Craig Ross, innovations manager at Cape Town-based Reconstructed Labs (RLabs). Image by HumanIPO.
Entrepreneurs must seek to ensure their product sells a solution to a problem, in order to achieve success in business, according to Craig Ross, innovations manager at the Reconstructed Living Lab (RLabs).
Speaking at the Entrepreneurs Incubator Hub at AfricaCom in Cape Town on Tuesday, Ross described his journey into the entrepreneurial world, saying it taught him that the key to business is to solve a problem.
“It doesn’t matter what product you have, you need to add value. You need to sell a solution and fix a problem,” Ross said.
“I sold drugs, that was the first step in my entrepreneurial journey,” he said, explaining how he embarked on his journey into becoming a tech entrepreneur.
“I mean it. I sold something, I made money. I was an entrepreneur.”
This journey also took Ross through an experience-based learning curve into marketing.
“I couldn’t use normal advertising, like posters, Facebook, and so on. So I advertised by spreading the word through my customers. We all know about marketing,” Ross said.
Through this journey, Ross learnt through his business model that regardless of the nature of a product, it needs to provide a solution and fix a difficulty.
“We understood that there’s many other people out there who are trapped, people who want to come out of drug abuse and gangsterism, so we created Jamiix,” Ross said.
Jamiix is a tool which allows for social media conversations to be transferred to other users anywhere in the world.
People in trouble contacting Ross and his team at RLabs would be transferred through Jamiix to the most appropriate person to deal with their issues in the most expert way.
“We understood there was a problem and we created a solution,” Ross said. “This was all by the people for the people… by drug addicts.”