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Startup news

  • HealthQ: groundbreaking African startup launches, attracts funding, blows minds

    When we broke the story about HealthQ's open source metabolic chamber -- the first of its kind in the world -- we came away solemnly impressed by what a group of entrepreneurs from Stellenbosch, South Africa, managed to pull off on a limited budget. After its official unveiling today, we are now privy to HealthQ's impressive investor roster and how the metabolic chamber fits into HealthQ's plans. We knew that WooThemes co-founder Adii Pienaar was an investor, and that venture capital fund 4Di Capital was involved. Shortly after wealthy mining family, the Oppenheimers, invested in 4Di Capital’s venture fund for...

  • Ex-Mxit boss admits IM startup 2go is a threat

    The South African tech scene is quite abuzz with news of Alan Knott-Craig and post-Mxit information. In a recent Memeburn article, some insight was given into his time and the mobile social network and why it came to an abrupt end. Now, in a video interview discussing a post-Mxit life and how Africa's supposed largest social network fitted into his own company, World of Avatar, the former CEO has admitted that small instant messaging startup 2go could be a threat to Mxit. 2go is a startup based in South Africa that currently boasts just over 10-million active users...

  • Enterprise social media startup WyseTalk secures $1M funding round

    Social media for enterprise startup, WyseTalk, has secured first phase funding in excess of $1 million from an investment consortium comprising high nett worth individuals from South Africa, Europe and the United Kingdom. WyseTalk was developed by Alacrity Technologies and launched in October 2011. The transaction, facilitated by local venture capital firm Clifftop Colony, sees a shift in shareholding as Alacrity Technologies divests to focus on its core financial services and retail business. WyseTalk will now be supported by a group of investors with global tech interests. Speaking on behalf of investors, Sean Emery, Chief Investment Officer at Titan...

  • Socialbakers raises $6m in new round of funding

    Popular social analytics site, Socialbakers has just raised US$6-million in a new round of funding to aid its expansion plans according to the company's website. The company, which was launched in 2009, offers analytics for businesses running marketing campaigns across social media platforms so they are able to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns. The new round of funding comes courtesy of Index Ventures, with additional funding from first-round investors such...

  • Ex Motribe boss starts environmentally friendly online sock shop

    Former Motribe CEO Nic Haralambous is not just taking his share of the profits from the recent sale of the company and travelling the world. Nope, he's starting an ecommerce sock shop. NicSocks, which officially launched today, is an environmentally friendly online sock store that believes "socks are the foundations of style". Haralambous was the co-founder of mobile social network builder, Motribe, which was recently acquired by Mxit for an undisclosed sum. The company was started two years ago with Vincent Maher and was invested in by local venture capital company 4Di Capital. NicSocks began because of Haralambous' passion...

  • London calling: 11 SA entrepreneurs head to the UK

    Silicon Cape, in partnership with Western Cape Provincial Government and the South African Chamber in the United Kingdom takes eleven entrepreneurs to London this week to expand their ecosystem of funders, mentors, partners and peers. “The objective of this trip is simply to give the eleven businesses attending access to people, information and experience that will make their companies even more successful,” says Rob Stokes, chairman of the Silicon Cape Initiative. “We...

  • Online retailer Loot.co.za secures funding from Titan Investments

    In October this year, online retailer Loot.co.za launched enhancements to its site usability and the customer experience -- just in time for the festive season which accounted for 22% of its total revenue in 2011. Today, the eCommerce company, headed up by ex-Kalahari CEO, Gary Hadfield, announced that it has raised a new round of funding from Titan Investments. Titan is a broad-based black economically empowered investment company whose investments include, among others, a shareholding in EOH, Connection-Telecom, wysetalk.co.za, Quadrem Africa, BCX and RainFin.com. Investment Director at Titan Investments, Sean Emery -- also co-founder and CEO of RainFin.com...

  • Mobile payments startup GustPay gets serious about cashless events

    We've been monitoring GustPay, the geo-fenced mobile payments solution for some time now. Earlier this year, it piloted an additional service called "Event Intelligence", a wristband-driven, cashless events service. As the Stellenbosch startup recently held a second cashless event to refine the service, it seems to be serious about pursuing the cashless events market. We now also have more detailed information about how the system works. Around 900 students and Stellenbosch locals were...

  • And the winner of Startup Knight is… Easy2Map

    Easy2Map, the startup that's taking the programming out of creating and embedding Google Maps, was named as the winners of Startup Knight 2012. Byte Orbit will be working with Easy2Map to further develop the solution and mentor the startup into a sustainable, profitable tech startup. Virtual Firehouse, winner of Cape Town's first Startup Weekend and Karma Footprint, who pitched at the newly launched Google for Entrepreneurs, were singled out as runner ups for the competition. The Startup Knight competition saw 15 finalists -- all South African software based tech startups -- pitch their ideas to a panel of judges at the...

  • Nano credit startup MoDe wins Africa stage of IBM Global Entrepreneur

    If you were at Tech4Africa this year, you might already have heard the news. MoDe (Mobile-Decisioning), the Kenyan mobile nano credit startup, won IBM's inaugural SmartCamp in Africa. MoDe's innovative emergency airtime payments solution won over the judges and will now take on competitors in the regional finals of IBM’s Global Entrepreneur of the Year Competition in Sao Paulo in December. IBM will offer support and mentorship to MoDe in the run-up to the competition, as well as exposure to IBM's venture capital and partner ecosystem. IBM's first startup talent scouting foray into Africa adds to the 20 different locations...