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Nneile Nkholise is a young entrepreneur in South Africa. She started with iMED Tech Group in 2015 while studying her master's degree in mechanical engineering at the Central University of Technology. This company provides innovative medical solutions that impact on health care throughout the continent. Nkholise has experience in 3D printing applications in the medical field.
Convinced that iMed Tech was strong enough to adopt her as a full-time entrepreneur, she left her job from 9 to 5 in 2016.
To reduce costs, Nkholise outsourced the manufacture of accurate models to larger companies with biocompatible materials and industrial printers. She currently employs five freelancer who live in South Africa, Canada, Botswana, and the United Kingdom, as well as a local vendor.
"Coming from a technology background, my biggest hurdle was transitioning into an entrepreneur. The finance jargon used to torment me," she said, adding that her most recent challenge is making cold calls to customers.
As one of the few women in the industry, Nkholise says that she did not have anyone as a reference in business. "By starting iMed Tech, I wanted to create a hypothesis which says that women have the power and potential to run businesses within the medical technology sector. And not just ordinary businesses, but ones that will go on to become global conglomerates, " she explained.
Now she recently started with 3dimo, focused on the detection of sports injuries, prevention, and rehabilitation. She creates digital models for athletes that are analyzed and observes what happens when athletes train to predict injuries.
Nkholise is a member of an elite group of entrepreneurs who guide emerging companies to unleash the full potential of African people. She also won the SAB Foundation for Social Innovation Award. Also, the World Economic Forum has recognized her as one of the most influential African innovators and was chosen among the 100 entrepreneurs selected in the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit.
Nkholise's accomplishments gave her recognition at Forbes Africa on her 30-under 30 technology list, where she placed 13th, placing her as the top woman on the list. She understands the impact she can achieve, so she helps with resources in a South African organization to develop STEM and entrepreneurial skills in girls.