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Natasha Odendaal | 30 June 2023

A new innovation centre aimed at enhancing innovation within the small, medium-sized and microenterprise (SMME) space has been launched at State Information Technology Agency’s (Sita’s) Centurion offices.

The Motheo Innovation Centre, an initiative of Sita in partnership with Software AG, provides the facilities needed by South African innovators and SMMEs in the information and communications technology industry to collaborate and create avenues for development that work to create sustainable and entrepreneurial SMMEs.

“We are excited to open our third innovation centre. These innovation centres are critical to us transforming this country. They are part of this fabric that we are creating that will cover all of the country to ensure that youth, SMMEs and women-owned businesses can come together and cocreate with us,” Sita MD Dr Bongani Andy Mabaso said during the launch on Friday.

The Motheo Innovation Centre, unveiled on Friday by Communications and Digital Technologies Minister Mondli Gungubele, aims to stimulate, encourage and empower SMMEs and foster the development and commercialisation of groundbreaking inventions, technology-based products, services and solutions.

“We want to create an ecosystem where innovation can thrive and create a Silicon Valley in Africa. We are still going to open more innovation centres. This is just the start,” he continued, noting the need to leverage innovation and technology to alleviate some of the challenges faced by South Africa.

Software AG country leader Itayi Mandonga added that, in addition to building skills in South Africa, what is important for the company is the product of the centre: the individual that is going to change their lives, change their communities and change South Africa by making use of the innovation centre.

“We should not build what is already there. Research and development is building what does not yet exist, it is about new intellectual property,” concluded Mabaso.

‘Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER’.


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