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Startup news

  • Rwanda’s Think reveals 4 promising African startups for acceleration

    Rwanda's Think accelerator (brought to the world by mobile network operators Tigo and Millicom), earlier this year called for applications to fill its first batch of African startups. Out of 150 applications, the initiative has finally settled on four exciting tech companies that will be given the chance to scale across the continent. The selected startups have access to US$15 000 in funding, the massive Tigo telecom's networks across the region, mentorship and further training in Kigali, Rwanda. In the announcement, general manager of Tigo Rwanda Tongai Maramba said all the finalists showed tremendous potential: The companies we have selected for Think...

  • SweepSouth sweeps up award at SiMODiSA StartupSA

    StartupSA by SiMODiSA saw on-demand cleaning service SweepSouth named the winner of the conference's Get-Up Start-Up pitch awards last week. Apart from the food, drinks and insightful fireside chats, the event saw 10 chosen South African startups pitch their hearts out in front of a judging panel that included industry experts Vusi Thembekwayo, Vinny Lingham, Justin Stanford, Pontsho Maruping, and Anita Nel. SweepSouth has been awarded the opportunity to go on a two-month long trip to Silicon Valley where it will get the chance to network with various experts and mentors in the industry. The two founders, Alen Ribic and Aisha Pandor,...

  • SnappBox from Snapplify enables rural schools to embrace ebooks

    Ebooks distribution platform Snapplify is venturing into rural areas with the SnappBox distribution hardware solution. The hardware is built especially for rural schools that do not have internet. The technology allows textbooks to be preloaded onto the SnappBox, which can then be shared via intranet in the schools. The SnappBox makes it easier for students and educators to access textbooks and share their own academic materials, which are all synchronised to the cloud. It also allows for eBooks to be downloaded from the internet once, and thereafter shared via the schools' intranet systems. Schools with internet can download ebooks but the SnappBox...

  • Wallettec integrates BitPay for bitcoin PoS integration of SA merchants

    South African Point of Sale (PoS) startup Walletec has announced that it has integrated global bitcoin payment service, BitPay, in an attempt to grow the acceptance of the cryptocurrency in brick-and-mortar retail locations. The blog post stresses that by allowing customers to pay at the PoS, using bitcoin, will increase merchant sales and earnings. It also states that as the currency expands, merchants can earn money on bitcoin sales and save costs by reducing credit card payments. "Wallettec’s mission is to become a single interface point between the PoS or payment solution and any mobile/e-wallet solution," founder of Wallettec, Johan Meyer,...

  • 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...