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Startup news

  • Less than month to apply for Solution Space programme valued at R300k

    The UCT Graduate School of Business's Solution Space is offering 15 lucky startups incubation to the value of R300 000 in advisory services, mentorship, and co-working space per startup. Entrepreneurs have just less than a month left to apply to its 2018 Venture Incubation Programme (VIP) winter school based in Cape Town. Applications for the 15 available spots close on 1 July. In addition to the business support, selected startups stand to gain access to MTN APIs, the MTN Service Delivery Platform, as well as access to MTN's technical experts and mentors. The 12-week long winter school, which will start on 3 September and...

  • It was ‘now or never’ says Digest RSA founder on leaving corporate finance job

    For Dhanyal Davidson leaving a successful career in finance and accounting to start a financial literacy platform was a no brainer -- but it still leaves him wondering just what he got himself into. "It was sort of now or never in my mind," says Davidson (pictured above) who founded Digest RSA in June last year. His company -- which offers a free weekday email newsletter which selects, summaries and explains key financial news -- is part of the SA Media Innovation Programme (Samip), from which the company was able to get an undisclosed grant from in January. The $4-million three-year initiative aims to accelerate digital...

  • AppsAfrica opens entries for 2018 Innovation Awards

    Tech portal and advisory service AppsAfrica.com has opened entries for the 2018 AppsAfrica Innovation Awards set to be held on 12 November in Cape Town. Applications close 7 September, with finalists set to be announced on 8 October. The annual awards now in their fourth year, are open to startups and corporates which have launched services in at least one market in Africa, aim to celebrate the mobile and tech innovation on the continent. In addition, gaining global publicity, industry recognition and the opportunity to network with about 300 industry peers, this year's winners will also be invited to Africa Tech...

  • All you need to know about AfricArena’s current open innovation challenges

    AfricArena, the international African startup and investor conference, currently has six challenges that entrepreneurs from across the continent can apply to. Two close this week. So, you better hurry, if you want to apply. Last month AfricArena entered into a partnership with French tech conference VivaTech. The agreement has culminated in the two partnering to run a joint challenge for African startups which will see the top three finalists pitch at the Cape Town summit. Specifics of that challenge have as yet been released. In the meantime, entrepreneurs can apply to the following six challenges which AfricArena has already released details on. Here...

  • SA’s ThisIsMe best regtech at 2018 Benzinga Global Fintech Awards

    South African identity verification and due diligence platform ThisIsMe has won the Best RegTech Solution category at the fourth edition of the recently held Benzinga Global Fintech Awards. Cape Town-based ThisIsMe was selected for its work in bringing more trust into transactions through its enhanced due diligence and authentication services. The startup was placed first in the regtech category ahead of Canadian company iComply, and New York-based 8OF9, respectively. The awards, which this year were held on 15 and 16 May in New York, aim to showcase the world's latest fintech innovations and feature tech giants and major banks like Amazon, Facebook as...

  • ‘Facebook $20k grants via NG_Hub to tackle Nigeria’s innovation gap’ [Q&A]

    A lack of financial instruments is holding back innovation in Nigeria, and Facebook aims to address this by providing $20 000 grants to applicants to its new accelerator, a top Facebook official says. Speaking to Ventureburn following the launch last week of Facebook's NG_Hub, Emeka Afigbo, the social network's head of developer programmes, says while Nigeria has no shortage of "smart people", entrepreneurs, students and innovators battle to get funding to allow then to carry out innovative projects. "That is why we are providing equity-free grants as part of the accelerator programme, to actually free people of the burden of having to rush to build things that they...

  • Nigerian insurtech CompareIN to head to Yale University pitch after winning $150k

    Nigerian insurtech startup CompareIN are heading to Yale University in Connecticut in the US, after winning $150 000 at the inaugural VentureClash Lagos, a pitch competition organised by US-based venture capital firm Connecticut Innovations. The news that ComparedIN had beaten 11 other startups was reported last Thursday (24 May) by Nigerian tech site Techpoint.ng. The Lagos pitching event, held last Wednesday (23 May) was part of Connecticut Innovation's $5-million global venture challenge for early-stage companies. Finalists from around the world will be invited to present in front of expert judges on 18 October at the Yale School of Management. Lending platform Social Lender and online payment startup Amplify were runners...

  • Difficult, lonely being a black woman in sector, says iMed Tech founder

    Despite running running an award-winning medtech startup, Nneile Nkholise still finds it hard and often lonely being a black woman in the sector. "You always have to try and prove the narrative wrong that women, and black women cannot start a successful company," says Nkholise, 27, who is the founder and CEO of Johannesburg-based medtech startup iMed Tech. "You find out (about the doubt) in the questions that they (investors) ask you, they want you to prove your worth and work," she says. Nkholise -- who was one of the speakers at French tech summit VivaTech held last week -- founded iMed Tech...

  • Seedstars in call for Moroccan startups to enter pitching competition

    Do you run a Moroccan-based tech startup? Fancy your chances of coming out tops and winning a trip to Switzerland to meet investors and clinch up to $1-million in equity investment? Seedstars World, one of the leading global competitions aimed at tech startups in emerging markets, in partnership with La Factory, a market for craftsmen and artists, is calling on Moroccan tech startups to apply to pitch on 6 July at an event to be held in Casablanca. In all, 10 seed-stage startups will be chosen to compete on 6 July. It will be the fourth time Seedstars visits Morocco. The winner of the pitch will get the chance...

  • Here are the 20 measures the Tunisia Startup Act aims to promote

    Tunisia's news startup act -- passed earlier last month -- could propel the north African country to become the region's next entrepreneurial hotspot. Here's why. The act (the Tunisia Startup Act) includes 20 measures that aim to encourage entrepreneurship, make it easier to start and end a business, as well as easier to access funding and international markets. The act is structured around five main theme areas. These themes are: defining startups; encouraging entrepreneurship; creation of an environment that allows for the formation and liquidation of companies; access to funding; and access to international markets. The law still needs to be applied to the various measures in...

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