Twelve tech and design startups from the Western Cape (WC) have been awarded their share of a R6.5 million grant from the Design Innovation Seed Fund yesterday.

The Design Innovation Seed Fund was launched last year by the Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism and the Technology Innovation Agency and Cape Craft and Design Institute to give technological innovation or design early stage startups in WC access to financial support, physical space, equipment and resources for prototyping.

A total of 151 applications were received by the Design Innovation Seed Fund.

The twelve startups that have been granted funding are:

  • Pro Project Engineering, Kuils River – Manufacturers of automatic bag packing machines for use in several industries, including food and beverage.
  • PURIS, Paarl – Producers of a natural aroma chemical.
  • Sea Monster, Gardens – Creators of digital content and animation which can be integrated into school curriculum.
  • GoMetro, Tygervalley – Traffic monitoring and publication transportation app.
  • ASHTECH, Ottery – Reporting and monitoring system for food safety industry, which can be used on smartphones and tablets.
  • iMobiMaMa, Claremont – An interactive mobile health service that provides pregnant mothers with necessary information and services insure the safe delivery of healthy babies.
  • Forge Technologies, Woodstock – Software company and creators of products such as a rewards-based maths and physical science game aimed at high school learners in Grades 10 to 12.
  • Nervedata, Cape Town CBD – Makers of smart devices that track real-time data, including assets and staff, for businesses.
  • Ajax Manufacturing, Paarden Eiland – Manufacturing support for business offering aluminium and plastic products beginning from design to final assembly.
  • Stroketech, Vredenburg – Makers of waterproof headsets for swimmers and extreme watersport athletes, allowing real time communication and audio.
  • Ecoequilibrium, Landsdowne – Solar-powered pool cleaner, LED lights, solar panel and car inverter manufacturers.
  • Sicame, Maitland – Solar disconnector manufacturers.

“We see South Africans like Mark Shuttleworth and Elon Musk who are changing the world because they invested in their ideas. Seeing the ideas of the entrepreneurs here today, I’m confident that South Africa’s next big innovator will come from the Design Park,” said WC MEC of economic opportunities Alan Winde.

“We want to improve the success rate of businesses in the sector by at least 30%. Ultimately this could see the creation of 14 000 jobs.”

[Source – South African Government, Image – Shutterstock]