China, Venture capital

Fab receives $150 million in Series D funding, led by China giant Tencent

fab logo Fab, the gay social network turned ecommerce-design service with 14-million registered members, is now worth over US$1-billion after it received US$150 million in Series D funding. One of the investors involved in the round was none other than Tencent, China's largest listed Internet company whose services include social networks, ecommerce and web portals. Fab's impressive valuation has almost doubled since its last round of funding a year ago, but the company remains unprofitable, according to The Wall Street Journal. This indicates ...


WooCommerce democratises ecommerce — a true WordPress child

woothemes logo The WordPress themes' space has gotten quite crowed in the last few years. From ThemeForest to Elegant Themes, the competitors have boxed it out for dominance, or at least tried to establish their niche within the WordPress ecosystem. All the while one competitor has quietly gone about its business, and reaped the rewards. This is WooThemes. Everybody loves a good origin story A proudly South African company, although many don't know it, WooThemes has quite a Romantic tale behind it. It was ...

Startup news

Rocket Internet boasts crazy growth for Nigerian Amazon clone Jumia

jumia fashion German serial web company copiers, Rocket Internet, is reporting that its Nigeria-based Amazon wannabe, Jumia, will move to a new 90 000 sqft warehouse in Lagos which will house 500 employees and "create the largest ecommerce campus in West Africa." Jumnia has now served more than 500 000 customers since its launch, one year ago and is reporting approximately 100 000 unique visitors a day -- making it Nigeria's fourth most visited website according to Rocket Internet (and 18th according ...


Startup insights from the Aspen Institute’s state of global business

Last week, the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs released its impact report on the state of global business. According to the organisation, one of the biggest factors hindering growth in emerging markets is access to loans and funds. "We live in a world today in which one of the biggest problems that we face is a lack of jobs. As we think about what’s going in the Middle East and North Africa, and the challenges that we see in Africa, ...

Emerging Markets, Startups

The UCWeb story: the turning points that grew the startup to 400m users

UC browser With more than 400-million users of its UC Browser, China’s UCWeb is probably one of most popular mobile browser makers in the world. UCWeb CEO Yu Yongfu tells us that that the company’s first product started as a BlackBerry Messenger type of service called UCMail. Unfortunately, it didn’t take off. But the team was quick to realize that people weren’t using UCMail. Rather, they wanted an application that could help them browse the web. So in 2004, UCMail rebranded to UCWeb, ...

Entrepreneurship, Featured

The most comprehensive guide to the SA startup landscape ever [Resource]

startup_ecosystems You have just arrived on South Africa's startup scene, you're lost and not sure where to start, or what to do next. You have inherited millions and you're looking to invest through an Angel Network and its safety in numbers. Your company is great but your growth strategy is a bit lacking. Don't worry, there are places, people, organisations and events to look to for advice and information. We have scoured South Africa's entrepreneurial landscape and hand-picked some of the ...


Figuring out whether to bootstrap or find a VC overlord? Read this first

Bootstrap We love the idea of bootstrapping here -- we even have a guide to it. Recently I have been noticing a movement toward bootstrapping. It seems that it's the way to go if you want to avoid being "screwed" by the lovely people known as Venture Capitalists (VCs). But is it really? Many people make the argument for bootstrapping and I am mostly inclined to agree with them, at the very least in the idea stage. The biggest argument for bootstrapping ...

BurnMedia TV, Startups

Startup Blitz: Dream Mobile, low-cost handsets for the African consumer

dream_mobile1 The rising African consumer-market is on the verge of blooming, and waiting to be tapped into. At the center of it all is the mobile device: a vessel that empowers the consumer by connecting them to the internet, and gives them access to the world's information and, let's not forget, (paid) content. Recognising this potential is startup Dream Mobile, a manufacturer of low-cost smart handsets for the African market. Its Dream Phones are packed with functionality and power at a ...

Advertising & Marketing, Africa, News

Adfu partners with social network Yookos to extend reach in Africa

Adfu Adfu, online marketing company situated in Johannesburg, has recently partnered with Yookos which is the popular Africa-born social network site. The partnership aims to both increase market reach into a more defined growing African market and to drive advertising and future revenue. Adfu is part of a network of sites owned by Kagiso Media. Kagiso Digital has launched the AdFu network in 2012 to offer a range of opportunities within vertical markets to advertisers and niche publishers. The company has ...

Startup news

Every1Mobile closes R18m angel round, announces 3 million monthly visits

Every1Mobile (E1M), the company that specialises in building mass audiences via mobile in sub-Saharan Africa, announced that it has raised R18-million in angel investment. The company that runs its core operations from Cape Town, operates nine mobile sites covering education, health, jobs and entertainment aimed at the 15 to 35 age group. E1M, headquartered in the UK was founded in 2010. It uses the power of its mobile-enabled social networks to attract organisations that would like to target sub-Saharan Africa's younger demographic. ...