The Dragon’s Den and the Pitch Auction were some of the highlights of the event. These exciting sessions introduced the most promising inventions. In the Dragon’s Den, they competed for support from seasoned business leaders, while the Pitch Auction enabled companies and individuals to pledge financial or in-kind support to their favourite emerging entrepreneurs. MTC came onboard with the biggest sponsorship for the event, along with Cornastone, Veya ICT and Schoemans. The Embassy of Finland funds the running of the Tech Innovation Hub. “We strongly believe local technology innovation has much to give to the nation,” said Dr Licky Erastus, MTC’s Chief Technology Officer, calling upon other companies to follow MTC’s lead.
The 37 inventions spanned a wide range of business and social endeavours and many were applicable to more than one field.
For example, the line-up of local inventions included technologies to ensure safe Internet for children; software and hardware to help in business administration, as well as various digital learning tools that enhance reading skills.
“Many students create technological solutions while studying and once they are done, their graduation from university signals the death of their ideas. Therefore, we need events of this nature to exhibit innovation,” said Hon Dr Itah Kandjii-Murangi, Minister: Higher Education, Training and Innovation. “We need more enabling platforms”, states Prof Heike Winschiers-Theophilus, co-founder of the Tech Innovation Hub. “Our indigenous communities and young people have much to offer in addressing national issues through tech innovation.”