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Startup news

  • SEC ban puts brakes on equity crowdfunding in Nigeria – report

    The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Nigeria's ban on equity crowdfunding "is seriously slowing down" the introduction of crowdfunding in the country, says a new report. The Crowdfunding Potential for Nigeria report released last month by the Crowdfunding Hub, says crowdfunding has significant potential in the country, but that the SEC's ban issued in August last year has stifled the setting up of crowdfunding platforms. The SEC believes that crowdfunding cannot be effective in Nigeria for now because of a lack of rules. Donation and reward-based crowdfunding are however excluded from the SEC’s regulatory remit. This is despite a fast-evolving banking system which...

  • Dubai authority opens call for fintech startups to join acccelerator

    The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is calling for applications for its Fintech Hive. Applicants have until 28 May to apply. The 12-week programme aims to accelerate startups within the early and growth stages by providing them with insights and exposure to top financial institution executives. Selected participants will have the opportunity to develop and test their products and solutions in collaboration with senior financial representatives. These include representatives from the DIFC Authority, Accenture, Citi, HSBC, Standard Chartered, Visa, Emirates NBD, and Mashreq. "The FinTech Hive at DIFC will connect innovators in financial services technology with the banks, financial institutions and service providers within our dynamic ecosystem...

  • ‘Fintech startups in Middle East, North Africa raised $100m last decade’

    Fintech startups in the Middle East and North Africa have raised $100-million over the last decade, yet 28% fail in their initial years, says a new report by business support organisation Wamda and online payment gateway Payfort. Released last month the report, titled State of Fintech: Unbundling the financial service sector in MENA, estimates that about $50-million in investments are expected to go to fintech startups in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region this year. The region was home to 105 fintech startups by the end of 2015 (see featured image), with half of these having been launched since...

  • University, science council spinoffs climbs to 45 startups, finds survey

    The number of startups spun out of SA science councils and universities climbed from 29 to 45 between 2008 and 2014, following the implementation of a new IP law in 2009, a report released this week revealed. The SA National Survey of Intellectual Property (IP) and Technology Transfer at Publicly Funded Research Institutions, which was released yesterday by the Department of Science and Technology, noted that some progress had been made since the Intellectual Property Rights from Publicly Financed Research and Development (IPR) Act came into effect in 2009. The act aims to get publicly-funded research institutions such as universities and...

  • Mastercard’s Start Path is searching for innovative startups

    Global payments company Mastercard is searching for new startups to join its Start Path Global 2017 Class. Applications for the programme close on 23 April. The programme is accepting startups from SA as well as across the world who are operating within the banking and payments sector. Eligible startups need to have raised significant seed funding or series A investments. Other criteria for eligible startups are: Startups must demonstrate advantage over competitors. Participants must target a sizeable market opportunity. Eligible startups must have established an experienced team. Mastercard's Start Path aims to provide innovative startups with much-needed support and investment "Fintech startups around the world...

  • French South African Tech Labs now recruiting

    Having received a combined R10-million in investment since its launch last year, the French South African Tech Labs (FSAT Labs), in Cape Town, is seeking its first cohort of digital entrepreneurs. Applicants have until 15 April to apply. The FSAT Labs has served as an incubator and accelerator for both SA and French entrepreneurs, placing a strong emphasis on black entrepreneurs. FSAT Lab COO Alexia Vettier told Ventureburn that the French government is helping the FSAT Labs through the French embassy as well as the French tech network. "Indeed, Cape Town has become a French tech hub since 2016 thanks to Methys, a French private company, that...

  • IDC approves R17m deal to fund SA’s first 3D metal printer

    The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has concluded an agreement with an SA startup that plans to launch the country's first production-based 3D metal printer by June. The investment of R17-million in Metal Heart, approved last month, is the 11th deal concluded by the IDC's new industries unit, since the unit's launch in 2015. Six of the deals have been in new companies. "They moved quickly," says Gert Lombard, who says he and business partner Kim Gray initially met with the unit in November last year. The deal was approved two weeks ago. The investment is in the form of a term loan and a...

  • Entersekt wins Best Mobile Security Technology Award

    Security solution Entersekt has clinched the award for Best Mobile Security Technolgy for the second time at the 2017 Banker Africa Southern Africa Banking Awards. Entersekt uses an innovative push-based authentication solution along with digital certificate technology to protect customers from online fraud. The awards programme is open to all banks and financial institutions within SA and celebrates outstanding performance within the financial services industry. "We are particularly pleased to have been recognised for the work we do in the fintech space. As an innovator in push-based authentication and app security, it is important for our peers to acknowledge the evolution and relevance of our products and services," said Entersekt's...

  • Exclusive: ‘Government won’t match private sector in R1.5bn SME fund’

    The SA government has no immediate plans to match the R1.5-billion that 48 large companies have committed to the SA SME Fund, National Treasury Director-General Lungisa Fuzile told Ventureburn today. Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa pledged during the launch of the fund in May last year that the government would match any contribution made by the private sector. However Fuzile, who sits on the fund's board, said the government will instead look to improve coordination between the state and private sector, while stepping up its existing funding and business support to small businesses. "It is not clear from a fiscal point of view...

  • RiseUp takes 6 startups to Silicon Valley

    Startup network, RiseUp took six startups to Silicon Valley from 4 April to 13 April. The programme exposes startups from the Middle East and Africa to the tech hub, allowing them to integrate with other startups, resulting in acceleration and growth. The programme is organised in partnership with Voyaj and TechWadi as well as the World Bank. "We cater an experience where startups have an opportunity to get exposed to new markets, connect with global industry leaders, network with investors, the global media, and most importantly gain know-how that will help them build better businesses," said RiseUp's founder, Con O’Donnell in a press release. RiseUp aims...