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All posts by Daniel Mpala

  • Bank, local hub launch $1-million fund for Somalian startups

    Mogadishu-based Premier Bank and Somalian business support organisation iRise Hub yesterday launched a $1-million fund aimed at backing the country’s startups. Premier Bank chairman Jibril Mohamed (pictured above) announced the launch of the fund yesterday (25 October) during the closing ceremony of the 2018 Mogadishu Tech Summit which kicked off on Tuesday (23 October). We are happy to announce a one million Dollar fund for financing the startups in #Somalia in collaboration with Irisehub#MTS2018. Our Chairman, Jibril Mohamed has announced this at the Mogadishu Tech Summit closing ceremony. pic.twitter.com/V5xJd60pmc — Premier Bank (@premierbankSO) October 25, 2018 It was not immediately clear whether the fund...

  • Payments space not over saturated in Africa argues Village Capital head

    African fintech startups are beginning to branch out away from the payments space into other sub-sectors -- such as agri-finance, insurtech and alternative credit scoring -- a report by US-based venture capital (VC) firm Village Capital has found. But the VC says this isn't a sign that the payments sector in Africa is necessarily over saturated. The report -- released earlier this month and titled Beyond Payments: The next generation of fintech startups in Sub-Saharan Africa -- is based on 165 fintech startups from 18 countries that applied to join Village Capital's Fintech Africa 2018 programme, which the VC runs with US payments platform PayPal. Village Capital...

  • Uprise.Africa crowdfunding platform nets investment from Silicon Valley VC

    SA equity crowdfunding platform Uprise.Africa has secured an undisclosed investment from Silicon Valley based venture capital (VC) firm Nexxus Ventures. In a statement yesterday (23 October), Uprise.Africa said the investment round was concluded on a R60-million evaluation. Uprise.Africa added that the investment will enable it to launch new deals on its platform in the coming months. The investment, Uprise.Africa said, was attributed to the platform being the only regulated equity crowdfunding platform in South Africa and to the "significant experience" of the platform's CEO Tabassum Qadir (pictured above). Uprise.Africa chief marketing officer Inge Prins told Ventureburn today (24 October) that the funding will be invested across...

  • German-based VC GreenTec Capital Partners to open office in Lagos

    Frankfurt-based venture capital (VC) firm GreenTec Capital Partners has announced that it will expand its footprint in West Africa by opening an office in Lagos, Nigeria. In a post on its website last Wednesday (17 October), Greentec Capital Partners said the opening of the Lagos office -- which the firm said represents its second step in the VC's African expansion strategy -- will give it better access to West Africa, and particularly Nigeria. The firm stated that the Lagos office will be run by newly appointed members David Ogundeko and Eniola Lawal. The VC firm already has two offices in Africa --...

  • Sonic Ventures launches R1.5-billion fund to back high-growth tech companies

    Sonic Ventures, a Cape Town based investment company that plans to target early-stage tech companies, yesterday (19 October) launched a R1.5-billion fund that plans to back high-growth tech ventures -- largely in SA, US and UK. Speaking during a presentation yesterday at the Pepperclub Hotel and Spa in Cape Town, Sonic Ventures' US-born CEO Joseph Gough (pictured above) said the firm plans to list 35-million shares at R45-per share on SA online shareholder administration platform Equity Express Securities Exchange (EESE). The expected listing date is 29 November. Sonic Ventures' R1.5-billion fund will target an internal rate of return (IRR) of more than 25% Gough said he...

  • Hardware technology incubator Savant looking at setting up venture fund

    Cape Town based hardware tech incubator Savant is considering setting up a venture fund which will likely be launched next year in the first quarter, says the incubator's CEO Nick Allen. Allen (pictured above) revealed the plans on the sidelines of the incubator's Demo Day on Tuesday (17 October). "We are, from a Savant perspective, looking at building our own venture fund, and we are getting some interest and traction and that," he said. He pointed to how there is a particular "real need and a real opportunity" to fund hardware tech ventures immediately after they receive technology development funding from the Department...

  • Yellowwoods funding will gives us at least three years of runway – Simply founder

    The recent investment into insurtech Simply Financial Services by investment group Yellowwoods will give the startup "at least three years of runway" says the startup's CEO Anthony Miller. Cape Town based Simply Financial Services, which Miller (pictured above, right) along with Simon Nicholson (pictured above, left) and Shaun Dippnall founded in 2016, announced on Tuesday (16 October) that it had secured a "significant multi-year funding commitment" from Yellowwoods. Responding to Ventureburn questions yesterday (17 October), Miller would not disclose the size of the investment and the equity share that Yellowwoods will take. He however hinted that the deal is worth "tens of millions of...

  • HAVAÍC acquires 10% stake in SA real-estate portal Instant Property

    Cape Town based venture capital (VC) company Havaíc has acquired a 10% equity stake in commercial real-estate portal Instant Property. In a statement yesterday (15 October), Havaíc said it has advanced the first round of financing -- for which it has acquired a 10% equity stake -- with an allocation for follow-on funding at Instant Property's option. If the option is exercised, Havaíc will hold in total up to 17% equity stake in the real-estate portal. As part of the deal Havaíc executive director Grant Rock will join the Instant Property board in a non-executive capacity. While Instant Property founder and executive chairman Wayne Berger...

  • Crossfin acquires majority stake in payment solutions company Crossgate [Updated]

    Cape Town based fintech holding company Crossfin has acquired a majority stake in SA payment solutions company Crossgate for an undisclosed amount. The deal, which was announced yesterday (10 October), follows Crossfin's partnership with SA bank and asset management group Investec to identify and invest in early-stage fintech businesses. In a statement yesterday (11 October), Crossfin COO and co-founder Anton Gaylard said Crossgate has a 10-year track record of forming strategic partnerships with international payment associations, payment card manufacturers, mobile payment experts, processors and other technology providers that enable commerce. In a subsequent email to Ventureburn, Gaylard explained that media technology company Tritech Media previously owned...

  • SA’s Aerobotics launches five new precision agriculture products

    Cape Town based aerial-data analytics startup Aerobotics has launched five new innovative precision agriculture products that aim to help fruit and wine farmers to detect pests and diseases. The startup launched the new products yesterday (11 October) at an event held at Leopard's Leap Family Vineyards in Franschhoek, near Cape Town. The event was also live-streamed to 11 satellite locations in South Africa (these were in: Kirkwood, the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast, Citrusdal, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Patensie, Tzaneen, Nelspruit and Hartswater. The new products -- which Aerobotics CEO and co-founder James Paterson (pictured above) said are an industry first -- include a drone scouting application, software...