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In what is a testament to the degree of potential impact it could make, Mozambican startup BioMec was awarded the second most innovative startup in africa award by ClimateLaunchpad for its solution that helps amputee live a better life through the construction of cheap and eco friendly prosthesis from oceans sourced plastics.

According to Lionessesofafrica,“BioMec produces high performance prosthesis based on plastic collected from the oceans, aimed to increase access to artificial limbs at reasonable prices, using a technology that increases compatibility between the residual limb and prosthesis creating comfort and consuming 90% less time, while recycling plastic wastes in the ocean.”

The company which was started by Marta Vânia Uetela said this of itself:“We improve people’s lives so they can feel and experience things that would otherwise be challenging without a well designed prosthesis, giving them confidence and productivity. “ Its founder is said to have been motivated to find a solution to the amputation problem of many Mozambicans because of an incident that happened to a friend.

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Speaking on her motive to start BioMec, Marta stated that “After a very close friend suffered an accident, he had a really hard time accessing a prosthesis. After some research we realized that 90% of amputees in Mozambique do not have access to prostheses, either because of the high prices, time taken to obtain them, or even access to health care…Using the plastic residuals from only 6 bottles or 250g of fish net discarded in the ocean we can build a prosthesis for someone who has suffered an amputation below the knee.”

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In a world where unfortunate mishaps and unimaginable incidents can happen to anyone at any time; whether at work, home or on the road, it can at least provide a little comfort to know that when those incident do happen, there is  a way to salvage the best possible outcome from them through a startup like BioMec.   

BioMec which was founded in 2020 and was one of the mozambican startup who competed regionally for a chance to  represent the country at the global seedstar startup acceleration program for a chance to win $500,000 in funding and lost, but was recognised as the top 2 best innovative startups in Africa in last year’s ClimateLaunchpad competition. The world’s biggest competition for startups with environmental and ecological orientation.

The competition said this of itself on its website “Our competition is your ticket to global success. Provided you have a green business idea and have what it takes to become an entrepreneur.

Your idea can be an innovation in renewable energy, a sustainable transition in the food chain, a mind shift in urban mobility or any other way to tackle climate change.” 

The environmental impact startup competition applied to by BioMec and hundreds of other startups in the last year seeks innovative  ideas that help to tackle climate change problems and reduce its impact further. 

Speaking further in an interview with The Young African Leaders Initiative, BioMec’s founder who was an engineering and design student and a certified welder, says her organisation has both a business and ecological commitment and In the next 3 years plans to reuse 20% of plastic residuals from Costa do Sol, one of Mozambique’s most polluted beaches.

She also noted that her company builds prosthesis within 24 hours compared to the conventional process which takes more than 1000 hours and has the capacity to produce 20 prostheses in a month with its current team of five.  

Marta who also took part in the Young african Leaders Initiative Regional Learning Center training where, according to her, she gained access to tools and resources which helped her develop and refine her business ideas can be considered one of africa’s leading thinker-founder whose first startup of shipping container homes was an alternate solution to her country’s housing problem. It is only a matter of time till BioMec expands and starts to make the enormous impact its founder dreams of making but there is no doubt that this game changing startup has more than enough backing from the hundreds of thousands of African amputees who will want to benefit from its prosthesis solution.

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