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  • Time is ripe for startups like Pineapple to disrupt insurance – Old Mutual manager

    Startups are set to disrupt the insurance business model fundamentally, says Stanley Gabriel, head of innovation at Old Mutual Personal Finance. Gabriel was responding to a question from Ventureburn on big trends he sees in the sector that startups should look out for. His comments follow the announcement last week by Johannesburg based insuretech startup Pineapple of a R5.2-million funding round from Lireas Holdings. "Overseas, Lemonade has disrupted the market, paying a claim in seconds, and locally Pineapple raised R5.2-million with their peer-to-peer insurance offering," Gabriel told Ventureburn. Read more: SA startup Pineapple secures R5.2m to take on short-term insurance market "I am excited about these developments and believe that...

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    Here are some simple ways to manage your finances within your startup

    The rate of small business failure remains alarmingly high, even in a digital age that supposedly empowers aspiring entrepreneurs. So despite the fact that it has never been easier to launch a startup venture in 2018, just 40% are still trading after five years of operations. Interestingly, the rate of small business survival after the first year is relatively high at 91%, but this begins to decline considerably as ventures progress and continue to age. Much of this to do with financial mismanagement, particularly in instances where firms try to expand quickly at a disproportionate rate to revenue. In this article, we'll...

  • Google expands intake for new Launchpad Accelerator cohort to 10 African nations

    Google’s Launchpad Accelerator has opened applications for its next cohort -- and has added seven more African countries to the three countries it initially targeted when it first began including startups from the continent earlier this year. When the programme began targeting Africa in May it took applications only from startups based in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. In the new cohort startups from Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Morocco, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda will also be eligible to apply. Read more: JUMO first SA startup to be selected for Google Launchpad Accelerator The announcement was made by the Launchpad Programme's global lead Roy Glasberg last week Thursday, 31 August. Launchpad is...

  • 8 corporate managers that SA tech startups should meet [Digital All Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. In this piece we take a look at eight managers of corporates that startups should meet if they're looking to pitch their app or web platform. Here are 8 corporate managers that SA tech startups with apps and web platforms should meet Follow the link beneath each for a more detailed interview with each corporate on what to look out for when looking...

  • Top startup events in South Africa, Africa you should know about this week [04/09/2017]

    Looking to get into the South African startup scene or catch up on some of your skills? Well, you've come to the right place. There are loads of competitions, networking sessions and workshops happening around South Africa and the rest of the continent (namely Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana) that we've rounded up to make your life a bit easier. This article is part of a weekly series that highlights all the top startup competitions, networking sessions, workshops and conferences around South Africa, and the greater region. If you have any event recommendations for us to add to the list, or...

  • Czech accelerator lures startups in with ‘cheap beer, beautiful girls, clever boys’

    Long-running Czech accelerator JIC STARCUBE is promising 10 startup teams from around the world the chance to hang out in "stylish" bars, enjoy "incredibly cheap" beer and meet "clever boys and beautiful girls". "Brno is an amazing city with stylish bars (New Yorker says here) incredibly cheap bear (half a litre for one dollar!), clever boys and beautiful girls! (sic)" Martina Pouchlá, a public relations specialist told Ventureburn in an email sent out with a press release announcing the call for its ninth cohort. The accelerator, run by innovation agency JIC, says entrepreneurs from all over the world, who have tech projects, are invited to apply. The deadline is the end of next...

  • SA lending platform Prodigy Finance chose London for ‘pro-business regulation’

    Cape Town founder of multi-million dollar lending platform Prodigy Finance Cameron Stevens says the "pro-business" regulation of the UK's Financial Conduct Authority was key in his decision 10 years ago to set up his platform in London 10 years ago. Through the platform Prodigy Finance lends to students globally via an Irish Stock Exchange listed bond. Last month the company announced a R3.19-billion fundraise from venture capital firm Index Ventures, with participation from Balderton Capital and AlphaCode and a global investment bank. South Africa has yet to develop regulation on peer-to-peer lending or equity crowdfunding, while the UK has of late been praised for crafting rules that are fair and balanced. Read more: SA founder of Fintech platform...

  • Six finalists stand chance to each win R500 000 in SAMIP Innovation Challenge

    Newly launched South Africa Media Innovation Program has opened a call for applications for its SAMIP Innovation Challenge, in which up to six finalists will each win a cash prize of up to R500 000. The Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF) with support from Open Society Foundation of South Africa and philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network on Tuesday (29 August) launched the South Africa Media Innovation Program (SAMIP). The programme, which is part of a three-year $4-million partnership, aims to promote innovation in the media industry by funding the development of new and sustainable business models with diverse revenue streams, promoting new approaches to...

  • Six legal obligations to consider before joining Startupbootcamp Cape Town

    Startupbootcamp Cape Town’s acceleration programme kicks off this Monday (4 September). There is big money involved, with participants getting up to €450 000 in benefits from the programme in exchange for an eight percent equity stake. So what are the kind of legal nitty-gritties behind joining a global accelerator’s programme. Startupbootcamp Cape Town co-managing director Zachariah George together with Juliette Thirsk and Shelley Mackay-Davidson of Brevity Law explain the agreement to Ventureburn (the same agreement that all 10 participating startups last month signed with the accelerator). Read more: Startupbootcamp receives 518 applications for first Cape accelerator Here are six legal issues a participant on Startupbootcamp should consider before joining...

  • Silicon Valley’s monopoly on innovation is over says Takealot’s Willem van Biljon

    The monopoly that Silicon Valley has long held in technology innovation is "largely" over, says tech entrepreneur and take-a lot co-CEO Willem van Biljon. Van Biljon is a former Silicon Valley resident himself and one of South Africa’s most respected tech entrepreneurs. The former CSIR employee co-founded Mosaic Software which he sold to S1 Corp in 2004, before starting Nimbula which was later acquired by Oracle in 2013 for $110-million. Since 2014 he has served as co-CEO at SA ecommerce site Takealot. Read more: Are these the 10 all-time biggest exit deals for SA startups? “I think the monopoly on innovation...

  • Here are the 20 startups that will take part in accelerator XL Africa’s first cohort

    World Bank accelerator XL Africa yesterday announced the 20 startups it has selected for the first cohort for its scale-up accelerator programme. The 20 include startups in sector such as edtech, fintech, healthtech, transportation and human resources. The accelerator will help the startups gain access to investors and will assist in raising up to $1.5-million in capital. The accelerator will also offering mentoring by global and local experts for the next four months. The startups will also take up a two-week residency in Cape Town between 6 and 17 November which will entail more interaction with mentors, partners and peers. The residency will culminate in...