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All posts by Graham van der Made: Editor

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [13/03/2017]

    Looking to get into the South African startup scene or scratch up on some of your skills? Well, you've come to the right place. There are loads of competitions, networking sessions and workshops happening around South Africa and the rest of the continent (namely Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana) that we’ve rounded up to make your life a bit easier. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences around South Africa, and the greater region. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or...

  • Q&A: WooTheme’s Mark Forrester talks hacking, investment tips & more [update]

    Mark Forrester is easily one of the most well-known startup founders in the SA industry. In 2015, his co-founded website theme builder WooThemes was acquired by WordPress founding company, Automattic for a rumoured US$30-million, which he commented is "off target, it is a good ballpark". Started in 2008, WooThemes grew to 55 staff members across 20 countries by the time it was acquired in 2015. The company also launched shopping plugin WooCommerce, which saw over 7.5-million downloads and active installs at the time. Along his journey, Forrester has co-founded IT solutions company Gravit8, social media aggregator Afrigator, invested in Over and...

  • New infographic focuses on Cape Town as startup capital of Africa

    A new infographic has been released which shows why Cape Town is the startup capital of Africa. The report has been compiled with the efforts of the City of Cape Town, Invest Cape Town, Wesgro, CiTi and Silicon Cape. The data has been compiled from a number of resources, such as the FNB Property Barometer, SAVCA 2015 Venture Capital Survey and World Economic Forum Global Rankings 2016. "The resources clearly show why the Cape is the leading tech hub in Africa. It is because of our skills pipeline, which is unmatched on the continent, combined with the quality of life and infrastructure in the Cape, and...

  • DPO Group to acquire Botswana, Namibia operations of Virtual Card Service

    Online payments service provider The Direct Pay Online Group (DPO Group), has announced the 100% acquisition of the Botswana and Namibia operations of Virtual Card Service (VCS). The complete 100% equity acquisition of VCS's South African operations are still being finalised and will follow at a later date. Ventureburn asked about the financials details of the African deal, though DPO did not want to disclose the amount. "The VCS team have built a leading market position in the Botswanan and Namibian payments landscapes by offering a distinguished suite of services to all organisations requiring automated, high volume and secure card payment processing," says the...

  • AgriTech platform GreenFingers Mobile secures €70 000 investment

    AgriTech platform, GreenFingers Mobile (GFM) has announced equity seed investment from The Hivos Food & Lifestyle Fund, to the tune of €70 000 (+R960 000). The startup was established in 2015 as a partnership between SA business accelerator Impact Amplifier and mobile-first technology company, Mobenzi. It uses a Software-as-a-Service Android app to provide management and finance to over 5000 smallholder farmers across three African countries. "The GreenFingers solution is an important tool in enabling ethical supply chains, through the management of large, real-time data sets. We hope that GreenFingers can make it easier for large food companies to work with smallholder farmers, playing a...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [06/03/2017]

    Looking to get into the South African startup scene or scratch up on some of your skills? Well, you've come to the right place. There are loads of competitions, networking sessions and workshops happening around South Africa and the rest of the continent (namely Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana) that we’ve rounded up to make your life a bit easier. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences around South Africa, and the greater region. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or...

  • Geeks on a Plane looking for 10 startups to pitch in Cape Town

    Following last week's announcement that startup programme Geeks on a Plane is coming to Africa in March, 10 startups will also be able to pitch their startup at the Cape Town event. Each startup will only have five minutes to pitch their business. Those selected will receive mentorship and feedback from the 500 Startups team, which consists of startups, investors, and executives, as well as angel investors and other players part of the tour. The programme is looking for startups that are generating initial revenue, along with building scalable tech-enabled companies for local and international markets. Those in the seed and idea stages will...

  • Startups take note: an update on IP exchange control

    During the 2017 Budget Speech last week, the National Treasury announced that IP exchange control would be relaxed. While this is still an ongoing process, the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) has now implemented changes to the Currency and Exchanges Manual for Authorised Dealers (Exchange Control Manual). Speaking to ExCo member of Silicon Cape and IP & tech lawyer at law firm Webber Wentzel, Aalia Manie, once again, she says that "that Exchange Control approval is still a requirement for cross-border intellectual property (IP) transactions. But now some of the approvals can be obtained from Authorised Dealers and will not...

  • Geeks on a Plane startup tour coming to Africa in March

    Created by 500 Startups, the Geeks on a Plane (GOAP) startup programme is coming to Africa for the first time. The event consists of startups, investors, and executives who travel to different countries with the goal of exploring cross-border opportunities. Taking place from 30 March to 2 April, the tour will start in Lagos, Nigeria and end in Cape Town, South Africa. The event also looks to meet startups, 'geeks', and investors in the cities it visits, learn more about local tech trends, gain insight into the local markets, and business models. GOAP will visit the likes of CcHUB, the Enterprise Africa Summit,...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [27/02/2017]

    Looking to get into the South African startup scene or scratch up on some of your skills? Well, you've come to the right place. There are loads of competitions, networking sessions and workshops happening around South Africa and the rest of the continent (namely Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana) that we’ve rounded up to make your life a bit easier. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences around South Africa, and the greater region. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or...