Innovation –Kenyan entrepreneur Richard Turere is laughing all the to the bank after he bagged a cash prize of Sterling Pounds 20,000; an equivalent of sh 3 million.
The entrepreneur managed to beat two of his competitors under the innovation category in the contest orgainsed by European Potent Office EPO.
He was awarded for innovating Lion Lights which he claims scares away lions from attacking livestock having been raised in Kajiado, Kitengela where livestock rearing is a norm.
On the other hand, Filipa de Sousa Rocha (Portuguese), and third Fionn Ferreira (Ireland), candidates were awarded sh 1.5 million (€10 000) and sh 766,800 (€5 000) respectively.
Turere, who was among the shortlisted candidates in the 30 under 30 category, was regonised for his initiative and creativity as a young person from developing countries.
“The innovation shown by this year’s winners, in the face of the modern world’s many shared challenges, such as sustainability, the energy transition, and social inequality, is a source of inspiration. Through the European Inventor Award, the European Patent Office celebrates their work and the progress it represents,” stated EPO President António Campinos.
Defending his innovation, Turere who grew up up looking after the family cattle at nine years old, observed that he developed this idea after he learnt that lions always feared lights.
And to replicate this findings, he would first experiment with various materials which included LED lights, then place the light about 15 meters away from the cattle to help scare/trick the preying lions.
This success, saw him, in 2013, establish the Lion Lights organization, extending its distribution to other areas affected by frequent lion attacks.
At the age of only 13, Turere appeared on TED Talks to share his idea; what saw him win a scholarship at Brookhouse School.
And today, his invention is spreading very fast in Tanzania, Botswana, Namibia, Argentina, and India.
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