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Startup news

  • Mapped in Cape Town gives us insightful snapshot of city’s startup scene

    This week Mapped in Cape Town- an initiative aimed at mapping the startup ecosystem in Cape Town -- went live. The map is not a work of a cartographer but that of Cape Town-based tech entrepreneur Rowan Polovin. As you can imagine, the website is a map, falling within the traditional descriptions of what a map ought to be but instead of hospitals, schools, roads, it shows the position of startups, investors, co-working and Wi-Fi hotspots within the city. It also contains a brief description about the startups listed. Listings are free of charge. Explaining the concept, Polovin tells Ventureburn that inspiration...

  • Property management startup PropCare secures R300k on Dragons’ Den

    After pitching to a panel of renowned judges, South African property management startup PropCare has secured a R300 000 funding round from the investors on entrepreneurial reality show Dragons' Den. PropCare is an app that provides a platform for property owners to find reliable, user-rated, locally-based property service providers. From garden maintenance to handymen, plumbers and electricians, people can easily find quotations and confirm bookings. “I’ve been a real estate agent for over 10 years and I started PropCare because I saw that my customers struggled to find reliable service providers in their areas. They used to call me...

  • SA’s edtech startup Brighter Futures offers online math tuition for R50

    South Africa's elearning startup space is growing bigger (and brighter) by the day. Recently launched online tutoring service Brighter Futures joins the race to quell the country's ever pressing education issues. In 2013, the Department of Basic Education reported that only 26.1% of candidates who sat for the mathematics matric result achieved a pass mark of 50% and above. This fueled a chant that all South Africans have come to know too well. The education system is in crisis, it goes, and then further, we demand government to do something about it. And that is the end of it. Very...

  • M4JAM’s next big project? Crowdsourcing recycling

    A little while back we told you about M4JAM, a new microjobbing play looking to make the most of South Africa's massive mobile penetration rates. Hosted on WeChat, the service -- which gives cash rewards to users for taking part in surveys or completing tasks -- saw some pretty impressive early success. Today the company announced that it's expanding beyond these kinds of tasks and will launch a pilot recycling project being pioneered on the platform in collaboration with Green Office. According to M4JAM, Green Office approached it shortly after launch to place jobs on the platform to pilot...

  • Here are the 10 finalists to pitch at SiMODiSA Startup South Africa

    Flying the banner "Get-Up Start-Up", South African entrepreneurial initiative SiMODiSA will see ten savvy startups pitch at its conference this week Friday. With an exciting diverse group of initiatives -- from solar solutions to education and courier services -- each finalist will get 12 minutes to impress the judging panel which consists of industry experts Vusi Thembekwayo, Vinny Lingham, Justin Stanford, Pontsho Maruping, and Anita Nel. Apart from wooing the judges for investment, the grand prize winner will get the chance to experience the technology boom taking place in Silicon Valley, California where they will get an opportunity to...

  • GoMetro relaunches as SA’s social network of transport

    In celebration of National Transportation Month in South Africa, data and transport startup GoMetro relaunched this week. Apart from the additional social elements, the startup's updated product now include information regarding major bus services like Cape Town's MyCiti and Golden Arrow as well as Johannesburg's Gautrain and Rea Vaya. GoMetro's new app -- GoMetroApp -- is referred to as the Community for Commuters where people provide each other with information including crowdsourced updates about transport in South Africa. Whereas the original GoMetro.co.za provides train delay updates and Metrorail schedules, GoMetroApp.com is designed to work with all major modes of public transport...

  • Uber is bringing its enterprise-like offering to Africa, meet Uber for Business

    Uber is shaking things up with its latest offering Uber for Business. The enterprise space is hotly contested right now and everyone's favourite private driver is digging in for its share. According to the service, it wants to assist businesses with very mobile employees. How? By assisting business travelers to "move with ease and get where they need to go". The new enterprise offering was launched earlier this year in parts of North America and Europe. Uber says that since the launch it has seen "Uber for Business" trips take place in more than 120 cities across 35...

  • Microsoft awards 7 more African startups with Innovation Grants

    Microsoft 4Afrika has announced the second round of startups that will have access to the tech giant's Innovation's Grant, the latest in a series of initiatives we've seen this year as it looks to fast-track African innovation. The grant will help each startup achieve their unique needs whether that be skills, funds or networking. Fernando de Sousa, General Manager of Africa Initiatives at Microsoft notes how critical it is to support Africa's future industry leaders: “The world is looking for the next growth pole and Africa is positioned to be exactly that. As investors assess industries and sectors to fund,...

  • Zimbabwean Wi-Fi startup SaiSai wins SWELL Innovation Award

    Wi-Fi distribution startup Saisai has been announced as winner of the SWELL Innovation Award at DEMO Africa. SaiSai will receive an all-expense paid trip to Silicon Valley as part of the SWELL Innovation Tour, which includes the exclusive participation in SWELL’s intensive soft landing programme in California. The Zimbabwean company provides a bandwidth redistribution wireless mesh network consisting of free access wireless hotspots in public areas, including public transportation. SaiSai explains that many companies have large periods of time when their internet capacity is not being used to full capacity. The startup's technology then uses this wasted data to securely feed extra...

  • Student admin startup Gradesmatch wins Ventureburn Startup Battle

    From B2B recycling through to travel agents and elearning, last week's Social Media Week Johannesburg saw five exciting tech startups go head-to-head for a chance to be crowned the ultimate winner of Ventureburn's Startup Battle. While competition was extremely tough, student administrative startup Gradesmatch was eventually dubbed the winner and walked away with R25 000 sponsored by Ford Motors SA. Apart from the cash prize, the winning company was also awarded a mentoring session with Sage Pastel Managing Director Steven Cohen, as well as some software packages from Sage. Developed by Afri-Acts, Gradesmatch is a mobile system designed to enhance the way in...

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