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All posts by Daniel Mpala

  • Cape Town carpooling platform Jumpin Rides raises R1.8-million

    Cape Town based carpooling platform Jumpin Rides has raised R1.8-million from undisclosed local and international angel investors. The investment deal had however been concluded already in May -- the startup's co-founder Pauline du Paty (pictured above) revealed in an email to Ventureburn yesterday (26 July). Jumpin Rides claims it currently has more than 10 000 users on its platform. "Our objective is to bring the startup to the next level by investing these funds into integrating new functionalities, launching mobile apps, marketing, and starting to look at other African markets," said Paty. She added that her vision is to expand the startup's service to the rest...

  • How football helped kick off Nigerian agritech startup Farmcrowdy

    In just 18 months Nigerian agritech platform Farmcrowdy has grown to helping 7000 farmers on farm land across nine states in Nigeria to help fund the purchase of inputs such as seed, fertiliser and day-old chicks. Farmcrowdy assists farmers to source funding to buy farm inputs. Last year the startup raised $1-million in a round from Techstars, Cox Ventures and Social Capital. But, just how did the Lagos-based startup -- which last week won the Digital Business of the Year Award at the 2018 Global African Business Awards -- achieve such success so quickly? Farmcrowdy CEO and founder Onyeka Akumah, who will speak at a Startup Grind Lagos event this...

  • MyLifeline to put R200k prize money into marketing, setting up web presence

    Days after winning the Santam Safety Ideas Challenge, Stellenbosch-based wearables startup MyLifeline will invest a portion of its R200 000 winnings in marketing and setting up an online presence, says co-founder Herman Bester. In an email to Ventureburn last week Friday (20 July) Bester revealed that part of the prize money would be used for "packaging, marketing and online presence". "We also have plans for further technological innovation, which is extremely exciting. We have so many applications for our product. This money will help us to reduce our long-term planning to medium term," he said. Bester, along with co-founder Anton Swanevelder, have developed an Internet-of-Things...

  • SA startup Aerobotics secures funding round from Nedbank VC fund [Updated]

    Local corporate and investment bank Nedbank has invested an undisclosed amount in Cape Town based aerial data-analytics startup Aerobotics. The bank was the lead investor in a Series-A round in which several other investors also took part, including a number from Silicon Valley. Among those that took part in the round (see below note at the foot of the story for the remaining list of investors) were online investment marketplace AgFunder and Silicon Valley investor Joe Caruso. Cape Town based venture capital 4Di Capital, which together with the Savannah Fund last year provided seed funding of R8-million to the startup, also took part in the round. Earlier today online business publication Moneyweb...

  • All 10 startups chosen for SBC AfriTech 2018 market ready – accelerator head

    The 10 startups that have been selected by Startupbootcamp (SBC) AfriTech for its 2018 cohort all have “market-ready” solutions, with SBC's sponsors ready to work with them “starting from today” -- the accelerator's CEO Philip Kiracofe said yesterday. Kiracofe was speaking at the announcement of the 10 startups selected to join the Cape Town-based accelerator’s second cohort, which was made yesterday, at the end of a two-day selection process held at PwC’s offices in Cape Town. The sponsors of the accelerator -- which recently underwent a name change to Startupbootcamp AfriTech to better reflect its focus on African tech -- include among others big names like RCS, BNP Paribas, Nedbank and Old Mutual. During the announcement...

  • DEMO Ventures reveals five countries its new $100m fund for startups will target

    Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. These are the five countries that a new $100-million fund -- to be launched in October by DEMO Ventures -- will focus on, revealed the fund's incoming CEO Tania Ngima yesterday. DEMO Ventures is the investment arm of DEMO Africa, an initiative which runs pitching competitions and aims to serve as a launchpad for innovative African tech. In an email yesterday (11 July) Ngima (pictured above) told Ventureburn that the fund -- which was registered in Kenya in November last year -- will invest in early-stage tech startups across various verticals. These include consumer web and mobile, renewable energy, and...

  • Nigerian startups dominate lineup in edtech incubator Injini’s second cohort

    After receiving over 800 applications from 36 countries across Africa, Cape Town based edtech incubator Injini today (11 July) unveiled the eight startups that will make up its second cohort. The eight -- which hail from Ethiopia, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, and Zimbabwe -- were selected from a pool of 8oo entries which was then whittled down to 15 finalists. Speaking on the sidelines of an event hosted at Amazon Web Services' office in Cape Town -- where the announcement was made -- Injini founder Jamie Martin (pictured above) said the incubator had been guided in its selection of the cohort by three criteria. Three...

  • US impact investor invests $250k in Ghanaian startup Redbird Health Tech

    US impact investor Gray Matters Capital has invested up "to $250 000" in Ghanaian medical diagnostics startup Redbird Health Tech. Gray Matters Capital announced the investment -- which was conducted through its GMC coLABS portfolio -- in a statement today (11 July). In a phone call with Ventureburn today (11 July) the startup's co-founder Andrew Quao said he could not disclose the details around how much had been invested, citing an agreement with Gray Matters Capital. He however said the investment "was in the range" of the $250 000 investment ticket sizes that the GMC coLABS usually invests in startups. Ghananian startup Redbird Health Tech...

  • Red Bull Basement programme to support innovators who solve social problems

    A new programme by energy drink company Red Bull aims to support five tech startups that seek to solve socially relevant problems within the urban, township and rural areas. The Red Bull Basement residency programme, launched last month, will be based in Johannesburg and run for two months. Participants will be provided with funding, mentorship and access to a maker space. "The main thing is to identify solutions that are able to solve socially relevant problems within the urban, township and rural areas through the use of technology while impacting their lives in a positive way," said Mixo Ngoveni, the programme's brand manager. In a...

  • EXCLUSIVE: Augmentors reveal launch date of AR, blockchain mobile game

    Michael Deon, the founder of Augmentors -- the world's first augmented reality (AR) mobile game backed by the bitcoin blockchain -- has announced that he plans next month to run an alpha launch of the game. The final version set to be launched in the fourth quarter of this year. Deon revealed this on Thursday last week (4 July) on the sidelines of a Startup Grind event in Cape Town. The company which initially pitched on Shark Tank, raised $1-million from an initial coin offering (ICO) which ran between January and February last year. After the August alpha launch, the final version of the Augmentors...