CrashDetech is Chivas Regal’s The Venture Year Two South African winner. Announced at an exclusive red carpet event in Johannesburg on Thursday evening, Jaco Gerrits, Founder and CEO of CrashDetech will be making his way to the global finale of the social entrepreneurship competition in New York, where he will be one of 25 finalists who will present their final pitches for a chance to win a share of $1 million.
CrashDetech is a smartphone application, which automatically detects a serious car crash, pinpoints the location, immediately dispatches the nearest ambulance and supplies paramedics with lifesaving information.
Gerrits received this honour from Chivas Regal’s Head of Marketing, Sibusiso Shangase, and Ravi Naidoo, founder and Managing Director of Design Indaba.
“CrashDetech is an incredible creation that has the potential to save lives by reducing emergency response times by pinpointing a vehicle crash location in these potentially fatal incidences. We are confident that this innovative enterprise will represent South Africa exceptionally well in the global round of The Venture competition in the coming months,” said Shangase.
The Venture is Chivas Regal’s global search to find and support the most promising aspiring social entrepreneurs who want to succeed whilst making a positive impact on the lives of others. With over $1 million in funding and resources, The Venture will enable social entrepreneurs from around the world to realise their potential and gain exposure for their business.
CrashDetech’s win was not easy, having faced tight competition from four other local innovative start-ups; I’m Not Plastic (INP), Mama Mimi’s, Safe and Sound and Connectmed.
“Year two of The Venture was a great success. We saw a substantial increase in entrees submitted and the quality was magnificent. We wish the other contenders all the best in their ventures. We believe that the mentoring we provided for their final pitches assisted in improving their business proposals and hopefully they earned new knowledge on how to better it,” said Shangase.
Chivas Regal South Africa didn’t walk this route alone in deciding the winner; they acquired the help of established and recognised South African business experts and the judging process was moderated by Consilium Consulting Group, South Africa.
The Chivas Regal judging panel included Group Chairman of GEM Group, Lebo Gunguluza; Executive Creative Director at Joe Public, Xolisa Dyeshana; CEO and President of Ditshego Media, Tebogo Ditshego; Director of the Centre for Entrepreneurship at Wits Business School, Chimene Chetty; and media personality and founder of Fix Scholarship, Fikile “Fix” Moeti.
Following the success of last year’s competition which saw over 1000 start-ups apply, Chivas Regal launched the second year of its search to support the most exciting social entrepreneurs around the world in the second half of 2015.
Last year’s competition awarded businesses tackling diverse social and environmental issues. The local winner in the inaugural launch of the campaign was Lumkani Fire Detection which went on to make top five in the global leg of the competition.
Launched in October 2014, the first year of The Venture saw 16 counties participate. This year’s competition welcomed entries from over 25 countries including Poland, Panama and Nigeria.
Only the most promising start-up from each country will be selected to become a global finalist and take part in The Venture’s Accelerator Week in the United Kingdom, where they will receive training and business advice, as well as mentoring from some of the biggest and most influential names in business. What’s more, each finalist will receive global exposure for their start-up before travelling to New York City for the finale.
CrashDetech: With an average of 47 road fatalities per day, South Africa is one of the world’s most dangerous countries in which to drive. Time is the major factor in case of emergencies and delays in receiving appropriate medical attention often turns out to be fatal. CrashDetech is a smartphone application that runs silently in the background of your phone. It automatically detects serious vehicle crashes and reduces emergency response times by pinpointing the crash location. It also ensures the provision of appropriate medical attention by supplying vital patient information. “We’ll know when you need us”.
For more information on the journey of the global finalists and year one alumni visit www.theventure.com