13 September 2019. The Innovation Hub, the innovation agency of the Gauteng Province, released the Gauteng City Region Market Assessment Reports on Thursday, 12 September 2019. Attended by academics and entrepreneurs amongst others, the event was held at The Innovation Hub’s Conferencing Venue in Lynnwood, Tshwane.
The purpose of these reports was to outline market opportunities for small, micro and medium enterprises (SMMEs)s across the three sectors of the Green Economy that TIH focuses on , by describing the policy and regulatory landscape, reviewing the mechanisms and business models in, evaluating the size of Gauteng’s potential market, analysing the value chain and summarising barriers and recommendations for SMMEs to access the market. In his welcome address, Tsietsi Maleho, The Innovation Hub’s General Manager for Monitoring, Evaluation & Partnerships, outlined the programme for the day.
Presenting the Market Intelligence Report insights, The Innovation Hub’s General Manager for the Green Economy, Dr Rethabile Melamu said these documents intend to provide intelligence to current and aspiring entrepreneurs, of the opportunities in the clean energy, waste management and water & sanitation sectors. “The report will also inform recruitment of new start-ups into the incubation programme, identify opportunities to lobby for policy interventions and explore additional strategic partnerships that will strengthen the ecosystem’s ability to support entrepreneurship,” explained Dr Melamu.
There were also inputs and comments provided by Professor Linda Godfrey, a Senior Scientist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and Dr Richard Doyle, Treasurer and board member at the South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA). In her assessment, Professor Godfrey said one of the trends we have seen globally is the issue of decentralization of services, the fact that governments are struggling to keep up with the rate of urbanization, population growth and service delivery. “With that comes the decentralization of services which we are seeing in energy, water and certainly waste where in South East Asia there are discussions around how communities have to take responsibility for waste management themselves and this results in lots of opportunities for innovation and small business development” she stated. In his remarks, Dr Doyle said the market sizing was well-done in the report and the numbers are impressive. “Most of the analyses in the sector is based around very large government renewable energy programmes and I believe the number of jobs is under estimated,” stated Doyle.
A panel made up of Dr Melamu, Prof Godfrey, Dr Doyle, E-Waste Africa’s Praveshen Naidoo, NuLeaf’s Jonathan Chatikobo and Boost Mechanics’ Ipeleng Mathebula took part in a question and answer session where they responded to attendees’ questions. The audience, mostly consisting of entrepreneurs, were given an opportunity to pose questions to the panelists on opportunities in the waste, energy and water sectors. Facilitating this session was the event’s MC, Mr Niveshen Govender, a board member at the South African Renewable Energy Council and Chief Operations Officer of SAPVIA.
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About The Innovation Hub
The Innovation Hub, the innovation agency of the Gauteng Province is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency. It was established in 2001 by the Gauteng Provincial Government through its Department of Economic Development to promote economic development and competitiveness of Gauteng through innovation.
The Innovation Hub offers several programmes in the Bio-economy (agro-processing and pharmaceutical), Smart Industries (ICT and advanced manufacturing) and Green Economy (Water purification, waste management and renewable energy). In addition, as an innovation agency, The Innovation Hub operates a range of Skills Development and innovation enabling programmes both in the science park and throughout the Gauteng region. For more information visit www.theinnovationhub.com