• BURN MEDIA
    • Memeburn
      Tech-savvy insight and analysis
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

All posts by Stephen Timm: Editor

  • No plans right now for Google to invest in startups says Launchpad Accelerator head

    Google has no plans at present to invest money in the startups it assists through its two-year old accelerator initiative, says Google Launchpad Accelerator programme manager Josh Yellin. "Right now there are no plans to (take equity in startups). I wouldn't say it would never happen, but it's not what we're trying to do right now," said Yellin, speaking to Ventureburn last week in Warsaw, Poland during a graduation event for the programme's fourth cohort. Yellin said Google is rather looking to use the programme -- targets existing growth-stage startups from emerging markets -- to learn from emerging market startup on how it can...

  • Cape Town bottling plant takes on dams crisis by making water from air

    With just months left until Cape Town authorities say the city will run out of water, the city's first bottling plant to make "water from air" is now up and running. Cape Air Water CEO Brendan Williamson said the company, with its unit based at a warehouse in Killarney Gardens, began operating two weeks ago and has already sold a "good few cases". The machine, supplied by Durban company Airwater, produces water from condensation in the air. The Airwater machine can presently produce 700 to 800 litres a day Williamson said the machine can presently produce between 700 and 800 litres a day. He expects to supply mainly hotels and...

  • Cape Town startup Digemy inks deal with pharma company after R2m funding

    Cape Town Startup Digemy has signed an international pharmaceutical company as a client for their white label training app, the startup's co-founder and CEO Kobus Louw said today. The agreement, which Louw said was concluded earlier this month, follows R2-million in funding the startup received in February from Greenwold Capital (which ordinarily invests in real estate) in return for a 25% stake in the company. The startup is based in the city's Durbanville suburb and was launched in November last year by Louw (pictured above, left) -- a former credit risk specialist -- and tech entrepreneur Carl Wallace (pictured above, right). Wallace runs two tech companies at present --...

  • Google drops $50 000 grant for Launchpad Accelerator for fifth cohort

    Google has dropped a $50 000 grant for each startup selected for its fifth Launchpad Accelerator, which starts next month, the programme's manager Josh Yellin revealed yesterday. The programme targets growth stage tech startups and 24 startups will embark on a bootcamp on 29 January 2018 (see the names here). Talking to Ventureburn in Warsaw, Poland during a graduation ceremony for the programme's four cohort (see the list of participants from the fourth cohort here), Yellen said the tech giant aims to reinvest the $50 000 per selected startup (totaling $1.2-million for the fifth cohort) back into the programme to cover the costs of startups attending conferences...

  • Watch these guys — here are the SA startups to look out for in 2018

    Tech startups that focus on solving problems using data analysis top Ventureburn's list for the 12 South African tech firms to watch in 2018 - be they transport, agriculture, transport, or finance. Fintech, will continue to be the hottest sector -- with half the startups on the list hailing from the sector. The list also includes two startups using cryptocurrency as part of their solution. Aerobotics is definitely a startup to watch. This Cape Town based aerial data analytics platform provides analytics for drone users (mainly in the agricultural sector). In November Google revealed that the startup was one of 24 selected to join the fifth...

  • I believe South Africa will sort itself out, says UK angel invested in country

    While many other investors may have been frightened off by South Africa's unstable economic and political environment, UK angel investor Kevin Gaskell says he believes in the country. "I like South Africa. And I believe South Africa will sort itself out," says Gaskell. "I have faith in the long-term." While he admits that he hasn't realised any returns yet on the three South African tech firms he has invested in since 2012, he reckons the country is a good investment bet. "I'd say keep looking at South Africa because it's a thriving centre for technology, there are some good companies around. But you've just got to be...

  • Slow Bitcoin transaction times mean it won’t replace cash – foundation head

    If you thought Bitcoin will rapidly replace cash, think again, says Bitcoin Foundation executive director Llew Claasen. High transaction fees and long confirmation times from the Blockchain will make it difficult to replace cash with the cryptocurrency, said Claasen, while speaking at a Startup Grind Cape Town event last Thursday. “So you’re kind of looking at between 10 and 30 minutes before the transaction cannot be cancelled or reversed," he pointed out. In addition the Bitcoin network can only handle four transactions per second, versus seven on the Ethereum network and 25 000 on the Visa network. There’s no way to stop Bitcoin and that’s not a bad...

  • Bitcoin price mania being driven by market manipulation – foundation head

    Bitcoin is heading towards a dot.com crash and is being driven by a "mania" and "market manipulation", says Bitcoin Foundation executive director Llew Claasen. "The fact that you have a 30% in value of Bitcoin in one day is dangerous," said Claasen yesterday, commenting on the rise of the price in Bitcoin yesterday (7 December). Speaking at Startup Grind event at Workshop 17 in Cape Town, he said there is strong evidence to suggest that some traders are using what he referred to as "tethers" -- a digital representation of the US dollar -- to push up the price of Bitcoin. Tethers were created by...

  • SA’s Wealth Migrate to launch $30m ICO aimed at global property

    South African based global real estate platform Wealth Migrate plans to run an initial coin offering (ICO) early next year, to raise $30-million in an offering that will allow investors to invest in global property portfolios. Speaking to Ventureburn yesterday, the company's founder and CEO Scott Picken said the ICO will allow investors to build "real wealth". "People are getting tired of ICOs with wasteful dreams and want it (the tokens) to backed by something tangible," he said. Picken wasn't able to confirm a date when the ICO will open to investors, but was able to say that the ICO will be run through a...

  • Here are the 40 Gazelles that aim to take a leap in Seda programme’s 2nd cohort

    A company that sources high quality foam and rubber component, a charcoal and briquettes manufacturer, a farming co-operative and a corporate shuttle service -- these are just four of the 40 participants in the second cohort of the South African government's National Gazelles programme. The programme, which is run by the Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda), aims is to grow the value of each of the 40 participating small businesses by 20% over the next three years. The names were announced by Small business development Minister Lindiwe Zulu on Friday (1 December) -- about five months after the second cohort kicked off in June. It...