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2nd Annual SAB Foundation Innovation Awards call for entries

9 July 2012

.combining entrepreneurship and innovation is key to SA job creation.- Cyril Ramaphosa, Chairperson SAB Foundation

JOHANNESBURG. 9 July 2012. The South African Breweries (SAB) Foundation is on the look-out for some of the country's most innovative products and processes, which are aimed at improving the lives of people, specifically women, youth, people living with disabilities and people living in rural areas.

The Innovation Awards was launched in 2011 and is part of the SAB Foundation's primary focus to ignite a culture of entrepreneurship in South Africa as a source of economic growth, job creation and innovation.

"Developing entrepreneurship is the key to job creation in South Africa. If we are able to combine entrepreneurship with the spirit of innovation, I believe that we have an amazing opportunity to take our job creation expectations to another level. This is also aligned to what our country sorely needs," says Cyril Ramaphosa, Chairperson SAB Foundation.

The Innovation Awards offers a first place grant of R1-million and two runner-up grants of R500 000 each. In addition, several seed grants are awarded to deserving innovations and a separate category is for entries from women, youth, people with disabilities and people living in rural areas.

Grants include funding for the upscaling and commercialisation of the innovative solution, a process supported by the Foundation over a period of two years or longer, as needed. The size of the grants is designed to allow for substantive progress to be made by the winners.

Product innovations cover goods and services which can be divided into new or improved. A new product may use advanced technology and knowledge or a combination of these. An improved product already exists and its performance has increased significantly.

Process innovations involve adapting and creatively improving ways of delivering a product or service, this could come from changes in knowledge, perception and understanding.

An open competition puts innovator applicants and their innovation through a rigorous, phased adjudication process. In the end, investments are made in those innovations which are innovative, scalable and can be commercialised. Innovated solutions entered must have progressed past an idea and be at proof-of-concept stage.

The winner of the inaugural SAB Foundation Innovation Awards 2011 was Reel Gardening, whose community gardening product, Garden in a Box received a grant of R1 million. Since then, the innovation has been implemented in 15 schools and communities and has benefited more than 2000 people. Around 1500 square metres has been planted with the capacity to provide at least 1200 meals a day. More than 600 learners and educators have been trained in sustainable development and plans are in place to employ more staff as the demand for community and school gardening increases. At the same time, the Garden in a Box design is being refined and improved.

Reel Gardening is owned by 25 year-old Claire Reid, who created a handmade vegetable planting strip made from biodegradable paper. Each vegetable strip is water soluble, contains fertiliser and non-modified seeds and includes a set of seed growing factors to maximise the germination rate.

How to enter:

Entries for the Innovation Awards 2012 are welcomed from (but not limited to) individual innovators, entrepreneurs, NGOs, corporate foundations, Corporate Social Investment professionals, consulting firms and university departments. The closing date for entries is Friday, 20th July 2012 and should be directed to; delivered to SAB Central Office, 65 Park Lane, Sandton c/o Mariska Henning or couriered to SAB Foundation, 65 Park Lane, Sandton, 2146 c/o Mariska Henning.


The SAB Foundation was founded in 2009 as a beneficiary of SAB's broad based black economic empowerment deal, SAB Zenzele and holds 8.4 million shares. Dividend income received from Zenzele is used for investments in initiatives which benefit the wider community.

The Foundation is overseen by a board of trustees which include respected South African businessmen and women. It is chaired by SA businessman, Cyril Ramaphosa, whose passion for young entrepreneurs is widely acknowledged.

The long-term vision underpinning the SAB Foundation's programmes is to ignite a culture of entrepreneurship in South Africa as a source of economic growth, job creation and innovation.

Research conduction into entrepreneurship highlighted three critical points:

- SA lacks a critical mass of SMEs,
- SA has only a few high-profile entrepreneurial role models; and
- The country's culture of innovation is largely untapped and un-commercialised.

To address these challenges, the SAB Foundation aims to contribute to the development of entrepreneurship by supporting the growth of a critical mass of SMEs; developing entrepreneurial role models; and stimulating and rewarding innovation.

Other than the Innovation Prize, the SAB Foundations aim to achieve its objective through the following investment initiatives:

Tholoana Fund - offers small-scale grassroots support for non-profits, co-operative, micro-business and other ventures investing in entrepreneurial development and provide income generation and employment. The focus of the fund is rural, women-owned and youth-owned enterprises.

Grant capital investment - offers support and financial assistance to high-impact, black-owned businesses in partnership with Endeavour, a non-profit organisation dedicated to transforming emerging markets by establishing high impact entrepreneurship as a leading force for sustainable economic development.

For further information, please contact:

Robyn Chalmers

Head of Media and Communications, SAB

Tel: 011 881 8679


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This is a SABMiller subsidiary news release, it was first published in its local market on [09/07/2012].

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