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Commercialising Africa's most inspiring deep tech originating from its leading universities. 
* Ignite is free for Stellenbosch University technology transfer, students and alumni. Spaces limited. 

We offer expert advice and experience to ensure university research creates positive impact across Africa. 

Our 4-month business builder program offers the following:

  • Gap analysis to determine the most pressing needs of the startup and define key deliverables 

  • 1:1 mentoring with a world class expert selected to meet the specific needs of each company

  • Support of the Business Builder team to address and own critical work streams  

  • Access to curriculum, templates and case studies via an online learning platform as requested

  • Free access to a hot desks in our inspiring co-working space for startups located in the Western Cape, SA 

  • $25,000 Amazon credits and access to various technical services 

  • Opportunity to hire the SU LaunchLab team for fundraising or hiring at an additional negotiated fee

We're focused on tangible outcomes

Startups don't need talk; they need results to be successful.

Ignite executes on defined deliverables to drive growth.


We analyse your business based on its stage of maturity to determine its key needs. We work with the team to prioritise those needs based on experience. We then go out to execute on those needs together.


The analysis serves as the foundation for our business building support.

Professional Pitch Deck & Training 

A pitch deck is the ideal format to clearly articulate the key aspects of the customer problem, business model, team and milestones.


Every startup will be pitch perfect through training and employing data driven story telling.   

Expert-Led Deliverables

We utilise our robust network of seasoned, experienced experts to help our teams make creative mistakes.

Our Experts work directly with teams with a clear deliverable as determined through the Diagnostic Report. 


University Technology Fund Partnership

The UTF is a venture fund specifically focused on commercialising technology, intellectual property, and research originating from South African Universities. 


The UTF bridges the gap between technology ideation, research, and intellectual property development and the commercialisation thereof. It aims to catalyse and commercialise the technology transfer industry in South Africa for the benefit of all South Africans.

SU LaunchLab is the Preferred Partner of the UTF for its pre-seed, seed, series seed and series A investments.

Ignite Business Builder

Gap Analysis

1 month

A deep dive to assess current state of affairs and offer strategic insights 

Key items analysed: 

  • Vision, mission, value proposition

  • Burn, runway, performance 

  • Business model, pricing, economics

Co-Building Program

3 months

Online learning content.

Business builder sessions with a  curated advisor every other week

Monthly cohort sessions addressing critical needs 

Professional pitch deck

and training 

Applications are always open. 


Business Builder Team 

Startups are the key to economic and social growth in Africa. 

Our team of experienced, mission driven individuals are making this their life's work. Nothing is more important. 

We roll up our sleeves to create, iterate, build, empathise and celebrate with our teams. 


Joshua Romisher, CFA 

CEO, Stellenbosch University LaunchLab 

Reformed investment banker with extensive startup experience across USA, Europe & Africa. Responsible for over $250+M USD of funds raised for African climate tech startups. Dedicated to leaving a healthy planet for his two beautiful children. 

Nolan van Heerden

Ignite Advisor 

Startup expert that grew a successful startup from an attic with two university buddies to participant in Grindstone, international acquisition and scale across Africa. Personal passion for building  great engineering teams and enabling them to exceed their dreams.

Daniel Maloba

Early Stage Business Builder Lead 

Stellenbosch University engineer with the hustle that comes from being born in the DRC. Passion for early stage business building with deep experience assisting student entrepreneurs turn their ideas into viable commercial ventures. Former child radio star helping others become pitch perfect. 

Ready to build?

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