Consumption Information Real Time (CIRT), a successful leading-edge tech start-up, has been selected to join Cohort 5 of GSD Venture Studios. GSD Venture Studios is a leading global tech accelerator that focuses on identifying global technology companies with the potential to compete in global markets.
“GSD Venture Studios travels the world looking for companies with the potential to become the next tech giant or unicorn, so it’s an incredible privilege to have been selected as one of only 10 companies globally to participate in their fifth cohort,” says Ajay Lalu, co-founder of CIRT.
“When our Q-Hop solution was placed in the top 2 of the recent Africa Cup awards at the South African Innovation Summit, we realised that we needed to gain visibility in international markets to progress to the next level. We were selected for several accelerator programmes, but we chose to go with GSD Venture Studios because their focus on taking companies global aligned so well with our goals.”
Gary Fowler, CEO, President and Co-founder of GSD Venture Studios says he believes CIRT will become the next iconic company from South Africa.
“I’ve worked in tech for over thirty years, been a part of two unicorns and it is clear that CIRT will grow exponentially and change retail not only in Africa but around the world.”
CIRT’s Q-Hop technology was developed locally to reimagine the future of retail with data. Q-Hop is a contactless checkout solution using a scan-as-you-shop mobile application that scans barcodes and facilitates automatic payment using a variety of digital payment platforms, including PayPal, Zapper, SnapScan, Masterpass and crypto currencies, such as BitCoin.
At the back end, Q-Hop collects and analyses customer data in real time to enable smarter, on-the-fly decision-making aimed at maximising profits through personalised promotions and continuously improving the customer experience.
“We were hugely impressed by Q-Hop because unlike so many other start-ups it taps into multiple technology trends at once—Big Data, artificial intelligence, digital payments, digital marketing and Internet of Things. This gives it enormous potential in the global marketplace,” says Derek Distenfield, Co-Founder of GSD Venture Studios.
“In fact, I was so impressed with CIRT that we identified it as a potential unicorn that I decided to visit South Africa in search of more gems that are possible future unicorns.”
GSD Venture Studios was founded by Silicon Valley stalwarts Gary Fowler and Derek Distenfield. Mr Fowler has a successful track record as an entrepreneur and was recently named one of the “Top 10 Most Influential AI Executives” by Analytics Insight and one of the “Top Transformational Business Leaders of 2019” by IndustryWired Magazine.
He is also a contributing writer for Forbes. Mr Distenfield’s 15-year career in the start-up world has been similarly successful, including launching Cult Following, a growth marketing and brand-building agency, and acting as COO for 360 Payments, a $2-billion fintech. He is a member of the Forbes Business Council.
As part of Cohort 5, CIRT will participate in a customised 15-week intensive programme aimed at optimising its organisational structure and strategic direction, introducing it to US venture capital markets and then preparing it to enter global markets.
CIRT today announced a strategic alliance with Microsoft to provide the global IT firms’ clients with access to a stream of innovative IoT solutions.
CIRT is a black-owned and managed IoT data insights solutions provider.
The deal aims to further digital transformation in the region.
As part of this agreement, Microsoft will provide technical guidance, support and access to engineering resources, business development resources, and company solutions’ integration to Microsoft Azure.
In addition, once the migration has taken place and the solutions are commercial marketplace transactable, the organisation will provide the benefits available through its Commercial Marketplace and associated programmes for which the Company Solutions qualify.
In return, CIRT will integrate Q-Hop, Fridgeloc Solution, Vaccloc and Temploc Cold Supply Chain Monitor Solution with Azure IoT Central and other relevant Azure and Microsoft Power BI Services as well as complete onboarding of all solutions to Azure Marketplace.