Climate Innovation Centre South Africa (CICSA) absorb three Green Innovators Pitch 7.0 winners

Climate Innovation Centre South Africa (CICSA) absorb three Green Innovators Pitch 7.0 winners

By Xolisile Dlou

Following the success of the Green Youth Indaba 2022, held from the 29th to 30th of June, the Climate Innovation Centre South Africa (CICSA) has absorbed three of the Green Innovators Pitch 7.0 winners.

The programme is under The Innovation Hub. The Green Innovators Pitch invited inventors, innovators, green entrepreneurs, green start-up companies, small green businesses, universities, students, science councils, and technology transfer offices to showcase their green technology businesses and green ideas the programme aims to provide business development support to start-ups in the South African green economy in collaboration with the World Bank’s InfoDey, and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA)’s green fund.

Sisi Nxumalo, the winner of the competition, expressed her happiness in an exclusive interview with Green Youth Connect after learning that they had been absorbed by the programme. As someone who has always admired the Innovation Hub, she said, “I felt very excited, as I have always looked up to The Innovation Hub.” She cited a prior application in her statement. “I actually applied to be part of an incubation programme through The Innovation Hub about 5 years ago with my first business. Now I feel more confident in myself and my business to truly benefit from what The Innovation Hub Programme has to offer,” said Nxumalo.


She went on to say that they had recently completed onboarding and that they are eager to collaborate with experts in the waste industry and business in general. She expressed that they are looking forward to meeting with the patenting and commercialization team. She concluded by saying “Pitching is everything, whether you have 5 mins or one minute, when you come into contact with people who want to listen to you, you have to know how to Pitch Perfect!”

When she learned that she had been absorbed by The Innovation Hub programme, first runner-up Rene Molepo said that she felt a great sense of honour and excitement. She further added that “My experience thus far has been eye-opening to vast opportunities that exist for me as a female entrepreneur.”

She went on to say that “As an introverted person who is an entrepreneur, I did not necessarily understand the importance of being out there and networking with other entrepreneurs/stakeholders, whether in the same field or not. I have learned the importance of networking. Thus, the quote ‘Your network is your net worth,” she said. She concluded by saying that she has been exposed to various opportunities “Just to name a few, Funding opportunities, assistance with legalities (IP registration, SABS process) and the networking engagements that will propel me as an entrepreneur.”

The second runner up Lungile Marhungane said that “I was so excited as I had heard of the Innovation hub for years, but I wasn’t too sure how I would be absorbed by the Hub. For me this is a lifetime opportunity that will take my business to the next level.” She further mentioned that the experience has been a bliss for her, and her mentor has reached out and she is excited about their meeting. She added that “the contracts that we had to sign taught me that it is important to have agreements in writing when running a business as it also gives a sense of belonging and responsibilities,” said Marhungane.

In closing, she mentioned that “this is very important for me as it will assist me so much with product development and getting my products out there for retail and ensuring that it meets the standards of the market. Also, in terms of linkages and networks, I believe this opportunity will open up more.”








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