A Nigerian, Ifediora Ugochukwu has worn £10,000 for developing iMeter, an intelligent metering system that gives Nigerian users transparency and control over their electricity supply.
Through their participation in the Africa Prize, Ifediora Ugochukwu and other African participants including a 24-year-old Brian Gitta from Uganda who also worn £25,000, have been approached by international researchers offering support and are currently writing up their ground-breaking findings into an academic paper, to be published within the next few months.
“We are very proud of this year’s winner. It’s a perfect example of how engineering can unlock development – in this case by improving healthcare,” said Rebecca Enonchong, Africa Prize judge.
Sixteen shortlisted Africa Prize entrants, from seven countries in sub-Saharan Africa including Nigeria, received six months training and mentoring during which they learned to develop business plans and market their innovations. The group received coaching on communicating effectively, focusing on customers and approaching investors with confidence.
The Africa Prize provides a unique package of support, including funding, comprehensive business training, bespoke mentoring and access to the Royal Academy of Engineering’s network of high profile, experienced engineers and experts, and their networks.
It helps turn engineers with incredible ideas into successful entrepreneurs.
Launched in 2014, the Prize aims to stimulate, celebrate and reward engineers who have developed innovations that will benefit Africans.
The fifth Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation is now open for applications. Individuals and small teams living and working in sub-Saharan Africa, and who have an engineering innovation, are invited to enter. Potential entrants can find more information here. The deadline for entries is 23 July 2018.
The Africa Prize is grateful to The Shell Centenary Scholarship Fund, a founding sponsor of the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation.
The other 12 candidates on the 2018 Africa Prize shortlist:
- Alvin Kabwama from Uganda with UriSAF Maternal and Sexual Reproductive Health Care Kit, which tests urine quickly, accurately and affordably
- Arthur Woniala from Uganda with Khainza Energy Gas, a cheap biogas made from manure and safe for household use
- Brian Mwiti Mwenda from Kenya with The Sixth Sense, a handheld echolocation device with ultrasonic sensors that alert visually impaired users to objects nearby
- Daniel Taylor from Ghana with HWESOMAME, a low-cost smart sensor that accurately detects soil conditions and notifies farmers via text or phone call
- Emeka Nwachinemere from Nigeria with Kitovu, an online platform that helps farmers in remote locations to increase crop yields and sell their produce
- Esther Gacicio from Kenya with eLearning Solutions, an interactive online programme that hosts courses for individuals or serves as a tool for training institutions
- Lawrence Okettayot from Uganda with Sparky Dryer, a low-tech dehydrator that dries fruit and vegetables to extend their shelf life and reduce food wastage
- Monicah Mumbi Wambugu from Kenya with Loanbee, a mobile phone application that calculates the user’s credit scores and grants micro-loans
- Nges Njungle from Cameroon with Muzikol, an online music marketing and social media app designed to meet all the career needs of musicians
- Nnaemeka Chidiebere Ikegwuono from Nigeria with ColdHubs, solar-powered walk-in cold rooms that extend the life of perishable food tenfold
- Peter Kariuki from Rwanda with SafeMotos, an app that connects commuters to the safest motorcycle drivers in Kigali, Rwanda
- Shalton Mphodisa Mothwa from South Africa with AEON Power Bag, which allows users to charge their phones on the go by converting radio waves and solar energy into power.