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  • Five South African fintech dealmakers your startup should meet

    Fintech is one of the fastest growing startup sectors in the world. A number of SA startups have secured multi-million rand investments of late, including in i-Pay, WiiGroup, Entersekt and Luno. KPMG estimates in a report last year that global investment in fintech companies grew from $19-billion in 2015 to over $31-billion in 2017. While a number of insurance and financial services companies are involved in funding fintech startups -- venture capitalists, accelerator heads and banking heads are also getting stuck in. Ventureburn lists five dealmakers that entrepreneurs in the fintech sector should have a conversation with. Here they are. Clive Butkow Disruptive technology that is 12 months...

  • Company Office

    Sureswipe's new referral programme boosts business and gives cash back

    Sureswipe's Referral Programme has stepped up a gear. It now incentivises not only staff and new and existing customers to refer friends and businesses to Sureswipe’s card payment products, but the larger business community as well. Anyone can now refer Sureswipe to a new business and on installation of a product, get cash straight back into their pockets. To facilitate this process, Sureswipe has built a slick new dashboard that includes three simple steps that track the referral process. Step 1: Visit clientzone.sureswipe.co.za Step 2: Complete your personal details and banking details Step 3: Complete the details of the business you are referring. As...

  • Four fintech companies selected for R2.5m AlphaCode Accelerate programme

    Fintech accelerator AlphaCode has announced the names of four companies selected to join its recently launched R2.5-million accelerator programme AlphaCode Accelerate. The four companies are Entersekt, Livestock Wealth, Click2Sure and Invoice Worx. The two-year long AlphaCode Accelerate programme, which AlphaCode has partnered on with scale-up accelerator 10X-e, will offer the four companies with mentorship, expert guidance and support services. AlphaCode has partnered with scale-up accelerator 10X-e to provide the R2.5-million AlphaCode Accelerate programme which offers participants mentorship, expert guidance and support services In a statement today (6 September), Rand Merchant Investment Holding investments executive and AlphaCode head Dominique Collett said the four companies will be part of a fully sponsored group of like-minded financial services...

  • Ventures Platform backs healthtech startup MDaaS with $100k investment

    Nigerian venture capital (VC) firm Ventures Platform has invested $100 000 into Lagos-based healthtech startup MDaaS Global. Ventures Platform founder and CEO Kola Aina announced the investment on Tuesday (4 September) in a post on Medium. MDaaS Global was founded in 2016 by CEO Oluwasoga Oni, CFO Genevieve Barnard Oni, supply chain manager Joe McCord and Nigeria country manager Opeyemi Ologun. The healthtech startup wants to build Africa's largest network of low-cost private medical diagnostic and primary care facilities. In the Medium post, Aina said MDaaS Global's first centre -- which the startup built in Ibadan, Nigeria -- had broken even after five months, in addition to growing revenue by...

  • Mercedes-Benz SA courts students, professionals in new innovation challenge

    Automotive giant Mercedes-Benz South Africa in partnership with business incubator LaunchLab has launched the Mercedes-Benz South Africa Ideas Challenge, an innovation initiative aimed at students and young professionals. Launchlab and Mercede-Benz SA aims to invite interested innovators to pitch their ideas around a set of challenges which are tailor-made to advance manufacturing as well as relevant industry topics, as identified by Mercedes-Benz SA. The challenge spans various focus areas which include big data and machine learning for manufacturing, the digitisation of logistics and production, machine learning, and Industry 4.0. The deadline for submissions for the Mercedes-Benz South Africa Ideas Challenge is 28 September In a statement on...

  • Are these the messages Springleap’s Eran Eyal sent to investors for funding?

    Just months before he shut down his former startup Springleap, SA entrepreneur Eran Eyal who faces fraud charges in the US, appears to have sent LinkedIn messages to numerous investors saying the startup is "closing its seed round soon" and asking for investment contributions. A top Cape Town entrepreneur, who asked to remain unnamed, today sent Ventureburn screenshots of two messages he said Eyal (pictured above) had sent to an investor just months before he listed himself on Linkedin as leaving Springleap -- at the beginning of 2016 (see below screenshot of Eyal's LinkedIn profile taken today). A former colleague in Springleap, Trevor Wolfe, last week confirmed to Ventureburn that...

  • Goodwell launches new Africa-focused €20m fund aimed at inclusive economy

    Dutch impact investor Goodwell Investments has announced that it has launched Goodwell IV, a €20-million fund for investments in the inclusive economy in Sub-Saharan Africa. In a statement today (5 September), the impact investor said the launch of the fund "specifically meets" growing demand for impact investments from private investors, family offices and foundations that approached Goodwell Investments following the successful closure of its predecessor fund, Goodwell III, earlier this year. Responding to questions from Ventureburn, Goodwell Investments director for marketing Nico Blaauw said the new fund has "similar specifics" as its previous fund -- Goodwell III. Goodwell IV will invest a minimum ticket size of €250 000...

  • Kenyan logistics startup Bwala Africa Group secures over $200k in funding

    Nairobi-based last-mile logistics startup Bwala Africa Group has secured a loan of 24-million Kenyan Shillings ($238 000) from Kenyan bank CFC Stanbic. The startup, which launched earlier this year in January and claims to have recorded over 6000 deliveries in Nairobi, will use the capital to purchase eight new trucks from Isuzu East Africa. In a statement yesterday (4 September), Bwala Africa Group founder and CEO Kennedy Nyabwala said the startup has entered into "major partnerships" with some of Kenya's top retail stores. Bwala Africa Group, which was founded nine months ago, has also launched its own escrow payment service called BwalaPay "The partners include Copia,...

  • Nigerian ISP startup Tizeti closes $3m Series A round led by 4DX Ventures

    Lagos-based ISP startup Tizeti, and its Wifi.com.ng service, has closed a $3-million Series-A round led by 4DX Ventures. Tizeti builds and operates solar-powered towers while also providing residences, businesses, events and conferences with unlimited high-speed broadband internet access. The startup claims that since it graduated from Y Combinator's Winter 2017 cohort, it has installed over 7000 Wi-Fi hotspots in Nigeria and that it has 150 000 users. In a statement today (5 September), the startup revealed that Y Combinator Continuity, Lynett Capital, Social Capital, Western Technology Investment, Friále and Golden Palm Investments also participated in the round. As part of the investment, 4DX managing partner and...

  • Springleap’s Eran Eyal removed as CEO of Shopin and replaced with interim head [Updated]

    UPDATE: Shopin co-founders Jeremy Harkness and Divakar Rayapaty appear to have taken control of the company, after removing SA entrepreneur Eran Eyal as CEO and replacing him with an interim head. "Please have confidence that we have not stopped working and we will continue to forge ahead to bring the Shopin product to the market," Harkness and Rayapaty said in a statement released today, on 5 September (see here). Shopin, the US startup founded by SA entrepreneur Eran Eyal who faces fraud charges in the US, has removed the former Springleap founder from his position as CEO of the US company and replaced...

  • Konza City headquarters expected to be completed by December says agency head

    The headquarters for Kenya’s Konza Techno City is just months from completion, Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) CEO Eng John Tanui revealed yesterday. Critics in Kenya have regularly bemoaned the initiative -- which is expected to cost $14.5-billion, take 10 to 20 years to be fully operational and has been dubbed “Silicon Savannah” -- as slow to get off the ground. In an email Tanui told Ventureburn that construction on the nine-storey headquarters is 90% complete and is expected to be completed by December. The building will host the agency's staff and provide office space for anchor tenants, investors and the innovation community. Construction of Konza City's nine-storey...

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