Jason English: ”Without South Africa, CG Tech would not exist.”

Governments worldwide are stepping up and playing a crucial role in enabling innovation in their parts of the world. Our leaders can and should do as much as possible to help small businesses, start ups and innovators succeed. These entrepreneurs are the life blood of our future economy.South Africa has historically had the worlds eyes upon us for political strife and in turn fearing investment, yet underneath the shadows of the political challenges, is actually a country that was home to a variety of global leaders who built world class companies. Tesla, Space X, Paypal, Spar, Investec Bank,= Liberty Life, Sasol, BHP Billiton, Monster Energy, Pam Golding, De Beers, Atlantis, One & Only, Nandos are just some of the giant names spread across the globe. Trevor Noah, Black Coffee, and Charlize Theron are also names synonymous with global icon status and whilst many people around the world won’t necessarily associate South Africa with innovation or successful leaders, South Africa has a hidden innovation ecosystem very different to the rest of the world.

Where 1st world countries are innovating in AI, blockchain, robotics, autonomous transport and many more, South Africa finds its people innovating against basic needs. Electricity outages, access to funding, water quality, lack of infrastructure, crime and education have led to world class innovations in these spaces.

South Africa today has one of the best private insurance, private medical and private banking systems in the world. Mining innovation was born in South Africa and continues to grow and we were the first to produce a Coal to Liquids petrochemical plant. The world’s first heart transplant took place in Cape Town and economic solar power, computerised ticketing, speed gun sports technology, automatic pool cleaning, pratley putty, retinal cryosurgery, Q20 oil, aviation heads up display helmets, laser guided missiles and the Rooivelk helicopter are some technologies which were born in South Africa.

In 2014, I was lucky enough to meet Niall Carroll and Andrew Jackson who were best known for founding Royal Bafokeng Holdings, (another innovative community investment initiative) and it was in South Africa that we began the journey of building a global business with deep roots in South Africa. Today we have businesses in Ireland, London, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Norway and South Africa that are either run or managed by South African born leaders and innovators. Perhaps if our government changed the operating model to “if it is privately owned and controlled, it works”, and threw billions of rands into the business ecosystem to encourage more entrepreneurs to build global brands, the world might end up watching and noticing South Africa for a different reason. One that the mighty Nelson Mandela would be proud of today!


What our partners say about CG Tech

The collection of business within the CG Tech group allows us to share learnings and ideas with each other, sparking collective investments into research and development of new products and services which would not normally have been created.

Jason English | CEO at Al Laith

The technology arm of the CG Tech group, The Virtulab, has allowed me to grow the reputation of Prommac as a digital business in a traditional industry, and we have been able to transform at a fraction of the cost of outsourcing these services.

Dany De Barros | CEO at Prommac

As the youngest leader in the group, the collective knowledge of leadership has helped me grow personally by engaging with great business leaders who have been there, done that and have shared their experiences with me.

David Cummins | CEO at The Virtulab

The CG Tech team has helped us raise capital and fund growth using the know how and experience of the collective group. The spread of skill sets between Accountants, M&A Experts, Operational Specialists, Metallurgy Specialists has helped me shape my business for the future.

Max Corfield | CEO of Serious International