Lumkani competes with global startups for $250k in public vote


South Africa fire detection startup Lumkani is going head-to-head with 15 other finalists in a public vote in Chivas Regal’s The Venture competition, competing for US$250,000 in funding.

Disrupt Africa reported in March Lumkani won the South African leg of Chivas Regal’s The Venture competition, walking away with US$50,000 and the opportunity to represent the country at the global competition in Silicon Valley.

The greater share of votes received on the The Venture website will increase Lumkani’s share of US$250,000 pledged by Chivas Regal towards the finalists’ crowdfunding campaigns. The competition ends in San Francisco in July when finalists pitch to a judging panel for the remaining share of the US$1 million fund.

Through its crowdfunding campaign, Lumkani is calling on people to buy one of its fire detection devices for a family living in a high fire risk community for US$15.

Some of the perks for backers include a Lumkani device for themselves, Lumkani beaded keyrings, carved wooden Lumkani flash drives, clear vinyl bumper stickers, and a Cape Town post card and electronic perk.

“Our large corporate perk gets their logo on our website for three months and we include their logo in the Lumkani device boxes, and a framed limited edition device – for a donation of US$1,500,” co-founder Emily Vining told Disrupt Africa.

“The mammoth perk for an individual is four nights at the Vineyard Hotel and flights for two to come to Cape Town and meet the community they have ‘blocked out’ with 1,000 devices – for a donation of US$15,000.”

The other finalists competing with Lumkani are MGov (Brazil), Arthesis (Bulgaria), Algramo (Chile), Coolpeds (China), Diseclar (Columbia), Conuco Solar (Dominican Republic), Dumyé (Gulf), Diamond Cab (Hong Kong), SenSprout (Japan), ¡Échale! a Tu Casa Mexico (Mexico), Socialgiver (Thailand), Two Fingers Brewing Co. (UK), Line 24 (Ukraine), and Vendedy (US).


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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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