UJ’s top 40 for Innovative Business Idea Awards announced

​​​​​​​​​The University of Johannesburg’s (UJ) Vice-Chancellor’s Student Innovative Business Idea Awards, an initiative offering students with promising business ideas an opportunity to transform their plans into business enterprises, has announced the 40 finalists who are in the running to win the R100 000 first prize for presenting the best business idea.​​

In partnership with the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), the initiative was officially launched at UJ’s Soweto Campus on 31 July 2013. It focuses on developing fledgling student business start-up ideas and nurturing business and life skills in equal measure among UJ students to grow future-fit entrepreneurship. Annually, the University will be investing more than R300 000 towards the Awards in order to help students ignite the growth of entrepreneurship.

The summited plans were reviewed by a panel of judges that included representatives from the University’s Vice-Chancellor’s office, business partners and industry, after which the best 40 ideas were shortlisted. The student with the best business idea will ultimately receive the R100 000 cash-prize sponsored by the NYDA, and second and third place will each receive R50 000 and R30 000 respectively. Furthermore, seven participants will each receive R20 000. The prize money must be used for business set-up costs.

“This initiative reflects UJ’s commitment to social responsibility and highlights the significant role education plays in leading change in emergent markets which was prioritised in the New Growth Path driven by Economic Development Minister, Ebrahim Patel. This initiative is a strong launch-pad for student businesses which could have brilliant potential but face future hurdles. These hurdles could be anything from the lack of understanding business concepts that include intellectual property or company and product law, access to finance, pitching for funding or technical skills that include software development and marketing. One could say we are de-risking people who already have ideas worth millions,” says Director of the Centre for Small Business Development (CSBD) Moipone Molotsi.

40 Finalists for the Vice-Chancellor’s Student Innovative Business Idea Awards:

1. 21st Century Cleaning Services

2. Arete Technologies

3. Baked Up Confectionery

4. Closet Space Interim

5. De La Devine Bakery

6. Décor Glass and Aluminium

7. Doors Spectrum Entertainment

8. Ebsha IT

9. Ellantre Life Moments Company

10. Energex Bio Fuel

11. Entrepreneur Business Library

12. E-Work Book

13. Eye N See Entertainment

14. Farmers Footprint

15. Herbed SPF

16. Hlongwane Recycle

17. Hsu’s Hospital

18. Imani Business Enterprise- Munyai

19. Industrial Mattress Cleaning

20. Intermix Recycling

21. John Kaleb Business Solution

22. Ke Tholo Constructions

23. Loyal Book Fellow

24. Lula Enrichment Centre

25. Mbowane Investments

26. MK Hair and Nail Beauty Salon

27. Mo Jah African Art and Literature

28. MT Wheel Alignment and Car Wash

29. One Way Gadgets

30. Pat Pertunia’s Unique Hand Bag

31. Phutanati EC

32. RAA Business Talk

33. Reamohetse Student Transport

34. Secure Tag

35. SoliiiD

36. Squiggle Clothing

37. Strong Foundation Communication

38. The I do company

39. V’s Magic Spray

40. Young and Gifted

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