And the Winner is…

As I pen this final Total South Africa Startupper of the Year Blog, I have such mixed emotions.  On the one hand, I’m incredibly thrilled for the extraordinary winners but on the other, I had so much fun on this 6 month journey with.  There’s not much to say in this final blog accept to share with you who the winners are and their incredible projects that will make an impact in South Africa.  But, I do want to say to all of you- make sure you encourage anyone you know with a good idea- an idea that could advance a social cause- to believe in themselves and pursue it with all their heart and soul- we are a better nation when entrepreneurs are supported and thriving.

On the 5th of March 2019, at the Swanky Hyatt Hotel in Johannesburg, I hosted the 2018/19 Total South Africa Startupper of the Year awards event- and, what a wonderful event it was.  Along with Executives from Total and Jury Members as well as of course, the Top 15 Finalist- we celebrated Entrepreneurs and awarded the winners.

This Year’s Winners:

The three winners of the Startupper of the Year by Total Challenge in South Africa are:

– 1st Place, Nonhlanhla Phalama, Davinon Hydrophonics:

This project develops 50x30m hydroponics farms in rural schools/orphanages to farm and sell tomatoes. 30% of the profit are pumped back into school facilities and quality of education. The farming saves water and energy using re-circulation techniques and solar power.

– 2nd Place, Marnie Steyn, Feeding 1 Million:

Marnie created home growing hydroponic farms that function in the back yard of any home to produce organic foods. Homes will be able to generate an income of R3500 extra per month.

– 3rd Place, Kutlwano Ngwarati, Boolyx:

Boolyx Edu-Tech was created in response to the Fees Must Fall movement which swept across South African universities. A student spends R8900 per year on textbooks and other material. Using innovative technologies Boolyx reduce the cost to R1800.

Their Prize Money respectively was as follows:

1st prize winner:  R500 000

2nd prize winner: R250 000

3rd prize winner: R150 000

Along with the resource support, they will have access to coaches and major media exposure.  The winner of the Top Female Entrepreneur award, a new addition to the 2018-2019 Challenge to support women in business, is also Nonhlanhla Phalama from Davinon Hydrophonics.

Thanks again Total South Africa for allowing me to take this journey with you and all the best as you continue to shape South Africa with your vision of supporting young people with socially conscious entrepreneurship ideas!

For more, visit https://startupper-of-the-year-challenge.total.com/en/challenges/south-africa?fbclid=IwAR0GDPyNtfur2O-ZTwIlmJp37xRrp3rT1J45xjjJQpyi7AzqG-8RKmveZT4