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News

  • Startup Grind hosts Yoco’s Katlego Maphai

    Last month, Startup Grind kicked off the year by hosting Lean Iterator co-founders David Campey and Roger Norton. Their latest event, which took place on Monday night, saw Yoco's CEO and co-founder, Katlego Maphai take the stage.  Startup Grind Global Conference In welcoming the crowd, Startup Grind's global community director, Guillaume De Smedt spoke about the Global Conference happening earlier this year in Silicon Valley. "This conference is where over 5000 entrepreneurs from over the world will be congregating to listen to some of the best entrepreneurs in the world," said De Smedt. With tickets being priced at US$500 and US$600 per head, the lineup is promised...

  • New Economy Accelerator announces second cohort of entrepreneurs

    New Economy Accelerator (NEA) has selected 12 entrepreneurs to join its 10-month readiness programme, which commences in February. The objective of the NEA is to find SMEs in SA which could potentially have a large impact socially and environmentally, as well as to provide those startups with the necessary support and development assistance needed to scale successfully. Those selected attended a three-day NEA bootcamp to determine whether or not they make the cut for the programme. The participants were selected for their use of innovative methods to tackle challenges such as nutrition, sustainable agriculture, digital inclusion, renewable energy as well as waste management...

  • South African steps up at top Silicon Valley VC firm

    South African-born Roelof Botha has been promoted to one of the three stewards of Sequoia Capital. Botha joins the stewardship along with current partners Doug Leone and Neil Shen. He takes over from Jim Goetz, who held the position for 13 years. Even though the position brings with it more responsibilities, Botha has been running the U.S. division of Sequoia Capital with Goetz since 2007. Before joining the VC, Botha was the chief financial officer (CFO) at PayPal from 2000 to 2003. He later sat on the board of directors for the likes of YouTube and Evernote, was a business partner in Instagram, and more. He is also...

  • Investment company Arise launches to accelerate banking

    Arise, a new investment company focused on the banking sector, has launched. It is the brainchild of international institutions, Norfund, FMO, and Rabobank, which collectively manage more than US$660-million in assets. "The main objective of establishing this company was to strengthen and develop effective, inclusive financial systems in Africa in order to contribute to economic growth and poverty reduction," said the CEO of Arise, Deepak Malik, in a press release to Ventureburn. "Arise will take and manage minority stakes in Sub-Saharan African Financial Service Providers (FSPs) with the core aim of building strong and stable institutions that will serve retail, small and medium...

  • Local blockchain-based AR game nears funding goal

    A new Blockchain-based augmented reality (AR) mobile game, made in South Africa, looks well on its way to meeting its crowdfunding target. Michael Deon and Kyle Haffenden pitched their Augmentors game on the Shark Tank TV show last year, with venture capitalist Vinny Lingham getting on board. Deon and Haffenden created a 30-day crowdfunding round for the Android and iOS game, in the form of an initial coin offering (ICO), hitting half of its US$1-million target in 24 hours. The campaign saw its biggest backers coming from the USA, Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, Slovakia, Norway, Romania, Netherlands, Canada, and China. The crowdfunding campaign...

  • Kickstart your startup with Swiss accelerator

    Swiss technology accelerator Kickstart Accelerator, an initiative of digitalswitzerland, has opened applications for its second international startup accelerator. The accelerator is inviting startups from around the world and will shortlist 30 companies, all of whom will participate in an eleven-week programme. Kickstart Accelerator is looking for startups in the food, fintech, smart cities, and robotics and intelligent systems sectors, and is partnering with BaseLaunch to facilitate healthtech companies. Applicants will need to have a business that has the potential to disrupt its given sector. According to a press release sent to Ventureburn, "Kickstart will not be taking any equity from the participating startups". Instead, the participants will have a...

  • Sasfin Bank, Xero to provide direct bank feeds for SMEs

    Financial service group, Sasfin Bank has partnered with online accounting software provider, Xero to aid SMEs through SA's first direct bank feed. Any Sasfin Bank customer using Xero will have the ability to automatically import as well as categorise any bank statements. This saves businesses time by removing the need to make manual uploads and downloads, allowing better visibility of their cash flow. "Sasfin Bank is proud to be the first South African bank to offer direct feed integration into Xero. Our innovative banking platform is significantly enhanced by the Xero functionality," said executive director at Sasfin, Michael Sassoon in a press...

  • m.Labs partners with major hubs across East-Africa

    Startup accelerator m.Labs has announced a partnership with major tech hubs that support SMEs within the digital and ICT sectors across East Africa. The partnership is in preparation for the Traction Camp Programme, a six-month regional acceleration programme which aims to provide startups with sufficient skills and knowledge to scale their business. Traction Camp will aim to provide startups with the ability to be global competitors, as well as to become growth-orientated business within the mobile and digital markets. The programme, supported by the World Bank Group's Infodev initiative, will collate the best entrepreneurs and startups across East Africa to attend the Traction Camp...

  • Techstars 2017: an accelerator by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs

    The Barclays SA acceleration programme, Techstars, has opened applications to up-and-coming entrepreneurs looking to scale their innovative startups in Africa and abroad. The 13-week programme set to begin 9 May 2017, at the Rise fintech hub in Woodstock Cape Town, and will put 10 startups through their paces fitting in 12 months of work into three. Startups selected for the programme will have an opportunity to learn, as well as expand their presence within the African continent via Barclays Africa Group's customers, technology teams and products. They'll also have a chance to scale on a global level through the various Rise sites situated...

  • Chivas Regal announces 10 finalists for The Venture pitching show

    Whisky brand Chivas Regal has announced the 10 SA contestants taking part in its social entrepreneur pitching competition, The Venture. It will air on Mzansi Magic on 26 January at 6:30pm. The aim of the competition is to invest US$1-million in startups that create positive change. "Over the last two years, we have shown our belief in and commitment to this philosophy by awarding USD2 million to start-ups globally that 'do well by doing good', because we believe purpose and profit can coexist," says Marketing Manager of Scotch Whiskies at Chivas Regal, Shelley Reeves, in a press release to Ventureburn. The winner will receive R350 000...