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  • When you’re a mom running a growing tech startup it’s all about multitasking

    For tech entrepreneur Chantalle ten Napel Wilson being a mom and a business owner comes down to one thing -- a lot of multitasking. Wilson, the founder of online vehicle retailing platform Virtual Drive and a mother of two, recalls how she has often had to conclude business meetings inside her car with a client seated next to her, while rushing to pick up her children from school. But she says most of her clients who find themselves in her car finishing a meeting react only positively. “Most people have said that it’s incredible that you do this,” she says. Says Wilson: “As an investor once told...

  • Company Office

    Zapacab shifts it up a gear with new look and features

    We recently released a new version of our Zapacab mobile site with new features requested by users. The two most worthy of being noted are that of the abilty to view and edit your detected location to make sure the driver knows exactly where you are, and the ability to easily call the driver once he has accepted your trip. Both these features allow for far greater transparency when using cabs. Check out our blog for a bit more information. Our driver numbers are increasing every day with more and more calling in to get involved. They undergo a process of...

  • Winners of 2018 Resolution Social Venture Challenge announced

    Fifteen teams comprising 32 African social entrepreneurs have been selected as winners of the 2018 Resolution Social Venture Challenge. The challenge is an initiative of the Mastercard Foundation and The Resolution Project, a non-profit organisation which aims to foster youth leadership development through collaborative social entrepreneurship. A total of 30 teams of Mastercard Foundation Scholars gathered in Kigali, Rwanda to compete in the challenge, for a fellowship that includes seed funding, mentorship, and access to a network of innovators seeking global change through high impact community projects. The Resolution Social Venture Challenge winners will receive seed funding and mentorship to lead impactful projects in...

  • A whopping $25 000 up for grabs at Startup Battlefield Africa 2018

    US tech publication TechCrunch will award the founders of the winning startup at this year's Startup Battlefield Africa with $25 000 in equity-free prize money. Applications (click to apply) for the second edition of the startup competition, which will be held in Lagos, Nigeria on 11 December, are set to close on 3 September. A total of 15 startups will be shortlisted for the finals. The 15 will receive training on pitching before they duke it out in front of investors and a live audience at the Startup Battlefield event. Startup Battlefield Africa judges are looking for startups that are most likely to produce an exit...

  • It’s confirmed – SA’s first female focused angel fund to launch this year

    In what may be a first for South Africa, the country is set to get its first angel fund focused entirely on women-owned businesses. Alexandra Fraser, one of the organisation's founding members, confirmed that Johannesburg-based Dazzle Angels will start operating later this year. The organisation's founding team is comprised of an all-women team that includes Fraser, who is the founder of Fraser Consulting, JAG Method co-founder Adi Zuk, JAG Group COO Lee Zuk, and Charlotte Luzuka. In a brief phone call earlier today Fraser told Ventureburn that the fund -- which is yet to open applications for investment -- is still in the "early stages" of setting up. She explained that...

  • TIA calls on innovators to submit funding proposals for waste, water solutions

    The Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) is calling on startups and innovators to submit proposals that tackle ewaste and waste beneficiation, as well as Acid Mine Drainage, water purification, water saving and repairing water leakages. The deadline for proposals to be submitted and considered for funding is by the end of September. Funding of R650 000 and above will be considered for successful applicants. Compulsory briefing sessions will be conducted across the country later this month to facilitate and assist applicants to understand the TIA application requirements (see below for dates). To qualify for funding applicants must have developed a proof of concept (an idea that has been...

  • Here are the finalists of the second edition of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge

    Pan-African banking conglomerate Ecobank has announced the 11 finalists of the second edition of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge. In a statement last week, Ecobank Group executive for operations and technology Eddy Ogbogu said the bank was "delighted" by the quality of the challenge finalists and had high hopes they will capitalise on the mentoring and support of the group. The 11 finalists are: Lypa (Kenya), Wallet.Ng (Nigeria), Nala (Tanzania), Litee (Benin), SESO Global (South Africa), InvestED (Sierra Leone), Secapay (Nigeria), Virtual Identity (developed by e4 from South Africa), MojiPay (Togo), Eversend(France), and Awamo (Germany). The 11 finalists will exhibit and pitch at an Innovation Fair and award's ceremony set to be held...

  • Fintech platform Mines raises $13m in Series-A round led by The Rise Fund

    US-based fintech Mines -- which was founded by a Nigerian team -- has raised $13-million in a Series-A round led by US impact investor The Rise Fund. The startup announced the funding in a statement last week. The investment will finance talent acquisition, and expansion into Africa, South America, and South East Asia. The deal will see TPG Growth's Yemi Lalude, and Velocity Capital's Willem Willemstein join Mine's board of directors. Velocity Capital, Western Technology Investments, First Ally Capital, X/Seed Capital, NYCA Partners, Persistent Capital, Singularity Investments, Trans Sahara Investments, and the Bank of Industry also participated in the round. Mines plans to use the investment to fund talent acquisition, and expansion into Africa, South America,...

  • Debate rages over whether VC investors biased towards expat-founded startups

    Concern is brewing over the large number of venture capital (VC) deals in East Africa involving expat founders -- with both local and foreign entrepreneurs in the region weighing in in recent months over whether venture capitalists have a clear bias towards investing in tech startups that count foreigners among their founders. In all four of the five VC deals Ventureburn has reported on in East Africa so far this year have involved startups founded by expats -- with the latest being Sokowatch's $2-million deal involving 4Dx Ventures (the founders are pictured above -- see the story here). Earlier this year, Kenyan tech site...

  • Nedbank, Plug and Play to host The Disruption Agenda in Joburg

    SA bank Nedbank is partnering with Silicon Valley accelerator Plug and Play to bring 10 international startups to an event in South Africa next month to connect with major companies and business leaders. In an announcement yesterday, Nedbank said the event, The Disruption Agenda will be held in Johannesburg. The 10 companies are all graduates of the Plug and Play accelerator platform and were identified as relevant disruptors to solving cross-sector business challenges at a corporate level within the local market. Mika Stanvliet, a PR representative for Plug and Play and Nedbank, said she could not divulge the names of the 10 startups without getting their pre-approval first. While The Disruption Agenda will be a...

  • Six takeaways from Jack Ma and his speech to African tech entrepreneurs

    Last week, Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma spoke at what is arguably one of the most important tech events to have taken place so far this year on the continent. In his speech on Wednesday in Johannesburg, Ma challenged African entrepreneurs to look at problems as opportunities, called on governments to create tax policies that are favourable for startups and entrepreneurs and announced plans for his $10-million African Netpreneur Prize initiative. In case you missed his speech (which can still be streamed online), here's what stood out: 1.When everything is ready, it's too late One of the main highlights of Ma's speech was the recurring theme on...