Ludwick Marishane is one of the most representative figures of South Africa’s innovative and entrepreneurial spirit. Ludwick, also known as the business scientist, invented DryBath®, a revolutionary water-saving solution, and is the driving force behind Headboy Industries, a disruptive product development and commercialization firm. His impressive foray into business ownership can serve as a model for other would-be entrepreneurs.
The Birth of Creativity
Even as a child, Ludwick showed remarkable business acumen. Before he graduated from high school, he had already begun his adventure into the inventing world. Ludwick earned an Honors degree in Business Science from the University of Cape Town, which also named him the world’s finest student entrepreneur. Ludwick continues, “When I was in college, I majored in entrepreneurship not because I wanted to start a firm of my own but because I wanted to gain a better understanding of how the corporate world functions. Nonetheless, as the inspiration for DryBath Gel struck, I couldn’t put it off any longer.
Reputational Track Record
His forward-thinking efforts were noticed. His inclusion in Google’s list of the “12 Brightest Young Minds in the World” occurred the same year. DryBath Gel, Ludwick’s revolutionary invention, brought him worldwide fame. Ludwick recalls the inspiration for his creation, saying, “When I first developed DryBath, the main goal was to help people in water-scarce communities.” Seeing how it has expanded into a global solution that helps not only the poor but also tourists, festival-goers, and even astronauts is a sobering reminder that inventions can have far-reaching consequences. Time magazine recognized him as one of the 30 people under 30 who are making the world a better place. After completing his degree in 2012, he was twice named one of the Top 30 under 30 Young African Entrepreneurs by Forbes Africa.
Quite the Speaker
Ludwick was the sole African and youngest speaker at the 2015 Accenture Innovation Conference, where he spoke to an audience of 1500 people about his experiences and insights. He has worked with many notable organizations over the years, including GIBS, UCT-GSB, Standard Bank, Absa, and many more.
Entrepreneur with many hats
Ludwick’s business activities are not limited to Headboy Industries. Since 2017, he has participated in the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers project as a member of the Johannesburg Hub. He co-founded an ed-tech firm with the lofty aim of halving university dropout rates over the next decade, and he was recently named one of the two global #DockersChallenges 2019 Entrepreneurs.
Deciphering the Entrepreneurial Code
Many people can take inspiration from Ludwick’s early success as an entrepreneur. His success can be attributed to his single-mindedness, tenacity, and resourcefulness. His early upbringing laid the groundwork for his success by instilling in him a lifelong curiosity for knowledge and a can-do attitude toward addressing problems.
DryBath, Ludwick’s invention, not only solved a widespread hygiene issue but also gave stores a new product category to stock. This breakthrough was motivated by his dogged search for a solution and his enthusiasm for a difficult task.
Ludwick offers sound advice for aspiring business owners based on his own experiences. He stresses the value of getting assistance, gaining financial literacy, and dividing one’s time between personal and professional obligations. Ludwick is a firm believer in the importance of always examining the status quo to see where and how it might be improved.
Entrepreneurship: The Best and Worst of Times
Ludwick represents a well-rounded individual in addition to his professional achievements. He thinks it’s important to take time away from work to pursue other interests with the same intensity and dedication. As a business owner, he struggles with the impact of emotions on decision-making while simultaneously placing a premium on rational analysis.
As a leading personality in South African business, Ludwick Marishane is always forging new paths. We can only guess what this forward-thinking businessman will do next as he studies French, mulls over where he would like to settle down, and dreams of one day building his mother a home.
To innovate and succeed in today’s competitive business environment can feel like a Herculean undertaking. But Ludwick Marishane, the respected MD of Headboy and creator of the DryBath® product has done just that, forever changing the face of business in South Africa and beyond.
Marishane’s narrative is not only a demonstration of his dogged perseverance and inventiveness but also a guiding light for aspiring business owners.
Unusual Steps Towards Business Ownership
Ludwick Marishane, a graduate of the University of Cape Town, took an unorthodox path to the top of the commercial world. While still in high school, he developed DryBath Gel, the first skin gel to serve as an alternative to taking a bath. What started as an emergency response is now leading the way in addressing widespread cleanliness problems around the world.
Marishane’s father was in human resources, thus he was exposed to the benefits of data-driven decision-making at an early age. He developed an unyielding commitment to finishing the DryBath project because of his early exposure to problem-solving approaches. Ludwick persisted despite being laughed at and lacking funding. Instead, he found meaning and satisfaction in the struggle, a perspective he currently shares with budding business owners.
Joy and Success: A Definition
Marishane’s entrepreneurial journey is a fascinating account of how he has united prosperity and contentment. While his early commercial inventions were motivated by the standard measure of success—financial success—his perspective eventually grew. He rethought success as doing what you love without worrying about money or food. His greatest satisfaction comes from overcoming obstacles, and DryBath was his first truly massive test. To which Ludwick adds, “I remember my first time speaking at the Accenture Innovation Conference. It was exciting, albeit nerve-wracking. When I was allowed to speak on the same stage as some of the world’s brightest minds, I discovered that we all strive for the same thing: to improve the world via innovation. That’s what’s kept me going all these years.
Finding Success as a Business Owner
Marishane’s success stems from his sharp eye for detail, analytical mind, and knack for coming up with workable solutions. The key elements of his entrepreneurial code include a passion for making a difference, a love of a good challenge, a concentration on data overviews, and a scientific approach to problem-solving. Because of his ideology, he helped start an education technology firm to reduce college dropout rates by half in the next decade.
Awards and Acknowledgement
It’s an honor to be named one of Google’s 30 Under 30 Worldwide and one of Forbes Africa’s Top 30 Under 30. For me, the bigger picture is the encouragement it gives to budding African businesspeople: “Your innovations can be world-class; don’t let your age or where you’re from hold you back.” Every success he’s had can be directly attributed to his hard work, originality, and extraordinary business sense. It’s incredible to watch how far a single concept can go when it’s protected and fostered with determination and fortitude. Detailed below is a summary of key events in Marishane’s professional life to date, showcasing the highlights of his thriving entrepreneurial trajectory.
Achievements and Honors:
- During his time in college, he received recognition as the top student entrepreneur in the world.
- Google’s “12 Brightest Young Minds in the World” list includes you.
- TIME magazine has recognized him as one of the “30 Under 30 Changing the World,” making him only the second African
- to get this honor.
- been featured as one of Forbes Africa’s “Top 30 Under 30 Young African Entrepreneurs” on two separate occasions.
Results and Influence:
- Created DryBath Gel, an innovative alternative to traditional baths that helps conserve water.
- Established Headboy Industries, a company that specializes in bringing innovative products to market.
- Participated in the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Johannesburg Hub as a member since 2017.
- I was the youngest speaker and the only African at the 2015 Accenture Innovation Conference, where I represented the
- African continent.
- Standard Bank, Absa, Discovery, Momentum, VWSA, Accenture, Sanlam, Primedia, Nando’s, and the 2016 Consumer
- Goods Forum Summit was among the clients who were kept interested.
- Intent on reducing the number of students who withdraw from college by half in the next decade, you co-founded an ed-tech firm.
- Select Entrepreneurs from Around the World to Participate in the 2019 #DockersChallenges.
- As we draw to a close on this remarkable story of Ludwick Marishane, we can take away a few key takeaways that could be a compass for budding business owners and innovators.
Accept hardship cheerfully and keep your sights set on your ultimate goal, rather than letting temporary setbacks derail you.
Instead of being reserved for specific contexts, critical thinking could serve as an everyday operating principle for everyone.
Knowledge of money matters is essential. The difference between success and failure often comes down to how well one manages their cash. These nuggets of advice are useful for anyone who is facing adversity in their career or personal life, not only aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators.
About The Author:
Lunga Dlamini is a journalist specializing in African start-ups and entrepreneurship. Lunga’s fascination with innovative business models and emerging market trends guides his writing. He has an MBA and has been with Africa Nova since its inception.