BLESSING Nzuza won the Inkunz’Isematholeni Youth in Business Award for his innovative Respo app at the Ithala Business Achievers Awards in uMhlanga last week. Supplied
DURBAN - It wasn’t a fascination with technology that drew Blessing Nzuza into IT and app development, but rather the potential of the internet to access markets and grow a business.

Nzuza - a self-taught IT geek - has developed a mobile app, called Respo, that brings the Uber concept to emergency medical services (EMS) in the hope of helping ambulances to get to patients who need urgent medical treatment quicker, while filtering out non-urgent call outs.

His small Durban business, Dosair, focuses on software development, mobile app design, website design, graphic design, market research and IT consulting.

Nzuza won the Inkunz’Isematholeni Youth in Business Award for his innovative app at the Ithala Business Achievers Awards in uMhlanga last week.

However, Nzuza hasn’t always been involved in IT and had to teach himself the ropes.

He matriculated at Eshowe High School and studied civil engineering at Durban University of Technology, but dropped out to nurture an interest in online businesses.

“I ended up finding myself in the internet space and was always intrigued by the guys who were running online businesses and how many people they could reach.

“I wanted to be in the space to solve problems,” Nzuza said.

“I got involved in buying and selling anti-ageing products online. It exposed me to a lot of business skills,” he said.

However, the market dwindled and Nzuza decided to create his own online platforms.

Without a computer or an internet connection, he started his own web development and digital marketing firm in 2015 and taught himself programming languages, such as HTML, CSS, PHP and Java.

Today, his agency employs six staff and services a range of clients from its office as an incubation business at SmartXchange, in the CBD.

He developed the app to solve the problem of ambulances not arriving at medical emergencies on time,­ ­especially in townships and rural areas.

Nzuza said the app, which he expected to be launched in May, had garnered interest from small operators as well as major medical firms.

The concept was for the ambulance services to register on the app in a similar way as to how Uber drivers do to be able to provide a service to end users.

THE MERCURY