“When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favour.” — Elon Musk

Heinrich de Lange



Organisation / Company



Heinrich de Lange, 28, is the founder and chief executive of Octoco, which assists companies in technical decision-making. His job involves collaboration with its internal product and engineering teams, as well as its clients’ technical teams, to provide guidance on strategic and business decisions, technology selection, architecture and design. The projects range from software development to embedded electronics and internet of things products. “I thrive on turning people’s ideas into reality and solving complex problems that address real-world issues,” he says. As a young engineering graduate one of the challenges he has encountered is dealing with older professionals because there is often a perception that, because you are young, you don’t deserve the same level of respect as someone with more years of experience. “I have overcome this challenge by persisting and building trust. By consistently proving that my team and I are highly competent, despite our age, we have earned the respect we deserve.” Octoco is collaborating with corporate South Africa to establish an incubator to support start-ups and entrepreneurs to develop technology-driven, market-fit products and bring them to market.


B.Eng Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Stellenbosch University


My biggest achievement is building the exceptional team and network I have around me today. I am proud to be associated with such talented and successful individuals, both within the companies I am involved with and in my broader professional network. These relationships are built on mutual respect, trust and a shared commitment to excellence.

Collaborating with these remarkable people enables us to move quickly, innovate effectively, and achieve our goals efficiently. Their diverse skills and insights have been instrumental in driving our collective success. I am continually inspired by their dedication and expertise and I am grateful for the opportunity to work alongside them as we tackle complex challenges and create meaningful impact.

Some of the biggest lessons I have learned are that failure is an integral part of the journey and sometimes critical for ultimate success. I have been fortunate enough to witness many failures, which have provided invaluable learning experiences. These lessons have not only helped me grow but also enabled me to guide other companies in avoiding similar pitfalls.
Embracing failure has taught me resilience, adaptability, and the importance of continuous improvement. By understanding and analysing past mistakes, I can offer better advice and support to those I work with, helping them navigate challenges more effectively and achieve their goals with greater confidence.


I’ve had many mentors throughout my journey, but I’ve always strived to be my own person. I’ve taken bits and pieces of what I valued from each mentor and incorporated them into my life.