"Waterless Bath" Meet the Brain Behind: Ludwick Marishane

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Zimbabwe and some other parts of Africa have witnessed a poor rainy season and it seems drought is already looming for the majority of its population. According to the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee’s 2018 Rural Livelihoods Assessment, approximately 2.4 million people in rural Zimbabwe—approximately 28 percent of the rural population—will be severely food insecure by March 2019.

Already water is scarce in both rural and urban areas and worse still the demand for water by both industry and domestic uses and in most cities like Harare there have been stringent water rations and many a time the residents have been complaining about the unsafe water coming out of their taps. Modern entrepreneurship definition is also about transforming the world by solving big problems. Like initiating social, creating an innovative product, or presenting a new life-changing solution just across the Limpopo a young entrepreneur came up with a solution that can help ease the demand for water by reducing the water consumption during bathing. 

 In 2011, Ludwick Marishane, the Founder of DryBath was rated as the best student entrepreneur in the world, and in the same year Google named him one of the ‘12 Brightest Young Minds in the World’. And there’s more. In December 2013 TIME magazine named him one of the thirty people under thirty who are changing the world. He was one of only two Africans on the list.

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Ludwick Marishane won the Marishane the 2011 Global Student Entrepreneur of the Year Award, with a US$10 000 (about R86 000 then) prize to boot through his product, the DryBath which is a clear germicidal and moisturizing gel that’s applied to the skin in the manner of waterless hand cleaners, although it has a sweet aroma rather than the distinctive alcohol smell of the latter.  His Product means that less time is spent especially in the rural areas to fetch water to the river or wells and it also means more hygienic baths as most of the alternative sources are now polluted.

Marishane organized a no-bath weekend from 5 to 7 July 2013, which coincided with the fourth anniversary of the invention of DryBath.The main goal was to get 10 million people to hygienically skip a bath once a week during 2013, even if they don’t use DryBath, and save the precious resource of water. What if we try something like this in Harare?

The sales statistics are nothing short of phenomenal. About 80% of the product is sold online through their company website to export markets like the USA, Asia, and Europe with the remainder being sold to institutional organizations like United Nations. Buy your Satchet Here: 

Below is what Ludwick had to say, Excerpts from the book Win

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“When I started working on DryBath, the big problem I was dealing with
was a solution to global hygiene where in some countries families were
forking out a fortune on bottled water just to bath. So for me it was
about developing a winning formula. I said to myself, I can build a
hygiene company and create a new category on the retail shelf.”

 “Even when I was poor and I didn’t get money from the idea – and everybody laughed at me, I still found a purpose in it.”

 “My dad’s background is human resources and I think he was always trying
to create the perfect ‘employee’ from day one. On the first day of
primary school a girl comes up to me and asks how much the hamburger is
that I’m eating and because of my poor English I have no idea what she
is saying. When I recounted it to my father, he was obviously not
impressed because from there on he bought me extra books and forced to
me read the Sunday Times Read and Write supplement. And every
day at 7 pm I had to give a presentation or a report-back to him on my
day’s activities. I kept doing that up until grade four, when I got
straight As.

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