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Startup news

  • SA startup get\Worth to disrupt online car market

    A Cape Town startup is looking to change the way customers buy and sell cars on the internet, by using machine learning and what it says is a unique payment model. The startup launched its platform last month after trading for six months to gain proof of concept. Get\Worth co-founder Mark Ridgway – a former CEO of TransUnion Receivables – says the company was able to conclude about R20-million in deals through the platform in March. The startup's model is different from other online car dealers such as CarZAR.co.za and WeBuyCars.co.za. "We think this is almost first world. We’ve researched it. No one...

  • Customer Onboarding Global Innovation Challenge seeks fintech startups

    The Customer Onboarding Global Innovation Challenge aims to disrupt customer onboarding and management through collaboration with fintech firms around the world and is presented by financial network platform Matchi along with ATB Financial and KPMG Canada. "ATB believes in reimagining banking and we’re always on the lookout for transformative new experiences to offer our customers," said ATB's MD James Gamage in a press release. "That’s why we’re excited to partner with KPMG and Matchi, to expand our reach into the global fintech community and discover novel new propositions to make banking work for people," he added. Entries for the challenge opened on 29...

  • Afri-Fi takes second place at Mozilla-backed Innovation Challenge

    SA's Afri-Fi has been announced as the runner-up in the Mozilla Equal Rating Innovation Challenge and walks away with USD$75 000 in funding. Afri-Fi is the extension of Project Isizwe which has granted 2.9 million users access to 500MB of free WiFi daily. "The team has proven how their solution for a free internet is supporting thriving communities in South Africa," said one of the jury members, Marlon Parker, the Founder of Reconstructed Living Labs, on behalf of the jury in a press release. "Their approach towards community building, partnerships, developing local community entrepreneurs and inclusivity, with a goal of connecting some...

  • Lidya closes US$1.25-million in Seed Funding

    Fintech platform Lidya has closed a seed funding round of USD$1.25-million, being led by Accion Venture Lab, the company announced. Newid Capital were among several other investors also responsible for contributing to the funding round. The seed stage investment is an Accion initiative which invests capital in innovative fintech startups that either reduce the cost of financial services or improves the quality of financial services for the underserved. "This round of funding and backing from our world-class group of investors is a strong validation of the potential of fintech in Africa and will position the company to be the go-to source of financing for entrepreneurs looking...

  • Hepstar heads to Silicon Valley Plug and Play accelerator

    Cape Town based travel technology startup, Hepstar has been selected to participate in Silicon Valley's Plug and Play accelerator hosted by the Plug and Play Tech Center. The accelerator, which connects various startups to suitable investors as well as invests in over 100 companies every year, made the announcement last month. The company's portfolio includes major companies such as PayPal, Dropbox and Skytree. Hepstar was among the top 20 participants handpicked for the accelerator from more than 1000 global applicants. The company places a strong emphasis on data analytics, e-merchandising, machine-learning and personalisation. "We are really excited about this opportunity. With partners like Turkish Airlines, Carlson Wagolit,...

  • Wirecard AG acquires MyGate Communications

    Payments solution Wirecard has acquired 100% of payment service provider MyGate's shares. "Over the last couple of years we had quite a few companies wanting to acquire MyGate. We were looking for the right payment partner that could help accelerate our strategy across Africa and when Wirecard approached us it became apparent very quickly that they were the perfect fit," said MyGate MD Dan Edmiston in an interview with Ventureburn. Edmiston also commented on whether or not core management staff would still be in place. "All of the management including myself are staying. Our staff are some of the most experienced online payment specialists in...

  • VoguePay takes home the Best Fintech Startup Award

    Payment gateway VoguePay has walked away with the Best Fintech Startup Award at the sixth edition of the Cashless Africa Award 2017 presented by Mobile Money Africa. The event was held at the Ballroom Oriental Hotel in Lagos, Nigeria on 25 March. A number of African and global stakeholders in digital finance attended. VoguePay launched in 2012 with the aim of making online payments and cross-currency payments safer for businesses, traders as well as consumers. With offices in Lagos and the UK, VoguePay also serves clients in three other continents including North America, Europe and Asia. "The awards honour organisations that have made significant contributions to the digital...

  • 9 things we learnt at Startup Grind Cape Town

    The latest Startup Grind Cape Town event took place on Friday, featuring Monique Woodard of 500 Startups. The fireside chat covered a wide variety of topics, such as black entrepreneurs, her personal journey and more. Interestingly enough, the finals of the 500 Startups/Geeks on a Plane Africa pitching competition took place at Startup Grind as well. Here are all the notable quotes and happenings that took place at the event. FinChatBot won US$1000 for pitching competition FinChatBot walked away as the winner of the pitching battle (winning US$1000), with DroneClouds in second place and Mobenzi in third. The other two finalists received...

  • Camscorp launches Ventures Lab accelerator programme

    Private equity group Camscorp, has launched its Ventures Lab programme which aims to accelerate African businesses, helping them expand into foreign markets. "I am very humbled by the support from everyone who has been involved in bringing this programme to life," said Camscorp representative, Sean Ndiho Obedih in a Medium post. Ventures Lab is a three-month programme which will help businesses develop a sturdy product strong enough to create and deepen relationships with international investors. The programme will achieve its goals by providing business with mentorship, access to networks, as well as an investment readiness programme which concludes with a pitch day in London. Selected participants...

  • Bitpesa partners with Bitbond to financially assist SMEs

    Blockchain remittance service Bitpesa has partnered with Germany's Bitbond, a company aimed at connecting investors to SME owners. The partnership aims to improve financial access to SMEs in Africa through cross-border lending by way of blockchain payment processing. By working with Bitpesa, selected applicants who receive funding through Bitbond will now be able to have their loans paid out directly to a mobile money account or a standard banking account. The advantage of this is that loans would be paid out in their local currency to the borrower's preferred payment option. The payment integration service has already gone live in Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania,...