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eyeSlices: Kerryne Krause-Neufeldt

Locally developed eye pad treatment takes global market by storm

Juliet Pitman



Kerryn Krause of eyeSlices

When Kerryne Krause-Neufeldt first had an idea to market a cosmetic eye treatment pad product, she had no idea she would have to add ‘technologist’ and ‘scientist’ to her title of ‘entrepreneur’ before she could enjoy success. The 32-year-old is the mastermind behind eyeSlices, an innovative hydro-gel polymer eye treatment product that uses cryo-technology to encapsulate the properties of various active ingredients in a gel pad. The reusable pad is placed on the eyes and slowly releases the active ingredients into the eye area, combating a range of cosmetic eye problems. Initially launched in beauty salons, eyeSlices are unique in the world and have taken local and international markets by storm.

The story of their eventual delivery to market is one of perseverance, faith and tenacity. The idea was first sparked when Krause-Neufeldt came across a sample of an Italian fabric eye mask that was impregnated with various ingredients. “I wanted to import it and market it in South Africa, but the product was a bit gimmicky, dried out too quickly and didn’t deliver what it said it would,” she recalls. After three years of experience as a national wholesale distributor for an oxygen cosmetic cream, Krause-Neufeldt decided that the time had come to develop her own product and find distributors throughout the country and the world who would market it for her.“What I did know was that I wanted to create something that delivered results – I wanted technology behind the product,” she says. At a chance meeting with an aloe vera product manufacturer, Krause-Neufeldt described what she wanted to create. “About two weeks later he came back to me and told me he’d found my technology and that it was sitting on a shelf in the CSIR,” she recalls. The technology her contact was referring to was a water-soluble polymer gel, as Krause-Neufeldt explains: “It was basically a carrier or what they called a dermal delivery system.”

But the technology had a long way to go before it became a marketable product. “I thought I’d just get someone else to create the product and that I’d then market it globally but this is not how it happened,” she recalls. The product she envisaged was so unique that there was no standard manufacturing technique to make it, either locally or globally, and the scientists who had originally developed the technology had long since left the country. Unperturbed, Krause-Neufeldt set about becoming a scientist. “We turned a room in our property into a laboratory, cooked up the polymer in our slow cooker, purchased some second-hand freezers and conducted experiment after experiment on hundreds of different freeze/thaw cycles. If you didn’t do it perfectly at the right temperature for the right amount of time and repetitions, the eye pad was either too gooey or too rubbery,” she remembers. Once she had the formulation right, Krause-Neufeldt faced the challenge of how to package it. “The original recipe from the CSIR was to cast the gel into trays and cookie-cut it out but this made the process far too labour-intensive and meant we couldn’t upscale the process to produce large enough quantities,” she says. She and her team developed specialised filling and freeze-thaw processes, environmental controls and customised trays, and eventually purchased a packaging machine that delivered the required solution.

In total the product and processes took six years to perfect. During this time, Krause-Neufeldt funded the operation by applying for – and in most cases receiving – finance from every funding instrument she could think of. The technology was so impressive and the product she was trying to develop so unique that she secured over R3,3 million worth of funding from 13 institutions. “My husband was in film and video technology and we worked nights and weekends on extra jobs to support ourselves and fund the project,” she explains. eyeSlices was finally launched at the Professional Beauty Exhibition at Gallagher Estate. “We sold out in two hours on the first day – it was a phenomenal response,” says Krause-Neufeldt. After first launching into salons to secure the professional reputation of the product, she and her team are busy developing a retail line. The interest is global and comes from cosmetic outlets, beauty stores, airlines and mass retailers. There can be no doubt that Krause-Neufeldt has paid her dues and is now set to reap substantial rewards.


25 Of The Most Successful Business Ideas In South Africa

Find out who’s making waves in numerous industries and how they managed to differentiate themselves in local and international industries.

Nicole Crampton



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“Disruption is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition, and rejecting the way things are supposed to be. Disruption goes way beyond advertising, it forces you to think about where you want your brand to go and how to get there,” says Richard Branson.

South Africa has its fair share of innovative and disruptive businesses taking both local and international industries by storm. From cutting edge space technology to reimagined logistics, and innovative business models, here are 25 of the most successful business ideas in South Africa:

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Colin Timmis Says ‘Position Yourself For Success By Starting With The Numbers’

People pay first who they feel pressure from, so people will pay you when they feel pressure from you.






Entrepreneur Colin Timmis founded South Africa’s first cloud accounting practice in 2011, Real Time Accounting. Then, a few years after being appointed as South Africa’s first Xero partner Colin became Xero Country Manager South Africa. Xero is the emerging global leader of online accounting software that connects small businesses to their advisors and other services.

Related: Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

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Two 20 Year Olds Reshape Entrepreneur Landscape With New Social Investment Platform

The Merge vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

Merge Connect




Vital Stats

It’s no secret that finding the right investor for your venture is a challenge that most entrepreneurs face. The current process of finding investment is one that is outdated, and limits entrepreneurs due to a lack of time, and network that is needed to find the right investor. But, this doesn’t have to be the case in today’s digital society, says Zander Matthee and Brandon Bate, co-founders of Merge.

“By making the Internet the middleman, we are able to connect with each other much simpler and faster than before” was Zander’s response. “We have taken advantage of this, and have created a digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors” added Brandon.

Merge is a social platform that connects entrepreneurs and investors. It aims to simplify, refine and accelerate the process of finding investment for entrepreneurs, and the process of finding investment opportunities for investors. From idea to developed, the platform allows entrepreneurs to present a brief outline of their venture to a network of all investor types. While doing this, entrepreneurs are able to browse through, and connect with investor profiles that suit their requirements.

Related: 8 Codes Of Success That Helped Priven Reddy of Kagiso Interactive Media Achieve A Networth Of Over R4 Billion

From Private Investors to Venture Capital, and everything in between, Merge allows all investor types to join. Investors have the opportunity to personalise their feed to suit their investment preferences, and will be able to connect with innovative businesses – that are looking for investment – at their fingertips. Only once there is a mutual interest in each other, are users able to enter a secure private chat where they can discuss further and share documents under the protection of a digital NDA.

The two boys became good friends during their time in high school at St Stithians Boys College. However, it was only in their last year, 2016, that they decided to pursue their dreams and create the platform. They didn’t know how to code, so rather ironically, they needed some form of investment to get the platform off the ground.


“We knew we had a mountain to climb, but we believed in our vision and that we were really trying to make a difference, and if we could get others to see that, they would be onboard.” said Zander.

Related: Lessons From The Rich And Famous: Manage Your Money Like Oprah To Avoid Going Into Debt Like Nicholas Cage

Chris Peters is one of these individuals that bought into their vision, and became Merge’s first investor. As a successful entrepreneur and part time investor , Chris saw how much value the platform could bring to all entrepreneurs and investors alike. His marketing and strategic background gave him insight into how Merge could play a vital role in a lucrative space, Brand involvement.

“Entrepreneurship and SME development are two key factors that drive economic growth in developing countries like South Africa. That is why brands are currently getting involved, and looking to support entrepreneurs through various means. We have built a platform that allows these brands to successfully market, and execute on the programmes they have created to assist entrepreneurs.” said Chris

Merge was created to assist all entrepreneurs and investors in finding exactly what they are looking for, regardless of age, race, sex, financial position or social status. That is why anybody can sign-up as an entrepreneur. As long as you are determined and willing to work for your dreams. For too long has the investor space been seen as an “elite club for the select few”, and Merge is here to change that. Whether you’ve gotten your bonus at the end of the year and looking for new investment opportunities, or are an active investor, you can sign-up. Whether you’re currently working, or a retired industry leader, you can join as a mentor.

Their vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

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