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All posts by Jacques Coetzee

  • 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,...

  • This Google-backed startup from SA is training thousands of coders

    If South Africa is to really become a knowledge economy, it seriously needs to develop the youth's Computer Science skills. That's a no-brainer. But while government and academia have their hands full, creative minds are putting inspiring initiatives in motion to foster the country's next generation of software developers. Hyperion Development is one of these gems. Since it launched in 2012, the Durban-headquartered company has allegedly helped over 8 500 people from six Southern African countries in software development training. "We are fortunate to have the ability to scale this online platform to the point where I don't know everyone's names...

  • Gyft founder Vinny Lingham scores $2.75m for identity protection startup

    South African serial entrepreneur Vinny Lingham has just revealed that his latest startup, called Civic, has raised US$2.75-million in seed funding. Based in Palto Alto, Civic is described as an identity protection service that relies on bitcoin blockchain technology to secure consumer data. "The key thing is that we are offering prevention of identity theft and fraud. The current solutions in the market only clean it up after the fact, with much hassle and losses," Lingham told Ventureburn. Banks and other financial institutions that require Social Security numbers could ping Civic when there is an attempt to open an account....

  • Meet the SA-born chaps who built a Slack for developers

    Chat rooms used to be popular hangouts for cyber dating, gaming and a whole bunch of things. Today, they've undergone a professional makeover. They've become billion dollar communication tools catered for the modern workplace, which is fast-paced, knows no borders and encourages collaboration. "It’s weird that you end up taking a conference call at home and do Amazon shopping at work. Tech today enables you to do anything from anywhere," says Mike Bartlett (pictured top right), one of the founders of a chat collaboration tool, called Gitter. He's talking to me over Skype from his flat in London. I'm sitting...

  • Vault is the SaaS for all your investor relations needs

    The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) encourages listed companies to keep accurate records of all discussions with journalists and investment analysts for future reference. Though, the way most JSE-listed companies communicate with their shareholders and other stakeholders is outdated, costly and inefficient. "Updating information about any given entity to shareholders would typically take a few hours," says Simon Hammerton, co-founder of Johannesburg-based startup Vault. After 10 years of being involved with investor relations (IR), entrepreneurs James and Simon Hammerton realised that there has to be a better way of doing things. This is why they launched Vault, which has shown impressive growth...

  • A Day in the Life of: LulaLend startup CEO Trevor Gosling [Native Article]

    A Day in the Life of... Being an entrepreneur is as tough as it is rewarding. Your career is filled with risks, but also an incredible amount of opportunities. For the second edition of our A Day in the Life of... series, we're following Trevor Gosling, the co-founder and CEO of South African fintech outfit LulaLend. After a good few years in the investment banking space, working for the likes of Rand Merchant Bank and Goldman Sachs, Gosling built his own premium wine and gourmet food venture. The company, 5ounces, as it was called, then got acquired by South Africa's media...

  • Online entertainment startup iROKO closes $19m in deals

    Online entertainment startup iROKO has revealed that it's closed multiple deals totaling US$19-million to beef up the Nigerian company's operations and expand across the continent. The figure is made up of content development and capital funding deals from French media giant CANAL+ and existing investor Kinnevik AB. Launched in 2010 and headed by renowned entrepreneur Jason Njoku (pictured above), iROKO claims to be the largest online distributor of African content in the world. IROKOtv, for instance, claims to be the world’s largest online catalogue of Nollywood movies, with over 10 000 hours of movie and TV content streamed on-demand. “With millions more...

  • SA decentralised communication startup joins Silicon Valley accelerator

    Port Elizabeth, South African-based startup Tuse by Millbug is joining Silicon Valley's Founders Space accelerator programme. Thulisile Volwana, Sabelo Sibanda and Michael Kyazze are behind Tuse, which is described as an Android app that allows people to "create wireless mesh networks using their WiFi-enabled mobile devices". Users are then able to send texts, transfer data and make phone called to other people in their network, without the need of traditional wireless infrastructure or network coverage. Read more: SA tech company launches Vuya solar powered tablet After traveling to Germany, Israel, Palestine, Turkey, Ghana and Nigeria since last year, Sibanda tells Ventureburn that...

  • Former Magento heavyweight boards booming SA fintech startup

    Former VP of Engineering at eBay subsidiary Magento, Ted Pietrzak (pictured right), has joined South African fintech startup Jumo to help develop its ground-breaking system to enable financial inclusion in Africa. The appointment is said to mark the first American platform level CTO to be recruited by an African company. The news also adds weight to the startup's impressive hiring spree, growing its team of seven to over 100 within the last 12 months. Headquartered in Cape Town with an office in Nairobi, Jumo is said to have attracted a concentration of data and technology pioneers from across Africa, including talent from Amazon,...

  • SA accelerator boasts startup success, R65m in revenue generated

    Adding weight to its belief that business growth can be engineered, South African VC firm Knife Capital has just revealed "explosive" results of its second Grindstone accelerator programme. On average, the 12 participating companies collectively grew revenue by R65-million while creating more jobs. The programme follows an already impressive Grindstone 2014 which climaxed in the acquisition of radar startup iKubu by Garmin. Grindstone 2015 had a tough act to follow, no doubt. "The success of our first programme meant that we've now set a precedent for ourselves, and we didn't want to be a once-off hit," said Andrea Bӧhmert of Knife...

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