On 25 October 2017, Endeavor selected 25 entrepreneurs leading 16 companies from 11 countries at the 75th International Selection Panel (ISP) held 23 to 25 October 2017 in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Dr Jacobus “Lieb” Liebenberg from ITSI was selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur. ITSI launched in 2012 as a first to market in South Africa with an agnostic, fragmentation-free, 21st century solution to eLearning. ITSI remains the market leader, with 184 schools, 74 000 students and more than 4 500 teachers using the solution since 2017. Dr Liebenberg, the founder of ITSI, recently travelled to Sofia, Bulgaria, to partake in Endeavor’s 75th ISP. Arriving back home as an Endeavor Entrepreneur, he was asked a few questions about his experience.
Endeavor South Africa (ESA): How did you find out about Endeavor?
Lieb Liebenberg (LL): Through the FNB Innovation Awards.
ESA: Comment on your journey leading up to the ISP.
LL: Overall it was a great experience. I was amazed at the willingness of Endeavor Entrepreneurs to provide me with their time and expertise in preparing for the ISP.
ESA: What other value have you received from Endeavor in the process, and how did it equip you for the ISP?
LL: My local Endeavor representative, Lauren du Toit, played an immense role in helping me prepare for the ISP. She basically acted as my personal Endeavor-related PA, setting up appointments, suggesting who to meet, and then keeping detailed notes and minutes of meetings which I could then use later when preparing for the ISP.
ESA: Comment on your experience of the ISP, and the value you received.
LL: The ISP itself was an interesting and enriching experience. The overall organisation of the event was great and the three selection panels each was a unique interaction with great business people who provided different insights and views on the state of the ITSI business and its prospects going forward. In addition to that, the ISP already served as a great platform to link up with other entrepreneurs and I will be pursuing some possible new business connections which stem directly from there. Overall a fantastic event.
ESA: Why are you proud to be an Endeavor Entrepreneur?
LL: I think I am proud to be an Endeavor Entrepreneur because I love the values that Endeavor represents. On the one hand it is about achieving excellence and growing a world class business and that one is recognised by other entrepreneurs for what you have achieved. However, even more important for me is the values around helping other entrepreneurs grow their businesses in order to create more jobs and have a positive impact on the world.
ESA: What are you most looking forward to on your Endeavor journey?
LL: Being an active participant in the network and contributing (even if [is] in a small way) towards other entrepreneurs.
ESA: What’s in store for ITSI for the next five years?
LL: In the next five years ITSI will establish itself as a truly international AI-driven EdTech business with more than one million daily users experiencing life-changing education.
ESA: Do you have any sound advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
LL: Growing your business is not so much about speed as it is about how much value you can add to your customers.
ESA: On a personal note, what is your motto?
LL: We cannot determine the talents we receive, but we can control what we do with them.
For more information about ITSI, visit www.it.si