The Chivas Venture, the search to identify the most promising social entrepreneurs globally has unveiled 30 start-ups, among them three from Africa, as finalists of its $1 million venture funding competition.
From Kenya, Dickson Ochieng’s Sanivation provides communities with modern toilets, enabling them to dispose of toxic waste in a clean, safe and efficient way which it then transforms into briquettes, a clean burning alternative to charcoal.
By displacing charcoal as a source of energy, Sanivation helps combat deforestation. It also prevents the contamination of local water sources, reducing the risk of diseases and child mortality.
Should it win its $250, 000 share of the Chivas Venture funding, Sanivation hopes to scale its target of impacting more than one million people by 2020.
Nigeria’s Chioma Okuno was fined for trashing waste inappropriately while on vacation abroad. Her company Recycle Points was motivated by this incident.
The incentive-based model collects recyclable waste materials from registered households and rewards them with points which they can accumulate and redeem for cash or other useful items through its iRecycle Store.
Recycled waste is processed and then sold on to recycling plants for use as raw materials for new products.
Recycle Points helps prevent the emission of greenhouse gasses while creating jobs and opportunities for underprivileged communities. Funding would allow it to further its impact on the environment and society.
James Steere’s I-Drop Water installs water purification and dispensing units at the point of sale. Shoppers refill water containers, reducing plastic waste and is very affordable, 80 per cent cheaper than bottled water.
The Chivas Venture funding would enable the company grow its fleet of I-Drop units and expand into markets outside South Africa where its innovative product and business model are required.
The 30 finalists have travelled to Oxford for an Accelerator Programme, an intensive five days of learning where they have an opportunity to develop leadership skills, take part in practical workshops and be inspired by global experts on matters social start-ups.
“We were blown away by the calibre of entries for this year’s Chivas Venture competition. The businesses are a great example of the ingenuity and passion of entrepreneurs across the world who are committed to creating a better world for generations to come,” Richard Black, Chivas Regal Global Brand Director said.
The public can vote for their favourite finalist through a live voting system from Monday May 1st to Sunday June 4th, 2017, determining how the first $250,000 in funding is split among the finalists.
The winner(s) of the remaining $750,000 in funding will be decided on Thursday July 13th at the Chivas Venture Final after a high-stakes pitch in front of the judges and a live audience.
The Chivas Venture was founded in 2014 and has received 6, 000 applications from across six continents to date.
Source: Footprint to Africa