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All posts by Daniel Mpala

  • Silicon Cape: Ellen Fischat and Alexandra Fraser resign

    Ellen Fischat has stepped down as managing director of Silicon Cape, while another long standing member of the organisation's leadership team, director and board member Alexandra Fraser has also resigned. Fraser said the two resignations are unrelated. In a phone call earlier today, Fischat (pictured above) confirmed that she had resigned from the organisation on Monday (5 February). She said she had taken the decision to pursue "a few other opportunities" and that she would be staying in the local tech innovation space. Fischat joined the organisation in May last year, becoming Silicon Cape's first permanent managing director. Read more: New Silicon Cape head pledges to make sector’s...

  • Wealth Migrate set to launch public sale of WealthE coin on 14 March

    Global real estate platform Wealth Migrate is set to launch the public sale of its WealthE coin on 14 March. The South African company launched a token presale of WealthE in December 2017. Read more: Wealth Migrate launches pretoken sale to ‘democratise investing’ "We are in the process of finalising our presale in order to ensure that we have all the safety precautions in place in terms of security for contributors and plan to launch the public sale portion of the token sale on March 14th," Wealth Migrate CEO Scott Picken told Ventureburn in an email. "As you have published before, ensuring that...

  • Blockchain surveillance startup Faceter claims to raise $10m in 20 seconds

    In what could be South Africa's fastest and most successful token presale, Johannesburg-based blockchain surveillance startup Faceter claims it raised over US$10-million in 20 seconds during a sale held on Monday. Speaking in a video posted on the company's Twitter account yesterday, Faceter CEO and co-founder Robert Pothier announced the outcome of the presale and added that he "believed in the project being spread around the world". The token presale was conducted on a whitelist basis, after a process that saw over 8 000 applicants from 152 countries apply to take part in the presale, the company claimed. Faceter develops smart video surveillance solutions with...

  • I’M IN Accelerator aiming for an all-women cohort before the end of the year

    I'M IN Accelerator has revealed that it intends to run an all-women cohort this year. The Johannesburg-based accelerator, launched last year by IDF Capital and aimed at high-growth black tech startups, is currently in the middle of its inaugural cohort, which is set to conclude the first phase of acceleration later this month. IDF Capital executive director Polo Leteka said yesterday that the all-female cohort is "the programme's biggest plan for 2018". "In our experience we have not seen a lot of females playing in this space because of the lack of targeted programmes to empower and grow them, amongst other reasons. We have...

  • Here are six tips on strategy we learnt from Getsmarter’s Sam Paddock

    For most entrepreneurs, delivering the right strategy can not only decide the fate of the business but also influence how and if a business can scale. For Cape Town-based edtech startup Getsmarter, four years ago, a growing business necessitated a change in strategy. "We were scaling up the organisation, that comes with its set of challenges. We needed to reboot," said Getsmarter CEO Sam Paddock, speaking at an event held last week Thursday at Rise Cape Town. Paddock (pictured above) said at the time the company "ended up hitting its own ceiling". "At 70 people, things were falling over, processes weren't working as well...

  • EasyEquities puts startup crowdfunding offering ‘on hold until further notice’

    Investment platform EasyEquities has put its crowdfunding startup investment offering, which was set to launch tomorrow (1 February), on hold until further notice. Purple Group vice-president of business development Almero Oosthuizen (pictured above) informed Ventureburn of the decision yesterday in an email. "After various attempts to make the investment process as seamless and transparent as possible for our users, we have decided that the current solution was too complex and not transparent enough to satisfy the EasyEquities mantra," said Oosthuizen. EasyEquities crowdfunding investment round was set to launch on 1 February First announced last year in December, EasyEquities crowdfunding campaign entailed an indirect investment into a...

  • Can these four entrepreneurs save Cape Town from city’s water crisis?

    Cape Town's Day Zero is closing in. Dam levels are currently at 26.3%. When levels drop to 13.5% the municipality plans to switch off taps. Might this crop of innovators then be able to help the city to tackle its water crisis? The city last week published contingency plans for Day Zero -- while Western Cape premier Helen Zille has said she is looking to partner with the private sector to cope with Day Zero. Here then are four innovators that could help the city to reduce its water usage: Bridgiot Founded in 2015 by MJ Booysen, this Stellenbosch-based internet of things (IoT) startup has developed an innovative smart water...

  • Under three days left to apply to pitch at SANBio bioscience innovation conference

    Want to pitch your biotech startup, research idea, concept or prototype to regional and international stakeholders in the bio-sciences sector? Then you might want to register to pitch at the SANBio annual event. Registrations close this Thursday (1 February). The event is organised by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development's Southern Africa Network for Biosciences (SANBio) and serves as a platform to discuss issues in biosciences in the region. This year's event, which takes place between 27 and 28 February in Pretoria, will see innovators, researchers, investors, academics and policy makers gather to discuss the commercialisation of research technologies in bio-sciences. SANBio's annual event...

  • Launchlab to move from lecture sessions to online content says incubator head

    Stellenbosch incubator Launchlab plans to move from lecture-style sessions to offering more online content for its Lean Iterator and Countdown Programmes which participants will be able to watch in their own time, says the incubator's CEO Philip Marais. The Lean Iterator and Countdown programmes are part of the incubator's Breakthrough Innovation Programme which it offers to corporate clients to access innovative startups. "The startup participants will then come together to discuss the content and its implementation with the content provider and in so doing increase the number and quality of interactions during the facilitation sessions," said Marais (pictured above) in an email today to Ventureburn. "We will also include...

  • Challenges women entrepreneurs face are more visible says ImpactHER founder

    The challenges women entrepreneurs in Africa face when accessing finance -- though not unique to women -- are often more visible in women-led businesses believes Efe Ukala, an investment lawyer and founder of non-profit ImpactHER. These says she says include financial management and putting in place good governance. "Based on my observation while advising on investors transactions arising out of east, west and southern Africa, I believe that these issues are common in most African countries, although cloaked in slightly different colours," says Ukala (pictured above). Her organisation ImpactHER -- which Ukala launched last year -- aims to train African female entrepreneurs scale their businesses and...

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