Johannesburg, March 2018: Epitome Consulting, civil engineering and project management service provider, is behind its founder, Clement Mokoene, who, following his Chivas Venture SA 2018 win, is gearing up for the global final in May.
The Chivas Venture is a global initiative that provides a $1 million fund for social entrepreneurs that are tackling the world’s biggest problems. 27 regional finalists are selected by country based on their entries. The requirements are stringent and all innovations need to be commercially viable in the market. Clement’s Vehicle Energy Harvesting System (VEHS) won the South African round and he will now join social entrepreneurs from around the world to pitch his ground breaking idea for a share of $1 million in funding. The Chivas Venture Global Final takes place in Amsterdam this May.
With the development of the VEHS technology, Clement has been actively changing the way that energy is approached – from a scientific and sustainability point of view. His concept is simple – harness the missing link in the transfer of energy and convert it to create a new source of electricity.
His idea was inspired by the pressure exerted onto the tarmac by the weight of a plane through its wheels when landing. He sought to find a way to harness the energy generated by that pressure in the same way that coal is burned to create pressure to the power turbines that provide us with electricity. The VEHS takes this principle and applies it to cars. The system is fitted below the road surface, with the cars driving over it creating the pressure that powers a turbine. A two kilometre stretch of highway fitted with the system could power an entire city.
Clement has spent several years developing and testing the system and believes that it is now ready to be rolled out and utilised in the real world. This rollout could happen rapidly because unlike more traditional energy infrastructure that takes years to construct, the VEHS infrastructure can be fully installed and operational within 6 months.
“Everyone at Epitome has put their full support behind Clement,” says Epitome CEO, Joey Mokoene. “His entering a competition such as the Chivas Venture makes perfect sense as Epitome has always held our people, the people around us and the world we live in as our number one priority. Our motto is ‘development through innovation’ and Clement’s VEHS is the embodiment of this philosophy.”
As a husband and wife team, Joey and Clement Mokene have grown Epitome Consulting into a highly successful firm, offering extensive civil engineering and water delivery services in both the public and private sectors. Epitome’s primary offering is in six key service areas, which include water and sanitation engineering, water conservation and demand management, roads and storm water management, civil and structural engineering solutions, project and programme management and developing emerging SMME’s.
The secret to their success, Joey says, is in their approach. “What makes us different is the fact that we strive for more than just having a profitable business. We want to make our world a better place to live in, and we believe in using technology to do that,” she explains.
“It’s an honour to be recognized by The Chivas Venture awards and its accomplished panel of judges,” says Clement. “When I first started my career, ‘innovation’ was just a word we used to describe technology. The Chivas Venture has changed this into a way of describing a complete shift of entire industries. It’s humbling to be a part of something of this magnitude that making a real change to the world around us. It’s also inspiring to see the inventions being forward by my fellow competition entrants.”
“What I want people to take away from my entry and success so far in this competition is that is a testament to Epitome Consulting’s on-going commitment to rethinking efficiency, sustainability, humanity and the transformation of business practices in South Africa,” Clement concludes.