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  • TrafficButter to launch crowdsourcing app to help solve Nigeria’s road issues

    Traffic's a bitch, we all know that. And anyone who's been to Africa's major cities would tell you no different. The popular Twitter account that keeps Nigerians in the know with their local road news, TrafficButter, and the existing JonnyWaka app are joining forces to develop a community-driven mobile app, officially called Traffic Butter Mobile App. The team hopes to be Nigeria's go-to source for all road information by making significant investments in technology, including tools for more stress free commuting. The app is said to benefit from improved personalization and more interactive road traffic viewing or reporting than...

  • Nomanini secures series-B bringing total capital raised to over R20-million

    Nomanini, the company that delivers physical prepaid vouchers through its little cloud-connected box, has secured an undisclosed amount in series-B funding from Seychelles-based investment company Rockbridge Investments Limited. The latest financing brings the startup's total raised capital to over R20-million -- roughly US$2-million. The funds will enable Nomanini to expand its prepaid platform across Africa and in to other developing countries. In 2012, Nomanini raised US$600 000 in series-A funding from Netherlands based eVentures Africa Fund (eVA Fund) as well as Esther Dyson — the angel investor who sits on the board of companies such as 23andMe, Evernote and...

  • Springlab: a new SA incubator on the block has its sights on sub-Saharan Africa

    There's a new South African incubator on the block and its name is Springlab, and its goal is to "foster entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa" by building highly scalable ventures. Founded by ex-Rocket Internet alum Eugen Petersen (co-founder of Zando) and Sheraan Amod (co-founder of Personera), with the help from strategic advisor Randolf Jorberg, Springlab claims some unique features to separate itself from the incubator pack. First off, Springlab co-founds every single venture it invests in -- taking them right from, as Petersen tells Ventureburn, "the birth to baby steps, until it can run". Working closely with ventures, Springlab will generally invest...

  • GoMetro and MellowCabs partner to make SA cities’ transport smarter

    Two South African tech startups recently announced their partnership to better the country's transportation industry by furthering the idea of smart cities. GoMetro and Mellowcabs will be working together to drive collaboration, awareness and adoption of the two services in major urban areas of South Africa and beyond. GoMetro provides South African commuters using the MetroRail train service with crucial information via their mobile phones. Through this new partnership, GoMetro will provide the eco-friendly taxi service Mellowcabs with a Driver App, running on tablets to be mounted in the cabs. This will track the location of the vehicle with the...

  • TechCabal Battlefield 2014: the top 3 Nigerian startups

    TechCabal Battlefield 2014 has come to pass, and after much hype and excitement the Nigerian startup competition ultimately looked to three ventures as the winners. Out of the 92 applicants and initial seven finalists, these are the top startups: PrepClass, who got first place, is an e-learning startup that describes itself as an online portal that helps students prepare for exams. PrepClass literally prepares students for popular tests such as the nationwide JAMB exams. PrepClass received US$20,000 and some extra goodies. In second place there's Callbase. It's described as being a telephone system for modern distributed teams. Basically, it's a cloud-based service...

  • Momentum Core and Leti Arts bring African apps to Mobile World Congress

    African start-ups Momentum Core and Leti Arts will this year showcase their apps optimised for Intel Architecture at Mobile World Congress. Momentum Core will showcase its Simiyu the Chicken gaming app while Leti Arts will showcase their Leti Center. The two apps were developed with support from Intel's Software Services Group in Africa which has been training developers in the last 6 months, enabling them to create and port Android apps for Intel Android devices. Urging developers across Africa to take advantage of the free resources and training support offered by Intel Corporation in Africa, Agatha Gikunda, Software Services Lead for...

  • What startups may come: a look at Silicon Lagoon in Nigeria

    "What exactly is a business plan?" a startup says to me. Life in Nigeria's booming startup scene is not like any other. "We don't really take on a lot of risk," he says to me, but the business he is running will probably hang on risks that he will have to start taking soon. A business plan is not really a fully formed idea for some of the startups I have met. I ask about business models and revenue projections -- "I don't know" is the standard response. This ecosystem is not actually an ecosystem, I am told. "In Nigeria, we...

  • Bus.com.ng now takes Nigerians to over 200 destinations, compatible with PAGA

    Spark, the Nigerian "company builder" founded by Jason Njoku, Bastian Gotter and Mary Remmy-Njoku (all of iROKOtv) has reason to be happy as one of its initial investments: bus ticketing website bus.com.ng has become Nigeria's largest bus travel site taking people to over 200 destinations around the country. Collaborating with more than 65 bus operators, and offering departure points in seven states in Nigeria, bus.ng.com is now also in partnership with mobile payments solution PAGA, ensuring that its offering is convenient and secure for commuters. Bus.com.ng is essentially a booking site where commuters can pre-book, and compare, bus tickets online or...

  • Webfluential calls for popular web personas and brands after success

    South African startup Webfluential, a platform that aims to connect South Africa's most influential web users, announced recently that it now offers more brands and marketing agencies access to 620 social media influencers who in turn have access to over 6 million South Africans. The concept is simple: online personas with over one thousand followers on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram or what have you, sign up to Webfluential which then connects them with marketing agencies. Agencies, on the other hand, will then theoretically have access to over 10% of South Africans. Mike Sharman, co-founder of Webfluential says, "Our intention was...

  • Confirmed: Naspers shutting down MIH SA ecommerce sites, focus shifts to Kalahari

    Ventureburn can officially confirm that the African division of MIH, Naspers' online investment arm, is in the process of shutting down a number of its South African ecommerce properties. Earlier today we reported that the emerging markets internet and media giant was preparing to shut down a number of its smaller ecommerce properties, including online fashion outlet Style 36, digital camera store SAcamera and baby product outfit Kinderelo. Most of the sites affected are part of the company’s African Internet Accelerator (AIA) programme. AIA was founded in mid 2013 with a majority investment from MIH. Now however, it is...