This morning and Standard Bank hosted the Innovation Challenge at Leaderex 2017.

After evaluating pitches for the next big idea, a group of judges decided on eight entrepreneurs whose ideas stand the greatest chance of turning into viable businesses.

After a wonderful morning that had us going “Why didn’t we think of that?”, it brings us great pleasure to announce the winners of the challenge.

In third place we have Cubic 38 headed by Mzokhona Maxase, which takes old tyres and recycles them into new products such as shoe polish and tyre shine.

In second place we have a familiar face in Evan Walther who heads up Fitkey (which you can find out more about here); he is looking to branch out and offer a similar service to beauty salons and other smaller businesses which often struggle to compete against the biggest companies in South Africa.

And finally, our winner is Matthew Alcock, who is trying to bring electricity to remote parts of Africa using solar power and smart electronics.

Matthew Alcock has won himself R25 000.

The top three finalists will now be eligible to join the Standard Bank Incubator.

We’ll be profiling all the finalists that took part in the Innovation Challenge later this week, so keep an eye on for that.

For now, though, we’d like to congratulate all of the contestants and send a big thank you to Standard Bank for making this competition possible.