David Gluckman

Director, Lumkani

“My business interests lie at the intersection of technology, sustainability and comfort. How can we create goods and services that are in demand, add significant value and are funded innovatively by the those who benefit directly or indirectly from the said goods and services?” asks David Gluckman.

Taking a break from the corporate world to pursue his other interests (among them, entrepreneurship) Gluckman joined a group of his colleagues who were working on the foundations of Lumkani, a technology company that builds fire detection systems for informal settlements.

“I believe that technology will be a continual driver of value for billions of people who live in resource constrained environments. In these markets, fundamentally different approaches supported by technology will be the order of the day to promote economic freedom.”

Gluckman believes that the local start-up scene needs to be spoken about and celebrated more.

“There are great start-ups here doing really great things, which should be advertised to create an awareness around it to inspire young people so that they can fulfill their dreams here on SA soil.”

With his entrepreneurial background and experience in business he was tasked to turn Lumkani into a social enterprise: one that is focused on both profit and social impact as an engine for growth and development.

When not working on Lumkani, Gluckman is interested in both film and space, and is continually inspired by Elon Musk. “He’s turned a traditionally excessive sector (space) into an efficient business (by reusing space shuttle parts). He has very large futuristic visions that he is determined to turn into a reality. If I am ever in a position to do so, I want to leave Earth’s atmosphere and look back at the ‘pale blue dot’ – little fascinates me more than the endlessness of the universe.”

For now, it looks like Lumkani has an extremely busy and important year ahead.

“We have been working at Lumkani for two years with a dedicated team and bootstrapping as far as we can, but still ensuring we build a product that suits our customers’ needs,” says Gluckman. “We’re testing an insurance model and social impact bonds which will see us moving out of our technology phase and focus on these innovative funding models, so we can see ourselves scale quickly across South Africa and the globe — that’s the plan.” — Tiana Cline



Twitter: @LumkaniFire Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Lumkani/ Linkedin: https://za.linkedin.com/in/davidjgluckman Website: www.lumkani.com