SA’s most innovative new companies in funding showdown

The ‘Olympics for Startups’ is underway in SA, offering a last opportunity for wild cards to enter.

Get In The Ring, an international business challenge described as the “Olympics for Startups”, is in full swing in South Africa as businesses compete for top honours and funding opportunities, and to be crowned the South African winner.

Get In The Ring is presented locally by the REAL Entrepreneur Institute (Pty) Ltd in partnership with the Dutch Embassy, North West University Vaal, The Innovation Hub, Heineken and Silicon Cape. The start-up competition, which takes place in 80 countries worldwide, will see city winners from the Western Cape, North West and Gauteng going through to the national finals on 17 – 18 November 2015 to decide who will participate in the African finals in January next year and ultimately the international finals in Colombia in March next year, where finalists will meet prospective funders, investors and partners and gain valuable international exposure.

The hotly-contested competition sees innovative new businesses with a proven business case participating in workshops, one-on-one pitches, and finals battles in the ring.

During Get In The Ring’s first year in South Africa in 2014, Shalton Mothwa (EpoChip) and Justin Coetzee (GoMetro) represented South Africa at the African Regional finals in Rwanda, with GoMetro winning the African finals and ultimately being named a runner-up in the international competition. GoMetro secured a successful round of funding at the African regional final in Rwanda.

Get In The Ring, is one of 50 Dutch projects associated with the House of The Future programme. It is fast growing in stature in South Africa following its local debut last year. In only three years, Get In The Ring has grown from a local event in the Netherlands, to a global competition with participants from 64 countries, connecting more than 3000 entrepreneurs to thousands of funders and millions of fans.

House of the Future in Johannesburg and Garden of the Future in Cape Town are two events initiated by the Netherlands stimulating and celebrating cooperation between South Africa and the Netherlands “House of The Future, is a five day event from 16-20 November, and will take place during the official visit of Dutch Prime Minister Mr. Mark Rutte and Minister of Agriculture Ms Sharon Dijksma accompanied by a trade mission of over 75 Dutch companies. These events will ask the question: how can we #cocreateSA? At this high profile event, Get In The Ring will be a highlight, featuring two days of judging and presentations and culminating in the naming of the South African winner.

Johann Landsberg, Manager of the bHive Enterprise Development Centre at NWU Vaal, says Get In The Ring is an important addition to bHive’s range of enterprise development programmes already impacting thousands of students and start ups. “Get In The Ring seeks innovative entrepreneurs across all sectors, who have products or services that can be scaled internationally,” he says. Landsberg believes that while South Africans can be highly innovative, many lack the entrepreneurial skills needed to take their businesses to scale. “We need to focus on creating employers and not just employees,” he says. Get In The Ring aims to support this goal by giving entrepreneurs a unique platform to showcase their innovations to a potentially global audience.

For further information, to enter as a wild card, or to nominate a start-up go to Wild-card entries close on Monday 9 November 2015.


Get In The Ring South Africa 2015 city finals winners:

Vaal triangle city final

Hosted by North-West University, Vaal Triangle Campus & bhive EDC, 27 August

Winning startups:

1. NEWTECH RAIL (PTY) LTD (Jan Jooste): cheaper and more effective overhead systems for increased train speed.

2. Phat Pat Catering (Patricia Esterhuizen): consulting for the catering industry

3. Solar Bliss (William Hartzer): solar systems

Johannesburg/Pretoria city final

Hosted by The REAL Success Network in partnership with The Innovation Hub, 17 October 2015

Judged by Jeremy Lang, Regional GM from Business Partners, serial entrepreneur Martin Gering, who has been in business for over 60 years,  and Fredell Jacobs, GM of the Innovation Hub and CEO of South African Start-up Index (SASi)

Winning startups:

1. UmoyAir (Sapho Maqhwazima): a cross network, free mobile call platform

2. Tousca Pty Ltd ( Dorian Toussaint): a global ground transport aggregator using a unique online tool.

3. ADFIRE CREATIVE M3DIA (James Sands): an app that lets anyone create their own 3D illusions.

Cape Town Winning Start-Ups

Judged by Themi Stergianos, Anton Roelofse from Business Partners and Vasili Sofiadelis from Visions2Ventures

1. SnappSales (Karen Wessels): Innovative outsourced sales support.

2. Stokvella (Sebastian Daniels): an app designed to help regulate the Stokvel market by introducing a system of accountability and transparency to build trust.

3. AdCanvas – Branded coffee cups with insignia or for a chosen campaign message.

Source: Get In the Ring

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