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  • Call for nominations: Digital All Stars’ top edtech startups

    For Ventureburn's next Digital All Stars piece, we will be focusing on the top edtech startups in South Africa. We are looking for candidates who are using tech, or who are are tech-focused, with education startups. These can range from online courses to teaching kids how to code. Now is your chance to submit whoever you think would fit the criteria. In order to do so, please email editor@memeburn.com with the subject "Digital All Stars edtech startup nomination". The email should include the full name of the candidate, the startup, and a short 'CV' with their accomplishments and why you think they should be...

  • Company Office

    Barclays accelerator announces latest participants in African programme

    Barclays Africa Group and Techstars today released the names of 10 financial-technology (fintech) companies selected to participate in the second Barclays Accelerator programme, powered by Techstars. The successful companies, all focused on providing fintech solutions in Africa, will participate in a 13-week growth acceleration programme at Barclays Africa’s Rise fintech innovation hub in Cape Town from mid-May. The 2017 programme participants are: Flexpay (Kenya), Howler (South Africa), Spatialedge (South Africa), Abe.ai (USA), The Sun Exchange (South Africa), Byte Money (South Africa), Avenews-GT (Israel), FOMO Travel (South Africa), Kapitalwise (USA) and eCOIDA (South Africa). Yasaman Hadjibashi, chief creation officer at Barclays Africa Group, said:...

  • Q&A: WooTheme’s Mark Forrester talks hacking, investment tips & more [update]

    Mark Forrester is easily one of the most well-known startup founders in the SA industry. In 2015, his co-founded website theme builder WooThemes was acquired by WordPress founding company, Automattic for a rumoured US$30-million, which he commented is "off target, it is a good ballpark". Started in 2008, WooThemes grew to 55 staff members across 20 countries by the time it was acquired in 2015. The company also launched shopping plugin WooCommerce, which saw over 7.5-million downloads and active installs at the time. Along his journey, Forrester has co-founded IT solutions company Gravit8, social media aggregator Afrigator, invested in Over and...

  • Y4PT Hackathon series found its Cape Town representative

    International pitching competition Youth for Public Transportation (Y4PT) Hackathon concluded its Cape Town event on 6 March. It focuses on mobility and takes place in 20 major cities around the world. Y4PT was held in partnership with WhereIsMyTransport, the Bandwidth Barn, KAT-O, and Women in Tech. "This hackathon was our first to showcase what can be done with integrated transport data, and the power of an open platform," said the co-founder of WhereIsMyTransport, Devin de Vries, in a press release to Ventureburn. Teams could compete in four categories which included Integrated Mobility, Healthy Mobility, Inclusive Mobility and Future Mobility. The winners from various countries will compete in...

  • Equity investment in SMEs up 108% says PwC’s Accelerator global report

    PricewaterhouseCoopers' (PwC) Accelerator has released a new global report, which focuses on the equity financing market for SMEs. The report was compiled using data based on Pitchbook and World Bank Data, and looked at SMEs from 2010 to 2015. PwC's Accelerator looked at over 52 000 companies that employed under 250 people, over 81 000 known deals under EUR500-million, and over 33 000 equity investors. "The Atlas is a useful reference guide for CEOs of SMEs looking for financing. It helps them to understand the global equity financing market and to identify barriers and enablers at a global, cross-border and regional level”...

  • New infographic focuses on Cape Town as startup capital of Africa

    A new infographic has been released which shows why Cape Town is the startup capital of Africa. The report has been compiled with the efforts of the City of Cape Town, Invest Cape Town, Wesgro, CiTi and Silicon Cape. The data has been compiled from a number of resources, such as the FNB Property Barometer, SAVCA 2015 Venture Capital Survey and World Economic Forum Global Rankings 2016. "The resources clearly show why the Cape is the leading tech hub in Africa. It is because of our skills pipeline, which is unmatched on the continent, combined with the quality of life and infrastructure in the Cape, and...

  • DPO Group to acquire Botswana, Namibia operations of Virtual Card Service

    Online payments service provider The Direct Pay Online Group (DPO Group), has announced the 100% acquisition of the Botswana and Namibia operations of Virtual Card Service (VCS). The complete 100% equity acquisition of VCS's South African operations are still being finalised and will follow at a later date. Ventureburn asked about the financials details of the African deal, though DPO did not want to disclose the amount. "The VCS team have built a leading market position in the Botswanan and Namibian payments landscapes by offering a distinguished suite of services to all organisations requiring automated, high volume and secure card payment processing," says the...

  • Livity Africa, Facebook launch entrepreneurial training programme

    Youth-led NPO Livity Africa, in collaboration with Facebook has launched a digital training programme for entrepreneurs to assist in accelerating their businesses. This partnership between Facebook and Livity Africa expands on the "network effect" of the Digify programme which was launched in SA in 2014 as well as Nigeria and Kenya in 2016. The new development programme will cover three core elements: Digify Prot Startup: A six-week training module for entrepreneurs which helps accelerate the growth of their businesses using digital skills and tools. Boost Your Business: One-day training interventions to assist entrepreneurs with any issues they face. Digify Entrepreneur TTT (Train the Trainer): Is...

  • Seed Academy launches ‘State of Entrepreneurship’ survey

    The Seed Academy has opened up its survey The State of Entrepreneurship in South Africa - The Entrepreneurs View to all SA entrepreneurs to help portray an honest perspective of the entrepreneurial landscape. According to the incubation and funding programme, the survey came about due to high unemployment rates and poor growth related to the current economy. Survey participants could stand a chance to be a part of a one-on-one session with some of SA's leading entrepreneurs. The lineup for the one-on-one sessions includes Gil Oved, Miles Khubeka, and Ian Fuhr. This year, the survey expands the scope and focus from startups to entrepreneurs. According...

  • Reunert acquires majority interests in tech SMEs

    Technology group Reunert, which manages a portfolio of ICT-related companies among electrical engineering and applied electronics firms, has added two more companies to their portfolio. Reunert's first acquisition is a 51% stake in Terra Firma Solutions. The company aims to be a leader in the turnkey energy engineering solutions sector. Their speciality lies in serving predominantly industrial and commercial sectors within SA. According to Terra Firma, the company has already installed numerous rooftop solar energy systems with more than 800 sites covered under their remote energy and water management solutions. Reunert's intention to have a majority stake in Terra Firma was so that the company...

  • Mama Money expands to three more African countries

    Fintech remittance startup Mama Money, has announced aggressive expansion plans into Mozambique, Malawi, and Kenya by April. It has already expanded into Nigeria, Ghana, and Tanzania. The company started off as a money transfer service from SA to Zimbabwe, but has since expanded to include 650 Mama Money agents and 32 000 cash points for consumers to utilise. "In Zimbabwe, through Mama Money’s integration with financial institutions, we are reaching six million mobile wallets and two million bank accounts," says co-founder of Mama Money, Raphael Grojnowski, in a press release to Ventureburn. It has partnered with entities in different countries, such as 25 of the largest banks and mobile...