation Summit last month. Nine companies were selected to compete in the regional Startup World Cup Pitching Den. The pitching dens at the summit were used as platforms for the teams to pitch their innovations to external judges and a live audience before the final GCIP-SA TIA judging in October 2018, where the top teams in each sector will be selected.
© Brian Jackson –

The GCIP-SA is part of a global initiative aimed at promoting clean technology innovation and supporting entrepreneurs in growing their SMEs and startups into viable, investment-ready businesses. Following four years as a donor-funded project, the GCIP-SA was fully integrated into TIA in January 2018, and expanded to include innovators and entrepreneurs from the biotechnology and medical devices sectors.

The following teams participated in the regional Startup World Cup Pitching Den at the summit:


  • iWater (team leader: Esta van Heerden): Provide better monitoring and data interpretation of natural resources to develop and implement sustainable remedial solutions to protect resources for clients in the mining, industrial, agriculture, and municipal sectors.
  • Lusec Sanitation (team leader: Alan Hall): A unique pedestal allows for urine diversion, as fertiliser without contamination, while the solid effluent is dried and burnt; eliminating parasites and 99.95% death of all pathogens.
  • Tshepang Holdings (team leader: Tshwafo Motaung): Production of green bricks materials and pilot-scale process control for South African green brick manufacturing.

Medical devices

  • Lodox System (team leader: Carlos Sousa): Hydra Detector is a photon-counting direct conversion detector with improved image quality; it is time and cost effective and has faster and lower dobutamine stress echocardiogram (DSE) scans.
  • Impulse Biomedical: Easy Squeezy (team leader: Giancarlo Beukes): The ZiBi Pen is a cost-effective Adrenaline Auto-Injector which allows for reloadable adrenaline within the device.
  • PRD Logical Solutions (team leader: Portia Mavhungu): The Para-tube is a seating device that retrofits into a wheelchair which has a built-in toilet and biodegradable bags, allowing the individual to use the toilet without having to leave the chair.


  • Igugulabantu (team leader: Zinhle Ngidi): Production of biodiesel from tobacco plants.
  • Afrobodies (team leader: Benedicta Mahlangu): Production of nano-antibodies, i.e. single-domain antibodies from a camelid source using recombinant DNA technology and phage display.
  • Lactease (team leader: Thandeka Jali): Production of a tonic that assists mothers to express milk for breastfeeding.

“As we keep innovating and growing the economy, it is important to celebrate those who are doing so sustainably,” says Dr Audrey Verhaughe, chairperson of the SA Innovation Summit. “We are very impressed by TIA’s GCIP-SA participants and are pleased to have hosted the mock judging event at the summit again this year.”

For more information on TIA, its GCIP-SA business accelerator and the participating innovators, click here.



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