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All posts by Daniel Mpala

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [10/3/2019]

    This week Cape Town hosts two big summits, the first, Seamless Africa 2019 kicks off on Tuesday (12 March) and will cover payments, fintech, ecommerce and retail. The second, CMS Africa Summit, kicks gets started on Friday (15 March) and delves into open source content management systems. For those in Durban, you'll want to attend the city's Startup Grind chapter as they host Hashtag Stories founders Yusuf and Sumaiya Omar on Wednesday (13 March). Elsewhere on the continent, Tunisia will host the continent's first African Islamic Fintech Summit this week. The historic event kicks off on Saturday (16 March) in...

  • Nigeria’s OneFi secures $5m debt facility for its Paylater mobile platform

    Lagos based finance company OneFi today announced that is has secured a $5-million debt facility from New York and Nairobi-based debt platform Lendable. In a statement today (8 March), OneFi said the investment will be used to deploy more loans on its consumer facing mobile platform Paylater. The platform also helps users transfer money, recharge airtime and pay bills. OneFi was founded in 2012 by CEO Chijioke Dozie and director Ngozi Dozie. Business intelligence platform Crunchbase estimates that -- excluding this latest investment -- OneFi has raised a total of $10.8-million across three funding rounds. OneFi was founded in 2012 by...

  • Here’s what you need to know about the 2019 Orange Social Venture Prize

    The 2019 Orange Social Venture Prize is offering three of the best innovative and socially responsible tech startups in Africa and the Middle East a grand total of €50 000 in prize money. Now in its ninth year, the Orange Social Venture Prize seeks to promote social innovation by supporting high-tech solutions -- that are based on mobile tech and the internet -- that serve the needs of the poorest populations in Africa and the Middle East. The competition's first, second and third grand prize winners will receive €25 000, €15 000, and €10 000, respectively. In addition, French telecoms corporation...

  • Michael Jordaan backed crypto trading platform VALR raises $1.5m seed round [Updated]

    Joburg based cryptocurrency trading platform VALR -- whose investors include local venture capitalist Michael Jordaan -- has raised $1.5-million in a seed round led by US crypto exchange Bittrex. VALR co- founder and CEO Farzam Ehsani told blockchain news publication CoinDesk last week that the startup had entered into a "backend partnership" with Bittrex which will offer VALR "global liquidity and competitive prices" for crypto-to-crypto trading. Ehsani (pictured above, left) also told the publication VALR was working on "activating fiat on-ramps" with local banks. VALR's platform currently supports trade in 50 cryptocurrencies. VALR's founders include CEO Farzam Ehsani, CPO Badi Sudhakaran and...

  • Beyond Capital finalises Tulaa seed round with $25k capital injection

    Impact investment fund Beyond Capital has finalised its participation in Nairobi-based agritech and fintech startup Tulaa's seed round with a $25 000 capital injection. Tulaa was founded in 2017 by CEO Hillary Miller-Wise (pictured above). The startup's platform connects agricultural-input suppliers, financial service providers and commodity buyers with smallholder farmers. In July last year, Miller-Wise announced on LinkedIn that her startup had closed a $627 000 seed round led by Canadian impact investor AHL Venture Partners. Beyond Capital -- which invests in India and East Africa -- along with Global Partnerships/Eleos Social Venture Fund were also involved in the round....

  • Sanral searching for innovators to work with on smart road solutions

    Are you working on, or have you developed smart road solutions that could contribute to road safety? State-owned enterprise the SA National Roads Agency (Sanral) is looking for such startups that it can work with. Sanral Technical Innovation Hub head Kobus van der Walt (pictured above) told Venturburn in an email last Wednesday (27 February) that the agency wants to work with innovators to "potentially" incubate their ideas and develop workable solutions that can be implemented. To be considered, projects will have to be in line with Sanral's strategic objectives. "Research is costly, so instead of re-inventing the wheel, Sanral would like...

  • Dineplan bags first accolade at 2019 Cape Town Experiences Magazine Awards

    Restaurant booking app Dineplan has won the Most Innovative Tech Solution in the Food and Beverage Industry category at this year's Cape Town Experiences Magazine Awards. The reservation app was founded in 2011 by Martin Rose and Greg Whitfield. In an email today (4 March), Whitfield said the award, which the startup received at a ceremony at Cape Town restaurant Nomad Bistro last month, is the company's first major accolade. "It is always fantastic to receive recognition, especially for a product years in the making. The fact that 40% of the win was from public votes means the team’s dedication to make...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [3/3/2019]

    For those in Cape Town this week, look out for Africa Tech Week, which takes place on Monday and Tuesday (4 and 5 March) at Century City, as well as the Blockchain Africa Conference which takes place at the same location on Tuesday. Fuck Up Nights Nairobi is back with this year's first event taking place on Wednesday (3 March) at Mettā Nairobi. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup events, competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences in Africa. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or next week’s,...

  • CcHub planning on launching more Design Labs across the continent says founder

    The Lagos-based Co-Creation Hub (CcHub) is planning to launch further design labs on the continent, CcHub CEO and founder Bosun Tijani has revealed to Ventureburn. Tijani's comments, which he made in an email yesterday (28 February), follow the centre's launch of its first CcHub Design Lab in Kigali, Rwanda last month. In a statement announcing the launch of the design lab, CcHub described the launch of the centre as "an unprecedented next step" in Africa's tech sector. We’ve invested $11-million into the Design Lab project says CcHub founder Bosun Tijani CcHub said the lab is set to become a "leading creative space". He...

  • I’M IN Accelerator to commence with all-women cohort in May

    An all women cohort is in the pipeline at Johannesburg-based I'M IN Accelerator, and is set to start in May with the aim of accelerating at least five startups, says I'M IN Accelerator executive director and founder Polo Leteka. Commenting in an email last Thursday (21 February), Leteka (pictured above) -- who is also the executive director and founder of IDF Capital -- said the intention with the all women cohort is aimed at broadening women participation in the tech sector. "We are quite positive that the all-female cohort planned for May 2019, will provide invaluable lessons on sourcing, supporting and...

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