Bamboo bicycles! Yes, you read correctly: bamboo bicycles.
Established by two Californians and two Zambians, the company Zambikes has taken to producing bamboo-made bicycles in Lusaka and then selling them in the United States. These bamboo bikes are sold for around $475 (£290) for road or mountain bike frames, and more than $900 (£550) for a finished cycle - fitted with wheels, pedals, handlebars and brakes.
Zambikes' mission is to "provide high quality bicycles and educational training to unprivileged and service based Zambians." The company produces sturdy cargo bikes, a bike trailer and a bike-drawn "zambulance," now used in 10 clinics around Lusaka. Zambikes also provides technical skills training, business coaching and discretionary loans to its employees. Says Mwewa Chikamba, one of the company's founders: "It was never just about bikes. We wanted to give our workers practical skills and reward their dedication. We want to change lives."
With environmentally friendly bicycles, job creation, job training and useful products, I'd say Zambikes is en route (pun entirely intended) to success.
photo credit: www.bbc.co.uk