The opportunity for fast-tracked access to funding, mentorship and global exposure has opened up for Cape Town entrepreneurs, with the launch of the third Cape Town Entrepreneurship Competition.  The competition forms part of Cape Town Entrepreneurship Week, which runs from 15 – 21 November, coinciding with Global Entrepreneurship Week.

The competition focuses on technology and innovation in the fields of biotechnology, telecommunications and media, information and communication technology (ICT), ‘clean’ technology, healthcare, and social entrepreneurship.

“Our previous winners have benefitted from competing in a global competition, and networking with a range of people and organisations. It is clear that this competition can play a vital role in identifying talented entrepreneurs who have the potential to build high-growth businesses,” said the City’s Executive Director for Economic, Social Development and Tourism, Mansoor Mohamed. Mohamed is also a Global Nominating Member for the Global Entrepreneurship Competition.

This year, the winners of the Startup and Growth tracks will each receive R50 000 in prize money, while the Idea Track winner will receive R25 000. Apart from the cash prizes, the winners will also be considered for participation in further enterprise development and training programmes offered by the City of Cape Town’s various partners.

The competition opens for registration on 07 October 2010 and entries must be submitted by 15 December 2010. Entrepreneurs wanting to enter can do so from 07 October at www.ctec.org.za. Entry is only available via the online entry form. The winners are expected to be announced by February 2011.

The competition is being managed by the Bandwidth Barn, a leading ICT business incubator and one of the City’s strategic partners. CEO, Chris Vermeulen, says the competition is set to become a flagship annual entrepreneurial event, reflecting the City’s focus on high-impact entrepreneur development.

“The Bandwidth Barn was very excited to see the entrepreneurial talent that emerged from the last Cape Town Entrepreneurship Competition. These businesses have the potential to create many jobs for the residents of Cape Town; it is important that government continues to provide an enabling environment for entrepreneurs,” he said.

Managing Director of Jo’M Cosmetics, Solomon Moriti, says winning the second Cape Town Entrepreneurship Competition gave their company global exposure.

“We were chosen to compete in the final round of the Global Entrepreneurship Competition in Barcelona, and this international summit brought together CEOs, presidents, company directors, Directors of innovation, business people, entrepreneurs and investors from around the world. As a result, we secured two contracts with Spanish companies and were offered opportunities to establish our company in that country.

“We encourage every entrepreneur – start-ups and growth stage companies – who wish to establish their business, to enter this competition. It’s not only about winning, but about unlimited global exposure to business opportunities,” he said.

Shana Kay, Managing Director of Infointeg, which received second runner up in the start-up category, agreed: “The competition gave us an opportunity to present our business plan, which was then scrutinised, by a panel of judges across industries. It helped us to see gaps that we may not have covered in great enough depth and provided a forum for an external view on our business. This was extremely useful. It has helped our business to gain credibility with our current investors and with potential investors.”

For further information on Cape Town Entrepreneurship Week, visit www.ctew.info, join the CTEW Facebook group, follow CTEW on Twitter ctew_week or e-mail activa@ctew.info

Issued by: Communication Department, City of Cape Town 05 OCTOBER 2010

Media enquiries: Thembinkosi Siganda, Director: Economic and Human Development, Tel: 021 483 9015 or Cell: 082 412 8019

Chris Vermeulen, CEO: Bandwidth Barn, Tel: 021 409 7000, Cell: 082 312 5065