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Startup news

  • HiiL justice accelerator opens call for innovative entrepreneurs

    The Hague Institute for Innovation of Law's (HiiL) justice accelerator is calling all entrepreneurs looking to grow and innovate the SA justice system to apply to join the initiative. Applications for the accelerator close on 30 June and HiiL will be hosting pre-events in Maboneng, Johannesburg tomorrow (9 June) as well as Workshop 17 in Cape Town next Thursday (15 June). The accelerator is looking for lawyers, civil activists and technologists with innovations that could improve the way the law operates within South Africa. Aside from backing innovative ideas, the accelerator is also aiming to build its current network of law...

  • Joburg health platform Guidepost one of 20 new companies Endeavor to boost

    Two South African entrepreneurs are among 28 business owners from 15 countries that Endeavor, a global non-profit organisation that backs high-impact entrepreneurship, recently welcomed into its fold. Graham Rowe and Richard Johnson (pictured above, left and right, respectively), of Joburg-based company Sancreed, were selected by Endeavor along with 19 other companies from around the world at the 71st International Selection Panel held between May 15 and 17, 2017, in Canary Wharf, London (see the full list here). With their selection as Endeavor entrepreneurs the two will have access to a worldwide network of successful entrepreneurs, as well as mentoring and the chance to receive investment from Endeavor. Their...

  • Can 12J VC tax incentive create the jobs South Africa badly needs?

    Tim Strang wants to provide spaza shops and wholesalers with a better way to order stock, through an app. He's betting on creating hundreds of jobs for sales agents that deploy the app -- thanks to an investment under a venture capital (VC) tax incentive. His Durban-based company and app, Spazapp is one of a number of firms that venture capital companies (VCCs) have invested in under the incentive, which is administered by the SA Revenue Service (Sars) and falls under Section 12J of the Income Tax Act. It allows investors to get a tax rebate if they invest in a VCC that in...

  • Entersekt concludes multi-million dollar deal

    Cape Town based authentication and mobile-security solutions company, Entersekt announced today that it has concluded a multi-million dollar deal with Rand Merchant Investment Holdings (RMI) and Nedbank Private Equity (NPE). RMI and NPE, through their various startup accelerators and investment hubs such as RMI's AlphaCode and NPE's BoE Private Equity Investments, acquired minority shares of an undisclosed amount in Entersekt. "We are immensely honoured that investors of such a high calibre have endorsed our long-term vision in this way," said Schalk Nolte, Entersekt’s CEO in a press release to Ventureburn. The injection of capital will be used to further expand Entersekt's reach into other markets...

  • Seedstars World calls on all Mozambican startups to enter

    Global startup competition Seedstars World is headed to Mozambique on 14 June. This year, the initiative is calling on startups from across the country, even those residing outside of Maputo, to compete. Seedstars World has received support from Standard Bank and local ambassador UX Information Technologies, among several other entities. "Standard Bank's purpose is Africa is our home and we drive her growth," said Victor Jardim, Head of Personal and Business Banking of Standard Bank Mozambique in a press release to Ventureburn. "To this end, technology is a factor that will play a critical part in changing lives and fulfilling aspirations across the continent...

  • Here are the 11 startups that will pitch at Seedstars World Cape Town

    Eleven startups will this Thursday (8 June) compete for a place in Seedstars World's regional final when the global pitching competition kicks off its Cape Town pitching competition at Workshop 17. The regional final will be held at the Standard Bank Auditorium in Johannesburg on 29 June. "The talent we see in South Africa year after year is just amazing, and we are excited to be back to Cape Town for the satellite event," said Seedstars World Africa regional manager Claudia Makadristo in a press release to Ventureburn. "This year, there is a great variety of quality companies tackling real problems in new innovative ways. We might...

  • Investors clamouring for 12J VC incentive following tax hike – fund managers

    The increase in the top marginal income tax rate to 45% for high earners is driving more South African investors to seek out the 12J venture capital (VC) incentive to offset their taxable income, say fund managers. Under the incentive, which is managed by the South African Revenue Service (Sars), investors that invest in venture capital companies (VCCs) that in turn invest in qualifying small enterprises, can write off the full investment made in any one year from their taxable income. In February in his Budget speech then Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announced a new top tax rate of 45% for individuals earning...

  • AfriLabs welcomes 11 new hubs to its Pan-African network

    AfriLabs, a network of over 50 technology innovation hubs on the continent, has announced the addition of 11 new incubators and accelerators. In an announcement last week AfriLabs head secretariat Anna Ekeledo said the organisation is constantly looking to partner with tech hubs and other stakeholders of technology-related businesses to develop better-enabling policies, access to the right tools, environment and finance to scale in Africa. A key aim of AfriLabs, which was set up in 2011, is to create an ecosystem of major hubs to support the development of startups across the African continent. The 11 new hubs joining the AfriLabs network are: nHub (Nigeria) -- According...

  • City of Cape Town considering 17 proposals from entrepreneurs to tackle water crisis

    As the City of Cape Town brought further water restrictions into effect on Wednesday (1 June), a city councillor has revealed that her office has so far received 17 enquiries and proposals from entrepreneurs looking to offer water-saving solutions to the city. In an emailed response on Friday to an enquiry from Ventureburn, Councillor Xanthea Limberg, mayoral committee member for informal settlements, waste and water services and energy, said however that the city is not at liberty to share their personal information. "We are currently looking into all of these proposals," she added. Ventureburn understand however that one of the enquiries is from 25-year-old Grant Vanderwagen who...

  • Startups to take 1GIANTleap from idea to concept in 12 weeks with new programme

    Want to get help developing your new business idea? Startups have until this Monday (5 June) to apply to the 1GIANTleap programme which aims to help entrepreneurs to leap from idea to proven concept in just 12 weeks. The 12-week programme, an initiative of business support organisation Edge Growth, takes place from 8 June in Johannesburg. The programme, which was first run in 2014, begins with a selection process where entrepreneurs are tested on various qualities, business ideas, personal circumstances and their commitment to serving customers both online and offline. "One of the risks you run as an entrepreneur is to create something...