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Startup news

  • Stores use music to boost sales, this startup applies the concept to online retailers

    There’s a clear, demonstrated effect of music on sales performance, with the right kind of tune helping stores significantly increase footfall and influence purchase decisions. Research from Gensler (PDF Link) also shows that the use of music can help businesses create emotional engagement around their product and strengthen their brand. And, as almost every marketer will tell you, consumers buy experiences and products from brands they personally identify with. With so much of the world’s commerce shifting to online channels, why not apply the same principles to internet companies? That’s the niche Israel-based righTune aims to tap into. The startup works...

  • Venture Bus Tour aims to bridge the Cape Town and Johannesburg startup divide

    The Venture Network Big Bus Tour has come and gone, and while it only lasted for three days, there are big things to come from this initiative. Founded by friends Abu Cassim and Wayne Berger, the programme was created in order to bridge the divide between the startup communities in Johannesburg and Cape Town. The plan is to connect startups, investors, and spotlighting players to the VC community. Another point to the tour was to connect with like-minded individuals and to learn from previous success and failures. "Each ecosystem has a unique profile and set of strengths, through collaboration we can draw on the...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [29/03/2016]

    Looking to get into the South African startup scene or scratch up on some of your skills? Well, you’ve come to the right place. There are loads of competitions, networking sessions and workshops happening around South Africa and the rest of the continent (namely Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana) that we’ve rounded up to make your life a bit easier. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences around South Africa, and the greater region. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or...

  • GroTech raises R62m for disruptive tech entrepreneur investments

    Section 12J Venture Capital company GroTech has raised an attractive R62-million in its first round of capital raising for disruptive tech investments. GroTech is looking to invest in entrepreneurs with disruptive businesses. These companies need to be scalable and looking for growth capital in order to disrupt the likes of traditional banking, insurance, and retail industries, among others. In a press release sent to Ventureburn, CEO of GroTech, Clive Butkow, says there is funding ready for businesses, though they want to look at disruptive models within tech. Wealth and management business Cale Capital has invested a significant, though unspecified amount, in GroTech for this...

  • Solar startup The Sun Exchange uses Bitcoin to fund green energy

    Crowd-lending solar energy project startup The Sun Exchange will be using Bitcoin for solar energy investment. This is a first for the Bitcoin industry. Achieved last week, the startup is able to use Bitcoin as a transactional mechanism for investing in a solar energy. The Sun Exchange is now hosting a campaign to solar power a school in Stellenbosch, South Africa. "What makes our platform unique is that investors can finance solar energy using Bitcoin and the electricity generated by the solar installation can be repaid to the investor using Bitcoin wherever they are in the world," says founder of The Sun...

  • Fintech startup Momo raises $28m from Standard Chartered’s VC arm, Goldman Sachs

    Vietnam-based fintech startup Momo today announced it obtained US$28 million in series B funding from Standard Chartered Private Equity and global investment bank Goldman Sachs, which is an existing backer. Launched in 2014, Momo is an ewallet and payments app that allows users to pay online and transfer money to each other digitally. At selected stores, the app can be used for cashless payments. The company also has a physical network of over 4,000 over-the-counter agents where people can remit money and avail of other financial services through Momo. Momo claims to process millions of transactions daily for its over 2.5 million...

  • TED makes first ever investment in SA startup

    This is cool. South African media content startup Eduze has become the first around the globe to receive an investment from TED, the organisation behind the renowned global conference series. Started with the aim of democratising digital content, Eduze is responsible for developing the “Clox”, a localised cloud in a box that’s filled to the brim with rich media content. An HD film can therefore be downloaded within three minutes, and an album within one. No buffering. The device can be installed in hyperlocal areas like your neighbourhood football field or more public areas, from taxi busses and trains...

  • TaxTim gets the funding nod from MMI

    Tax Tim, the online income tax calculator, has reportedly received investment from Exponential, the new innovation unit set up by JSE-listed financial services giant MMI holdings. The new unit launched earlier this week with the aim of seeking out startups that have used innovation to improve people's financial wellness. At this stage, details of the investment are thin on the ground, with neither of the parties having announced it through their official channels at the initial time of writing. Update: Ventureburn has received an official release from MMI, providing more details around the investment. According to the release, the...

  • What’s going on with M4JAM? [UPDATES]

    This is interesting. WeChat users signed up to microjobbing service M4JAM were on Monday greeted with a message telling them to cash out all the money from their wallets before 31 March. Update: Hugo has confirmed that the company is set to close if it cannot find a buyer. The only reason given for the request, is that "M4JAM is in the process of restructuring the business". Update: The announcement has also been sent out on Twitter and Facebook:   M4JAM is in the process of restructuring the business. All jobbers: Please cash out the money in your wallet before 31/03/2016. — Money for Jam...

  • Special Podcast #17: Shafin Anwarsha, Head of Product at Giraffe, talks US$500 000 equity prize

    In this latest Special Podcast episode, Graham van der Made, talks to Shafin Anwarsha, Head of Product at Giraffe, the South African startup that has just won US$500 000 equity prize at the Seedstars World Summit in Switzerland. Since its launch in February 2015, the startup has attracted over 75 000 job seekers. The year 2015 was a good year for South African startups, according to the Southern African Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (SAVCA), the SA venture capital industry represented almost R2 billion in assets under management. Silvertree Capital invested over R20-million in the first half of 2015, but...