CiTi sees enormous potential in biotechnology as a technology that is able to do good and make a positive impact on people’s lives. The African continent has experienced nascent activity in biotech, but not many of the ideas or products are coming to fruition in a commercial sense and from a perspective of being able to take it to market or to scale. BioCiTi, established by CiTi in 2019, is a specialised biotech incubator that provides African entrepreneurs with a platform where science, business and investment can come together.
Biotikum (Pty) Ltd, which is a BioCiTi incubatee, was founded in 2020 by Dr Neveling. It researches, develops and produces microbial additives for the agricultural industry to improve operations sustainably. Microbial additives for the agricultural industry, including host-specific animal probiotics, microbial silage inoculants, and soil inoculants. The use of microbial additives is an environmentally friendly means to promote sustainable farming practices and improve profitability. Biotikum is also aiming to provide large-scale microbial production services to various industries in Africa.
Much like any start-up in South Africa, there will always be challenges. Biotikum states that the biggest challenges they have faced are the issue of acquiring funding, getting access to infrastructure in the early start-up phase, and getting access to valuable business mentors. Furthermore, COVID-19 also presented some hurdles in navigating the industry as a start-up in South Africa.
Despite these challenges and issues, Biotikum has had some incredible highlights, which include receiving grant funding from the University Technology Fund and SEFA, participating in the Leaders in Innovation Fellowship program hosted by the Royal Academy of Engineering, and participating in the Brazil-South Africa cross-incubation program. They were selected as one of the top 10 start-ups from 140 companies from 14 countries during the Leaders in Innovation Fellowship pitching competition. Biotikum also won the Brazil-South Africa cross incubation pitching competition. Biotikum was also selected as a finalist for the Falling Walls Venture 2021 competition hosted by the Falling Walls Foundation.
“I draw inspiration from knowing that anything is possible in life and that perseverance and hard work makes one’s dreams of today become a reality tomorrow. No matter how big or daunting a task might be, breaking the task into smaller manageable ones makes deliverables easier to accomplish”
– Dr Neveling, Biotikum Founder.
When asked about the biotechnology industry in South Africa in the next 5 years, Dr Neveling states that “Over the past few years, the Biotech industry in South Africa has seen steady growth, we believe in the next 5 years the industry will grow even stronger giving birth to unicorn companies that will have a global impact”.
In parting, we asked what headline would accompany an article about Biotikum in 10 years from now, and it would read, “The microbial biotech company, Biotikum, leading the global microbial manufacturing industry”.
To learn more about Biotikum’s work or collaborate.
- Website: www.biotikum.com
- Facebook: @BiotikumSA
- LinkedIn: Biotikum (Pty) Ltd
- Twitter: @Biotikum_Pty”
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you in the biotechnology industry with an idea, concept, product or service that needs assistance to get to the market? Then you should apply to be a part of the next BioCiTi cohort.
The first five applicants will get a free hour session with a business coach irrespective of whether the business is selected for the programme!
Furthermore, there will be a draw where we will give one business free access to our labs and co-working space for a month! Make sure you get your applications in before the deadline.
Application deadline: 10 February 2022.
To read more and apply follow this link: https://bit.ly/BLC2022.