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All posts by Jacques Coetzee

Jacques Coetzee
Jacques grew up in Stellenbosch, South Africa. Keen to take over the world, one word at a time, he has always been interested in both politics and development and studied International Relations (BA) at Stellenbosch University. With an interest in innovation and social change, he seeks to tell the inspiring stories that highlight socio-environmental and economic impact. A former Ventureburn editor, Jacques has changed career paths and is now a Trend Analyst at Lacuna Innovation.
  • Recruitment marketplace OfferZen sees fantastic growth in SA dev sector

    Since Ventureburn last caught up with recruitment marketplace OfferZen in January, the Cape Town-based company has been flaunting some impressive growth. It has strengthened its team from three to nine in order to expand its operations to Gauteng and ultimately corner SA’s software developer job market. OfferZen is an online jobs marketplace for software developers. Both the companies seeking developers and the developers themselves apply to be listed on the website. Once accepted, companies send interview requests to developers, specifying salary, and benefits upfront. The developer can then choose whether they accept the interview request or not. While certainly not limited...

  • This crowdsourced phrasebook app wants to help South Africans understand each other

    South Africa, like our ever globalising world, is made up of a really diverse bunch. It's colourful but often messy. This is where Aweza steps in. It's a novel app that wants to help people better communicate and understand each other. Developed in Cape Town, Aweza is a phrasebook app which essentially pairs pictures with common phrases. It relies on crowdsourcing and gamification techniques to ensure correct pronunciations of South Africa's 11 languages. Pretty cool, right? But for the guys currently behind this project -- Glen Stein, Jeanne Fourie and Farrel Strul -- it's more than an educational product. It's about...

  • A Day in the Life of: Silvertree Capital VC Manuel Koser [Native Article]

    Cape Town-based Silvertree Capital kicked the year off on an epic note when it committed US$10-million towards internet companies on the African continent. The VC firm surely had good reason to so. Its portfolio has been boasting record growth over the last two years and shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, it had to move its office recently to accommodate a bigger crew. For the last edition of our A Day in the Life of… series, we're zooming in on the life of the VC -- Silvertree co-founder Manuel Koser. Before Silvertree Capital, Koser co-founded and served as co-CEO...

  • Knife Capital announces R100m fund to amplify more SA startups

    Renowned South African venture capital (VC) firm Knife Capital has launched a new investment fund called KNF Ventures. With a rather generous target of R100-million, the fund will invest in innovation-driven startups by providing tax incentives and high returns. The announcement also adds to an increase in confidence for South Africa's startups. Earlier this month, local ecommerce company Travelstart secured US$40-million from UK investors, while VC firm Silvertree Internet Holdings committed US$10-million investment to South African and African startups. "By leveraging knowledge, networks and funding, KNF Ventures will accelerate the growth of strategically relevant South African scale-up companies and generate enhanced...

  • Mobile tech agency Click Labs opens SA office

    In the last two years, South Africa has really witnessed an influx in mobile tech. From micro-jobs to on-demand courier services and more. Now, to in on the action, international tech agency Click Labs has announced its entry into the country. Founded in India, Click Labs is a mobile app development company with a mission to provide tech solutions around the globe. In a span of three years, the company has grown to a team of 120 members. Click Labs Africa is in line with the company’s vision to have presence in 30 countries across the world in next five years...

  • Singularity University invites SA innovators to enter Global Impact Competition

    Do you have an innovative idea that could positively change the lives of millions of people in your country and the world? Well, this might be your chance to do just that. Silicon Valley's part university, part think-tank, part business-incubator, Singularity University is on the prowl for South African talent. In a partnership with Rand Merchant Bank (RMB), a division of FirstRand Bank Limited, Singularity University invites local entrepreneurs, leaders, scientists and engineers to apply for its Global Impact Competition, and stand a chance to travel to Silicon Valley. According to a recent press release sent to Ventureburn, RMB chief executive...

  • French insurance giant buys into African ecommerce in $83m deal

    French insurance giant AXA has bought an eight percent stake in Africa Internet Group (AIG), one of the continent's largest ecommerce players. The deal is valued at €75-million (over US$83-million). According to Forbes, AXA will become the exclusive insurance provider for AIG, which includes the Nigerian-based Jumia and other ecommerce operations in Africa. Other AIG services include Kaymu, a leading online shopping community, as well as marketplaces in food delivery, travel, real estate, jobs and cars. Read more: Kenyan Hellofood users can now order KFC, Ocean Basket online “Internet is creating unparalleled opportunities for consumers and businesses in Africa to connect and do...

  • A Day in the Life of: CiTi CEO Ian Merrington [Native Article]

    The Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative (CiTi) is one of South Africa's oldest initiatives dedicated to boost local innovation. Founded in 1998, CiTi has established itself as one of the most renowned hubs for entrepreneurs in Africa by fostering through skills development and incubation services. At the helm of this initiative today is Ian Merrington, who brings with him a wealth of experience in advertising and consulting services. Before joining CiTi, he was Group Financial Director of BBDO SA, a director of Gloo Digital Design and later COO for iKineo, a leading Pan-African customer engagement firm. For the third edition of...

  • Travel booking site Travelstart lands $40m, asserts investor confidence

    Cape Town-headquartered travel booking company Travelstart has secured a whopping US$40-million from Amadeus Capital Partners and MTN, which is an investor in the VC firm. The significant capital injection again reaffirms investor confidence in South Africa as a fruitful market for internet companies -- a space which has seen growing interest within the last year. Founded in Sweden over a decade ago, Travelstart moved to South Africa in 2009 to focus on the growth of emerging markets. The online service today provides two million travellers in 16 countries with real-time access to thousands of flights. It operates in 16 countries,...

  • Vox buys out SA cloud marketing outfit Everlytic

    One of South Africa's leading telcos, Vox, has just acquired a majority stake in local cloud communications startup, Everlytic. The buyout comes in the wake of impressive growth by Everlytic over the last few years. “The addition of Everlytic completes our portfolio of products and solutions that allow customers to communicate via any delivery channel -- email, fax and SMS. They also add significant intellectual property (IP) in campaign management and success that we are keen to leverage,” says Jacques du Toit, CEO of Vox Telecom in a press release sent to Ventureburn. Everlytic started out as a communications agency,...