The SA Innovation Summit 2017 Competitions had a great turn out with exceptional inventors, founders, industry experts and analysts all contributing towards the continued entrepreneurial development of South Africa.
Shana Derman of Intellicred lets us in on her entrepreneurial journey and her experience in taking part in the 2017 Chivas Venture Pitching Den.
What is Intellicred?
You know how easy it is to copy a logo from the web? What we do is protect company logos from being used illegally and this leads to reduced online fraud, online impersonation and fake goods. We also have an automated scanning tool that monitors the web scanning for infringements or illegal use of your logo or brand.
What impact will your product have?
We help companies protect their revenue, protect their brands against online brand abuse and show in a visible way that you are who you say you are online or that you are authorized to be associated to the brands you display on your website.
What has participating in the Chivas Venture Pitching Den meant for your business your business?
Participating in the Chivas Venture Pitching Den was a good way of gauging need, receiving feedback and finding out where our gaps are. It also introduced us to some incredibly talented entrepreneurs I may not have engaged with yet.
What challenges where you faced with while building your product?
Product development is an iterative process, however, in our first iteration, a global corporation developed a competing product and we were just too slow to market. With the new range of products, we have ensured that we entered market a lot sooner.
What advice would you give to entrepreneurs or those looking to start their own business?
Research is sooo important. Most ideas are not new or novel, however, this does not mean you cannot add the latest twist to solve new-age problems. Ensure that there is a problem to solve and that there is a market for it. Use free resources to start, where possible such as free hosting with Microsoft BizSpark, IBM developerWorks or AWS Free Tier and build a prototype if you can. If you are not technical, find a technical partner who can help you with the process and grow with you. Don’t rely on funding, build relationships and grow sales. This makes your business more attractive when you do need to raise funding.