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  • German pharmaceutical Sandoz launches second Healthcare Access Challenge

    German pharmaceutical company Sandoz has announced the launch of the second edition of its Sandoz Healthcare Access Challenge. The Sandoz Hack is a global competition that invites entrepreneurs and innovators to submit ideas that can complement -- or even disrupt -- established approaches to driving access to healthcare. Building on last year's inaugural Sandoz Hack -- which focused on mobile health -- this year’s competition expands to seek broader digital solutions to local healthcare access challenges. This year's theme is "Leveraging digital technologies to solve healthcare access challenges", encouraging ideas that can drive patient access or help healthcare providers to reach more...

  • Company Office

    Banking Africa's Unbanked - Time For A Reality Check

    Plenty of progress has been made on increasing the size of Africa’s banked population. The trouble is, from the amount of noise that is made about the topic, you would be forgiven for thinking we had fixed the problem when we really haven’t. According to the World Bank, today, 62 per cent of the world’s population has a bank account. In 2011 that figure was 51 per cent. In three years, 700 million people became “banked” in some way, and the number of “unbanked” individuals dropped 20 per cent to two billion adults. Much of this progress was attributed to...

  • African startups hunt for investment at Gitex Future Stars [Sponsored]

    Rendani Nevhulaudzi is looking to take on Google Chrome with Ovuwa, Africa's newest search engine. All he needs is a cool $1-million, he says. His is one of about 40 African tech startups seeking investment at Gitex Future Stars expo in Dubai. The tech expo and conference kicked off yesterday at the city's Dubai World Trade Centre and runs until Wednesday (17 October) alongside Gitex Technology Week. Thousands of visitors -- many of whom are likely to include investors -- are expected to attend. In all about 500 startups are listed as exhibitors on Gitex Future Stars' website -- the bulk of these are...

  • FSAT Labs opens applications for fourth cohort of incubation programme

    Cape Town based incubator and accelerator French South African Tech Labs (FSAT Labs) has opened applications for the fourth cohort of its six-month long incubation programme. Applications close on 8 November. Interested tech entrepreneurs will need to complete an application form online and build a pitch deck and email it to FSAT Labs. Those shortlisted for the cohort will be announced on 12 November. These candidates will then be invited to a pitching competition -- to be held at the AfricArena 2018 Tech Conference in Century City, Cape Town on 16 November. The top candidates from the pitching session will win entry into FSAT Lab's incubation...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [15/10/2018]

    The biggest tech startup event taking place on the continent this week is DEMO Africa 2018. It's happening in Casablanca this Thursday and Friday (18 and 19 October). In Cape Town, the Seedstars Cape Town pitch event on Friday (19 October) will see 10 startups battle it out in front of an investment panel for an opportunity to represent the country at both the regional and global Seedstars Summits. In Joburg, the second edition of the Tropics Business Summit will run from Tuesday to Saturday (16 to 20 October) under the theme “Accelerating startups in emerging markets through financial partnerships for inclusive growth...

  • Crossfin acquires majority stake in payment solutions company Crossgate [Updated]

    Cape Town based fintech holding company Crossfin has acquired a majority stake in SA payment solutions company Crossgate for an undisclosed amount. The deal, which was announced yesterday (10 October), follows Crossfin's partnership with SA bank and asset management group Investec to identify and invest in early-stage fintech businesses. In a statement yesterday (11 October), Crossfin COO and co-founder Anton Gaylard said Crossgate has a 10-year track record of forming strategic partnerships with international payment associations, payment card manufacturers, mobile payment experts, processors and other technology providers that enable commerce. In a subsequent email to Ventureburn, Gaylard explained that media technology company Tritech Media previously owned...

  • Founders Factory to build 100 tech startups across Africa in next five years

    Corporate-backed tech startup accelerator and incubator Founders Factory has announced that it will, through its Founders Factory Africa initiative, build and scale 100 tech startups across Africa in the next five years. In a statement on Wednesday (10 October), London-based Founders Factory said it is partnering with Standard Bank and British-American serial entrepreneur Roo Rogers to run the Founders Factory Africa tech accelerator and incubator. Since Founders Factory was founded by Brent Hoberman and Henry Lane Fox in 2015, the accelerator and incubator has secured over £100-million in funding for 70 startups and implemented 60 pilots with its corporate partners. In all 30% of these startups have...

  • SA’s Aerobotics launches five new precision agriculture products

    Cape Town based aerial-data analytics startup Aerobotics has launched five new innovative precision agriculture products that aim to help fruit and wine farmers to detect pests and diseases. The startup launched the new products yesterday (11 October) at an event held at Leopard's Leap Family Vineyards in Franschhoek, near Cape Town. The event was also live-streamed to 11 satellite locations in South Africa (these were in: Kirkwood, the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast, Citrusdal, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Patensie, Tzaneen, Nelspruit and Hartswater. The new products -- which Aerobotics CEO and co-founder James Paterson (pictured above) said are an industry first -- include a drone scouting application, software...

  • IBM, AfriLabs partner to expand digital skills across 123 hubs in 34 countries

    US multinational IBM has partnered with AfriLabs, a pan-African network of innovation hubs, to expand digital skills across the organisation's network of 123 hubs in 34 countries. The partnership, which was announced last Sunday (7 October) will see the AfriLabs work with IBM to roll out the IT giant's Digital Nation Africa (D-NA) programme. The free programme provided African youth with training in emerging technologies as well as equips them to build innovative solutions. In addition, the platform provides participants with an overview of the current job market and suggests multiple learning paths. The partnership will see AfriLabs work with IBM to roll...

  • Eran Eyal lied about existence of Springleap advisory board – UK investor

    A UK angel investor says Springleap founder Eran Eyal, who faces fraud charges in the US, misrepresented him as the chairman of an advisory board which the investor claims "never existed". The SA entrepreneur was charged on 24 August by the New York Attorney General with allegedly stealing $600,000 from investors by fraudulently soliciting investors to purchase convertible notes through false representations of his company, Springleap. If convicted of the top count charged, he faces up to 15 years in prison. Eyal is due in court again on 24 October -- after appearing on 11 September when he posted bail of $500 000, after spending three...

  • SA startup The Sun Exchange announces $500k investment from Alphabit [Updated]

    SA startup The Sun Exchange, a blockchain-based solar micro-leasing marketplace, announced today that it had received a $500,000 seed investment from Alphabit, a multi-million-dollar US hedge fund. The hedge fund, which invests in companies that solve real-world problems by applying blockchain and decentralisation, was launched in April last year and aims to invest $300-million, according to a Reuters story. Alphabit CEO Liam Robertson said in a statement today that with technology that has the potential to disrupt two of today’s most dysfunctional centralised global systems -- energy and finance -- that he's convinced that Sun Exchange will be "one of the best equity...