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KwaMbonambi entrepreneur’s dream to change the world

ZULULAND OBSERVER / 02 FEBRUARY 2018 - 15.00 / LAURIE SMITH

‘Entrepreneurship is a key lever to job creation in any country’

SIMANGALISO Zungu (34) says he always knew he was destined to make his mark in the specialised and highly competitive world of technology and innovation.

Simangaliso Zungu from KwaMbonambi is spearheading a ground-breaking technological

gadget that could change the lives of millions of cellphone users

The founder and Managing Director of Sengwayo Group based in KwaMbonambi, is currently working on a major project to develop a breakthrough invention – a mobile power harvester for mobile devices.

Out of 198 entries, Zungu’s cutting-edge invention won the second special award at the Inkunz’isematholeni Youth in Business Awards event recently.

He is developing the PoEX Module, a highly efficient power extending module.

It is an eco-friendly, continuous power harvester designed to extend the battery life of mobile devices and is built into cellphones and tablets.

Mobile communication devices are charged without having to connect to a centralised power source or to any portable power banks.

Inkunz’isematholeni is a flagship programme of Ithala Development Finance Corporation that attracts youth with innovative and sustainable business concepts, and provides incubation and start-up capital in their journey to becoming seasoned entrepreneurs.

The father of two explained how his passion for entrepreneurship developed from early childhood.

‘Since high school my path to achieve my passion was clear – either I enrol for a BTech qualification in clinical technology or become an entrepreneur,’ said Zungu.

The year after he matriculated from Mbusowabathethwa High School in KwaMbonambi, he obtained a certificate in Point-of-Sale from the Empangeni Commercial College.

Computer classes

In 2003 he volunteered his time at the Centre for Education and Enterprise Development (CEED), now known as the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), where he facilitated basic introduction to computers classes and organised career guidance workshops for high school learners.

From 2005 to 2006 he worked at the Durban ICC as a Technical Administrator, and after responding to an advertisement calling on applicants to enroll for environmental management training at the Institute for Zero Waste in Africa (IZWA), he was invited to write an introductory test.

So impressed was the national co-ordinator of the institute with his results that he was appointed as a facilitator as opposed to a trainee.

While at IZWA, Zungu enrolled for a New Venture Creation Programme NQF Level 4, where he developed a plan to outsource and market an ‘i-Note Pen’ which resembles and functions like a standard pen, but is fitted with a receiver that captures all handwritten notes before it converts to a computerised format, thereby eliminating the need to retype on a computer.

While the pen was outsourced from Britain and not his novel creation, the device was supplied to major law firms, courts, departments of the eThekwini Municipality and offices of the MECs in KwaZulu-Natal.

Zungu regards himself as a futurist and an inventor.

He has been working on the PoEX Module concept for the past two years and prides himself in handling all aspects of his business.

‘The project costs about R2.5-million for product development (working prototype), IP protection and marketing.

This is where Ithala and programme partners Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) and Invotech stepped in to assist,’ said Zungu.

‘Entrepreneurship is a key lever to job creation in any country. I am looking forward to joining forces with major cellphone and tablet manufactures to create much needed job opportunities,’ he said.

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LINK : https://zululandobserver.co.za/164171/kwambonambi-entrepreneurs-dream-change-world/

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