SKHIRAT, Morocco, May 14, 2015 --- The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) honoured three winners of the 2015 edition of the Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) at a glittering ceremony hosted in Skhirat, Morocco. Lesley Erica Scott, the South African inventor of 'Smartspot TBcheck' was awarded the Special Prize for Social Impact, receiving a US$25 000 prize. The 'Smartspot TBcheck' is a device that provides a solution for measuring the accuracy of machines used in the diagnosis of tuberculosis.
The Innovation Prize for Africa is now in its 4th edition and this year's competition received 925 applications from 41 African countries. The top prize, Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) 2015 Grand Prize, went to Moroccan researcher Adnane Remmal, who scooped the top award along with a US$100 000 cash prize. His invention consists of an alternative patent for antibiotics intended for the cattle and poultry industry. It is a composition of natural phenolic molecules having antimicrobial properties (antibacterial, antiparasitic, antifungal).
Kenyan, Alex Mwaura Muriu won the Prize for the project demonstrating the greatest market potential. He is the creator of “Farm Capital Africa“, a financing model for agri-business, that encourages and facilitates investment, risk sharing and profit sharing in farming projects.
South African, Lesley Erica Scott, claimed the third prize for her Smartspot TBcheck project which was judged to have the greatest social impact.
About Lesley Erica Scott and TBcheck
Lesley Erica Scott is an Associate Professor at the University of Witwatersrand, Department of Molecular Medicine and Hematology in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Lesley's invention, the Smartspot TBcheck, examines the accuracy of machines used to detect TB. It is designed to assess whether these machines are functioning optimally. TBcheck is easy and safe to use and can be delivered to laboratories safely and economically. This will make diagnosing TB easier and might go a long way in curbing the TB epidemic in Africa. Tuberculosis is second only to HIV and AIDS as a cause of death in Africa.
About the Innovation Prize for Africa
The IPA is an initiative of the African Innovation Foundation (AIF) started in 2011. IPA honours and encourages innovative achievements that contribute toward developing new products, increasing efficiency or saving cost in Africa. The prize also promotes among young African men and women the pursuit of science, technology and engineering careers as well as business opportunities with potential of contributing to sustainable development in Africa. Specifically, the award targets technological breakthroughs in such main concern areas as manufacturing and service industry, health and well-being,agriculture and agribusiness, environment, energy and water and ICTs. To date, there have been three (3) rounds of competition.
By providing USD150,000 to winners who deliver market-oriented solutions for African-led development, the IPA acknowledges and encourages the endeavor of innovators and entrepreneurs and works to raise their profiles on the development agenda. IPA 2015 consisted of three prizes:
- USD 100,000 for the winner with the best innovation based on marketability, originality, scalability, social impact, scientific/technical aspect and clear business potentials
- USD 25,000 for the Second Prize with the best commercial/business potential and
- USD 25,000 for the Special Prize for Social Impact Innovation which awards the innovation with the highest social impact in the community/country.