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All posts by Staff Reporter

  • Six African startups selected for GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund

    Six African startups have been selected for the third cohort of the GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund. The names of the six companies were announced last Wednesday (12 December) in a post by GSMA's Mobile for Development Utilities and Ecosystem Accelerator head Max Cuvellier, along with those of five other startups -- from Indonesia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Sri Lanka. The African startups hail from Benin, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Kenya and Ghana. The six are: agritech and mobile financial services startup AgroCenta, Ivorian mobile-supported plastic recycling solution Coliba, Yaounde-based healthtech GiftedMom, edtech Eneza Education, medical identity solution KEA...

  • SA fintech startup takes second place at Techcrunch Startup Battlefield Africa

    Ahead of its expected launch to market next year, SA fintech startup Bettr last week scored a major victory -- by being placed second at TechCrunch Startup Battlefield Africa. The event -- which was held in Lagos, Nigeria last Tuesday (11 December) -- saw 15 startups square off against each other in a pitching session (see this Techcrunch story for more). The pitch was won by Ugandan startup M-SCAN who took home a $25 000 equity-free cash prize and a trip for two to TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco 2019. M-SCAN has invented a mobile ultrasound that is portable and compatible with basic devices, including a...

  • PIC, UIF partner to launch R2bn fund for startup companies in SA

    The SA government on Friday (14 December) launched a R2-billion fund to help small business startups that create jobs and contribute towards the growth and development of the economy. SANews reported on Friday that fund is part of the Project Development Partnership Fund (PDP) -- established through a joint venture between the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), an entity of the Department of Labour. While the fund won't exclusively be aimed at tech startups, but rather at all small business startups in general, the Minister of Labour Mildred Oliphant (pictured above) revealed that the fund will invest...

  • Gauteng’s Innovation Hub gets new head

    Pieter Holl is the new CEO of Gauteng government's Innovation Hub. Holl, who was officially appointed last month, replaces McLean Sibanda and was the Acting CEO from June to last month. In a statement last month, the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency and members of the Innovation Hub's board, welcomed Holl into his new position.   Prior to joining The Innovation Hub, Holl was the deputy director-general responsible for business regulation and governance at the Gauteng Department of Economic Development, a position he held for eight year. Before joining The Innovation Hub, Holl was the deputy director-general responsible for business regulation and...

  • Here are the five winners of the 2018 Ventureburn Tech Startup Survey

    Ventureburn is proud to announce the five startup founders and startup employees who have been randomly selected as prize winners after completing the 2018 Ventureburn Tech Startup Survey powered by Telkom Futuremakers. The results of the survey were publicised last month.  Those who completed the survey, stood the chance to win one of five prizes, namely: an iPhoneX, a Telkom Business in a Box Supreme solution, a one-year subscription to Ventureburn’s press release service for their startup, two cases of Jordaan’s Montegray wine and an exclusive mentoring session with legendary venture capitalist Keet van Zyl. Five participants from the 2018 Ventureburn Tech Startup Survey walked away as winners There were...

  • Sawari Ventures announces $35m first closing of $70m North Africa fund

    Egyptian venture capital firm Sawari Ventures yesterday (9 December) announced a $35-million first closing of its $70-million Sawari Ventures North Africa Fund I (SVNFI). The Cairo-based VC firm made the announcement on the sidelines of the last day of the Africa 2018 Business Forum in Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt. In a statement yesterday (9 December), Sawari Ventures stated that it aims to use the fund to invest in tech and knowledge-driven companies in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. The fund's first closing investors include the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Dutch Good Growth Fund which is managed by impact-focused investment manager Triple Jump, the French Development...

  • Endeavor SA to host International Selection Panel in Stellenbosch this week

    A number of SA entrepreneurs are in the running to join the prestigious club of Endeavor that supports high-impact entrepreneurs around the world -- with the non-profit's SA office set to host its 84th International Selection Panel (ISP) in Stellenbosch from tomorrow (11 December) to Thursday (13 December). Through the ISP, Endeavor aims to identify innovative and driven entrepreneurs from across the world who are committed to building big businesses that have a positive economic impact. At the ISP, business leaders interview entrepreneurs about their businesses, evaluating them on their fit with Endeavor and their growth potential. Once selected, Endeavor entrepreneurs gain access to comprehensive customised services,...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [9/12/2018]

    The two biggest startup events this week are Seedstars Africa Summit on Thursday (13 December) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and TechCrunch's Startup Battlefield Africa on Tuesday (11 December) in Lagos, Nigeria. Tied to TechCrunch Startup Battlefield Africa, Facebook will host a number of events during the week. These include: Aspiring Entrepreneurs — Digital Pitch Competition (10 December): Winners from seven Nigerian states who participated in the Aspiring Entrepreneurs Digital 2018 programme will pitch their businesses to a panel of judges for a chance to win support and prizes from Facebook and Fate Foundation. NG_Hub Start-up Mixer (10 December): A social gathering...

  • Egyptian healthtech Vezeeta does it again with $1-million raise from the IFC [Updated]

    Egyptian healthtech startup Vezeeta has raised a new, $1-million investment from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of World Bank Group -- less than three months after closing a $12-million Series C funding round led by Saudi-based STV. Vezeeta has developed one of the Middle East and North Africa’s (MENA) largest healthcare booking platforms and medical practice management software. Egyptian startup publication Menabytes reported today that the deal is the IFC’s first direct investment in an Egyptian technology company. The publication quoted Vezeeta CEO and co-founder Amir Barsoum (pictured above) saying that the “IFC is a global power that will not only help fuel...

  • Kobo360 lands $6-million equity investment from World Bank’s IFC

    The IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has announced a $6-million equity investment in Nigerian tech startup Kobo360. The startup's e-logistics platform helps connect the supply of trucks with the demand for transportation services by cargo owners in Nigeria. Today's announcement follows a $1.2-million seed round led by US venture capital firm Western Technology Investment that the startup announced in June, while earlier this year the startup was accepted into Y-Combinator’s 2018 Summer cohort, and received a $120 000 equity investment from the seed fund. Nigeria logistics startup Kobo360 has landed a $6-million equity investment from the IFC The IFC said in a statement today that the investment was led by...

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