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Startup news

  • Vinny Lingham’s Gyft launches, is TechCrunch Disrupt finalist

    Back in April we gave you an exclusive peek at ex Yola chief Vinny Lingham's new startup Gyft. Now you can try it out yourself following the social gifting service's launch at TechCrunch Disrtupt San Francisco. Lingham, who started Gyft after resigning as CEO of his successful website builder and hosting service Yola, officially announced the launch on his blog. According to the South African-born entrepreneur, the company also "confirmed for the first time that we raised our financing from Google Ventures, 500 Startups, Founder Collective (and more)". Gyft is a mobile gift card app that allows users to store,...

  • Beauty subscription startup rubybox receives funding from HPV Africa

    Rubybox, the innovative, try-before-you-buy beauty subscription startup, announced that it has received funding from venture capitalist Hasso Plattner Ventures Africa, for an undisclosed sum. As part of the investment, rubybox is acquiring GlamBox SA, its major current competitor in the local beauty box market, making rubybox the dominant player in South Africa. “We are thrilled about the investment as we’re certain it, together with our 360 degree approach that pairs trial and education which leads to re-purchase, will help us grow rubybox to be the leading content-driven eCommerce beauty site in South Africa,” says Sylvia Gruber, rubybox co-founder and CEO. Ventureburn...

  • Virtual Firehouse wins Startup Weekend Cape Town 2012

    Virtual Firehouse walked away with the honours from this year’s Startup Weekend Cape Town following a frenetic 54 hours in which entrepreneurs and innovators gathered to pitch and develop their business ideas in the hope of creating the next big thing. Startup Weekend is a global initiative which started in 2007 in Colorado, USA and over 500 events have been held in 90 countries to date. It was hosted in Cape Town for the second year running. Winners in the competition are provided with support from mentors, funders and industry giants such as Microsoft and Google. This year’s event took place...

  • Virtual tax assistant TaxTim now speaks Afrikaans, isiXhosa and isiZulu

    Ventureburn recently wrote about TaxTim, the approachable, virtual tax assistant who helps South Africans complete their tax returns by asking simple questions, in plain English. Starting today, TaxTim will be able to converse in Afrikaans, isiXhosa and isiZulu as well. "Despite only 8.2% of South Africans speaking English, SARS continues to provide help in this language only, ignoring the other 10 official languages. We are delighted to announce that TaxTim has now made...

  • Silicon Cape to offer startups a chance to ‘Pitch London’

    This is very cool. South African-based entrepreneurial initiative Silicon Cape is leading a trade mission of 10 startups to London to pitch their ideas and raise capital from UK-based investors. The trip is open to any startup looking to expand beyond South Africa's borders, and that thinks it could benefit from UK investment. According to the Silicon Cape, it's organizing the mission in a bid to: Get local startups in front of...

  • A Kickstarter project worth backing: The Startup – a comedy film about startups

    The team behind a new startup comedy set in present-day San Francisco, is utilising Kickstarter to bring the project to life. Simply called the startup, the film bills itself as comedy-drama and aims to show the "the many, ever-changing sides—from the absurd to the sublime, but mostly the hilarious—of life inside an early-stage startup." The project is gaining traction. With 26 days to go, 52 backers have pledged a total of US$11 565 towards the goal of US$25 000 which will allow for a 30-45 minute film. The team is shooting for US$95K however, in the hope of creating...

  • Pitch it. Work it. Launch it: Startup Weekend returns to Cape Town

    Getting a business off the ground takes time, dedication and the occasional bit of sweat and blood. You should be able to pack that all into fifty-four hours right? That's how long people will have to pitch, work and launch their business ideas at Cape Town's second Startup Weekend. These high-pressure events have been a staple of Silicon Valley for some time now, but are relatively new to the South African scene....

  • Bring the social online news room to your business with Pressat

    This is very interesting. Let's say your business has successfully expanded into the UK with some help, and you're ready to let the market know about your product. What's the best way to get the word out? Good question. May we suggest having a look at Pressat, a press release distribution and online publishing service. To start, Pressat -- developed by Manchester agency Atmedia -- will take your press release and distribute it to targeted media outlets across the UK. For a flat fee of £50, your press release is assigned to a member of the Pressat editorial team,...

  • 22seven gets ‘more nimble’ with new update

    Online personal finance management service 22seven has received a massive update that, according to the company, makes it "more nimble and adds some of the things customers have been asking for". With the updates, you can: Categorise your transactions differently: When you click on a transaction all of its details will pop up on a card. 22seven claims it's an easier way to "put transactions in their place". Split your transactions: This...

  • Mxit Money: new mobile money service from Africa’s largest social network

    What’s the future of banking? Well we know that in the future our mobile phones will replace money, and even our credit cards. Why? Because this is the device that is with us all the time and is always connected. But who is going to make this play? The banks? The cellphone operators? The phone manufacturers? Or a mobile social network? Mxit is taking mobile money and payments quite seriously. Earlier this year the popular instant messaging service rolled out a payment option to restaurants, allowing users to pay for meals using the platform. More recently the service launched...