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  • Airbnb for home dining raises seed funding to build up its global community

    Singapore-based BonAppetour, an ‘Airbnb for home dining’, has raised a seed round worth US$500 000, it announced today. The investment comes from entrepreneur and investor Wong Toon King and telecommunications infrastructure contractor firm Prasetia Dwidharma. BonAppetour helps travellers find local hosts who invite them to enjoy home-cooked meals. It adds an online social layer to having people over for dinner and gives visitors a chance to connect with a local culture through food and hospitality. The startup was founded in 2013 and started building a community in tourist havens across Europe, such as Paris, Rome, and Barcelona. The team curates its...

  • BREAKING: New VC fund hits SA tech space

    The South African venture capital (VC) space is heating up, with the latest entrant, Niveus Ventures, announced on Tuesday. The entrepreneur-led fund is backed by Niveus Investments, a subsidiary of Hosken Consolidated Investments (HCI:Johannesburg), and is aimed at African tech startups looking to go global. According to a press release sent to Ventureburn, the fund will provide entrepreneurs with financing that fills the gap between angel funding of less than R1 million, and capital from listed firms or private equity groups that range between R100 - R200 million, which is typically difficult for a younger business to secure. Heading up the team...

  • Entrepreneurs, investors: innovating and funding startups in SA

    A recent panel, entitled Unleashing Entrepreneurial Innovation in South Africa, at the Road to the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit, yielded some interesting remarks from its participants about SA startups, entrepreneurs, and investors. The panel consisted of moderator Nic Haralambous, founder of Nicharry; Greg McDonald, fund manager at Edge Growth; Ian Merrington, CEO of Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative (CiTi); Antonia Norman, CEO of Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship; Toro Orero, managing partner at Draper Dark Flow. Innovation and copying in SA Haralambous posed the first question to the rest of the panel, asking there are a lot of innovative ideas and if funding...

  • 10 things we just learned about the Berlin startup scene

    Berlin is one of Europe's startup hot-spots and is often held up as an example of the cool and at-ease-with-itself contemporary Germany likes to project. That's all well and good. Being home to large number of startups can give you serious kudos as a city. After all, entrepreneurship is key to building a country's future. But what about the people who work at those startups? What kind of salaries are they earning? How do they feel about the positions they're in? And do they face similar problems to people in other startup hubs around the globe? Well, thanks to a...

  • MoveThisStuff: the startup helping you find the right mover for your budget

    Moving, whether it's down the road or to the other side of the country, can be pretty damn stressful. Quite aside from the pain of leaving somewhere you may have come to regard as your home, there's the hassle of finding movers who'll treat your stuff with respect. One company trying to make the second of those things a little easier is MoveThisStuff. Headquartered in Johannesburg, the startup helps people find movers based on factors including how far they're moving, what kind of stuff they're looking to move, and what kind of movers they're looking for. Once they've put...

  • Entrepreneurs, want a high-funded crowdsourced product? Make a board game

    Over the past decade or so, board games have been making a serious comeback in the mainstream. These aren't your typical Monopoly or Cluedo titles, which is now a cliche to say, but in-depth, strategic, and beautifully crafted products of enjoyment. Looking at the list of most-funded projects on crowd-funding website Kickstarter yields some interesting results. Sure, there's a range of electronics, video games, and even music, but in between those are board games. Those collections of cardboard and plastic tokens can net you a tidy funding amount. You many have an 'original idea' for one; maybe it'll be the next...

  • Internet Solutions launches startup package

    Pan African telecoms service provider Internet Solutions recently announced the launch of IGNITE, a suite of technology solutions specifically aimed at startups. According to a press release sent to Ventureburn, the IGNITE package allows smaller, up-and-coming companies access to ICT infrastructure which rivals that afforded by big business. This infrastructure, it says, includes fast, easy, and affordable access to internet, billing, employee management and communications services. With the right digital tools, we believe that SMEs can be just as efficient, connected and productive as corporates with large ICT budgets, if not more so,” says Tony Koutakis, Executive Head: IGNITE....

  • This app is bringing on-demand home repair to Cape Town

    There's not much you can't get on-demand these days: taxis, take-out, flowers and now -- thanks to freshly launched app -- home repairs. Called getTOD, the app aims to service homeowners looking for a quick, safe and reliable way to find repair serviceman, such as plumbers, electricians or locksmiths. A bid to become an Uber of the home repair space, getTOD claims to connect users with service providers who meet their particular need using location based tracking and supplier availability in real time. This, it says, removes the need to waste time searching the internet or a telephone directory...

  • The importance of using the right formulae to keep your business on track

    Financial statements are often used to judge whether a business is performing well or not, however these numbers alone seldom tell the whole story. Entrepreneurs might be knowledgeable in their chosen field, but may lack the technical skills to fully analyse financial statements. It is therefore crucial to investigate other methods available for analysis of their business. Seeing the big picture While financial statements offer a good picture of past performance, they are not entirely suitable for predicting where the company might be in the future. Because they use historical data, they cannot accurately reflect sudden market changes or illustrate where...

  • Fundamo Diaries — Building real solutions for big clients [Part 2]

    The following article is the second in a series of extracts from South African entrepreneur Hannes Van Rensburg’s upcoming book, Cash In, Cash Out. The founder and CEO of the fintech company, Fundamo, recalls the events that have helped shape the world’s mobile banking industry as we know it as well as those leading up to the company’s exit to Visa for a whopping US$110-million. In this article, Van Rensburg details the events when Fundamo hauled in its first big blue-chip client — the biggest bank in Africa. This was arguably one of the biggest validations in the company’s history. The...