KwaZulu-Natal is set to have to have its own Silicon Valley by 2016
Thursday, November 20, 2014
In a landmark deal, Eureka Capital has signed a R 160 million-lease agreement with Dube TradePort Corporation to develop a 7 storey 21500m² building in the heart of Dube City, adjacent to King Shaka International Airport. This building will house a state-of-the-art innovation hub and an office block.
Ms Saxen van Coller, CEO, Dube TradePort Corporation, announced the deal by saying, “Eureka Capital is the first major private sector investor in our Dube City precinct; this landmark deal is a testament to Dube TradePort’s ability to attract investment into KwaZulu-Natal. We credit this success to our sustained efforts to develop Dube TradePort as a multi-modular logistics platform combining world-class infrastructure and exceptional service that culminates in an ideal environment for doing business.”
The innovation hub by Eureka Capital aims to accelerate the growth of knowledge-intensive enterprises, providing established businesses, as well as startups, with an incubation facility that brings together: academics, researchers, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists under one roof. Eureka Capital will be leveraging off over 17 years of international experience of its parent company, Eureka Finance, in investing in and developing a wide range of infrastructural projects and innovation hubs around the world. The organization has developed a proven model of operating such hubs in the Middle East, USA and China.
“The signing of this agreement marks a huge milestone for KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and Eureka Capital. Partnerships with investors from the Middle East, China, USA and Europe bring us some of the best technologies and skills required for economic development. As South Africans we are excited about this opportunity because it brings exactly what a developing economy needs, i.e. strategic focus on the development of emerging business in respect of skills, adoption and creation of new technologies. There are going to be many innovations coming out of the innovation hub, we are excited that we will be partnering with Dube TradePort and the Department of Economic Development to play a role in developing the economy of KwaZulu-Natal.” Stated Mr Thobani Msimang, CEO, Eureka Capital.
This innovation hub will be ideally situated in a technologically rich environment provided by Dube iConnect, which has covered the entire Dube TradePort precinct with the latest fiber optic technology and two Tier 3 Data Centers that provide local cloud computing services using the latest in virtualization software.
Mr Msimang continued to say, “We are building a technology hub; in South Africa we don’t have a place where entrepreneurs can incubate their ideas, where people with relevant industry experience, such as top executives from international companies, can come in and take those ideas to the next level, through a controlled developmental regime. We know that Dube TradePort is the right fit for this venture, as it has shown foresight in investing in some of the most advanced technology, we plan to add to this by bringing in the best in international expertise and technology to South Africa.”
But beyond being a tech savvy, creative and ambitious technology-related business campus, Eureka’s innovation hub will cut across a range of disciplines, including electronics, information and communication technology, bio-science, advanced manufacturing sectors, sustainable energy, infrastructure and community development projects throughout South Africa. The total investment will grow to R 250 million; when the innovation center is operational it will provide over 60 permanent jobs in addition to the estimated 650 jobs it will be creating during the construction phase. Construction is set to commence in March 2016.