Home > About RC&I > Meet the team > Innovation Services
Meet the Team

Innovation Services

Dr Andrew Bailey
Senior Manager: Innovation

Andrew returned to his alma mater in 2007 to join RC&I, having worked at Mintek, AECI and the CSIR in a number of technology development and research management roles in the biomining, fermentation, bioprocessing and food fields. This often involved techno-economic feasibility studies, project management and the development of business plans for late-stage/pilot-scale research and development projects approaching commercialisation, as well as trouble-shooting for commercial operations. After completing a Programme in Financial Management, he also worked for the Dialogue Group which gave him valuable experience in sales and marketing, especially interacting with clients in the UK and USA in the financial services sector. Andrew has a PhD in Chemical Engineering from UCT and is a member of the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), the Licensing Executives Society (LES), and the Southern African Research and Innovation Managers Association (SARIMA).

Philip Hoekstra
Intellectual Property Manager

Philip joined RC&I in August 2013, having worked at Sans Fibres, Von Seidels Intellectual Property Attorneys, Optimal Energy and Frost & Sullivan. His particular experience includes the identification, screening and prosecution of patents and designs, patent searches, business consulting and market research. Philip has worked with inventions across a wide range of disciplines, including chemical, mechanical and electrical.

Philip has also been involved in benchmarking studies for clients at a number of well-known chemical companies in the areas of "blue sky" innovation, shared services and advanced materials innovation. He is particularly passionate about business and innovation in African countries and visited Nigeria in 2012 as part of a market research project.

Philip holds a Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering and has successfully completed the South African Patent Examination Board's Group 1 examinations, which included the subjects of Legal Framework for the Protection of Intellectual Property in SA, South African Patent and Design Law and Practice and Selected International Patent Laws. Philip has also completed the Southern African Research and Innovation Managers Association (SARIMA)'s first IP Commercialisation short course hosted by the Stellenbosch University in 2013. He is an Executive Committee member of SARIMA.

Saberi Marais
Technology Commercialisation Manager

Saberi Marais is a Technology Commercialisation Manager at UCT. He focusses on assisting UCT researchers and innovators to commercialise their research outputs to realise their intended impact University. His experience in programme development, innovation support and technology transfer has resulted in licenses and the creation and support of University spinout companies. His role focusses on the valorisation of the University’s intellectual property, securing funding for technology development, commercialisation and start-up. Through his work he has collaborated with tech and non-tech business incubators, Provincial and national government agencies and programmes, and businesses to assist local innovators to realise their goals.

Saberi was the Head of the Seed Fund Programme (where he oversaw the implementation, management and pipeline growth of the early stage technology-enabling Fund), Acting Executive for the Agency’s Innovation Enabling Division and a Regional Business Development Manager at the Technology Innovation Agency. Saberi was also the Business Development Manager at Innovus, Stellenbosch University; and a Technology Transfer Manager at the South African Medical Research Council. Saberi’s co-founded Science Café Cape Town, an initiative that promoted science communication and appreciation among the public. Saberi is a member of the Southern African Research and Innovation Management Association; where he also served as past vice President of the Technology Innovation portfolio and was an executive committee member.

Saberi completed his MBA degree at Stellenbosch University; and undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at UCT in Molecular and Cell Biology (cum laude). Saberi also completed the South African Patent Examination Board's Group 1 examinations. Saberi completed a number of SARIMA technology transfer and innovation courses; and later delivered these as part of the Association’s skills development initiatives.

Francois Oosthuizen
Technology Commercialisation Manager

Francois joined the RC&I team in March 2014, having worked at Tecmo Automation, Newcom Fluid Management and the NorthWest University CRCED. In this National IP Management Office (NIPMO)-funded post, Francois will rely on his expertise and experience to move projects through the innovation space so that ultimately IP emanating from UCT researcher can be successfully applied in industry / for the benefit of society. He will primarily be involved in the management of the UCT PreSeed Fund and UCT TIA Seed Fund and associated projects.

Francois has been involved in developing electronic control and data acquisition solutions for a number of years. This specific work gave him broad exposure to various industries and disciplines in the South African market. Evolving from Engineer into System Engineer and finally Technology Manager, Francois has gained “real world” insights and experience on deploying new IP in the South African and African market place.

Post graduate studies in engineering management and work done with international incubation companies has given Francois a passion for using technology to drive South Africa into the future. Using innovation and technology, living conditions in South Africa can dramatically be improved for lower income South African and Africans. It is this notion that makes Francois "tick".

Wasiu Afolabi
Principal Intellectual Property Officer

Wasiu Afolabi (“Afo”) joined the RC&I team in June 2018 with multidisciplinary training and experience. He started his career in the innovation and technology commercialisation sector as a beneficiary of the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) / British Council (SA) funded CHUMA Programme. He was an intern at the CPUT technology transfer office and later joined Savant technology incubator as a commercialisation practitioner.

Thereafter, he was seconded to Brian Bacon Inc. IP firm. Afo spent time in the Venture Capital industry working for Knife Capital where he acquired valuable experience in the art of venture funding and scaling for IP enabled technology-based businesses with good market fit. He was also part of the candidates that attended the TIA/British Council Professional Development and Engagement Knowledge Exchange Program in Wales, United Kingdom in 2017.

Afo has a technical background in Chemistry with a Bachelors and Masters’ degree, and he has just completed a PhD degree in Natural Products and Synthetic Organic Chemistry. He complemented his skills with Advanced Certificate Courses in Intellectual Property administered by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), and he attended the 2016 WIPO/NIPMO Advanced Summer School in Intellectual Property Management in Cape Town. He is currently an MBA candidate at the University of the People, Pasadena, California, United States.

At RC&I he will be involved in the identification of new protectable IP emanating from the university’s research, IP portfolio maintenance, its management and some associated commercialisation aspects.

Tshepang Khahlu
Senior IP Officer

Tshepang (Tshepi) joined RC&I in August 2018 after leaving her position as CHUMA Commercialisation Intern at the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA). Prior to joining TIA, she had experience in research in biotechnology and is currently completing her MSc Biotechnology at the University of Pretoria. After she joined the TIA CHUMA programme in 2017, she was seconded to the Technology Transfer Office of the Vaal University of Technology. Her training at the TTO focused in IP marketing, IP due diligence and compiling reports for the TIA Seed Fund.

Thereafter she was seconded to the IP firm Spoor & Fisher, where she gained skills in patent searching, patent prosecution and vetting patent specifications for conformity to South African law. In 2017, Tshepi attended the TIA/British Council Professional Development and Engagement Knowledge Exchange Program in Wales. This program gave insight on the best practices of Technology Transfer of academic institutions and businesses in Wales.

Tshepi is enrolled for a LLB degree at the University of South Africa. Her role at RC&I will be IP identification & screening, case Management, IP commercialisation and promotion.