• BURN MEDIA
    • Memeburn
      Tech-savvy insight and analysis
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!
  • Financial investors vs business owners: Every startup’s ‘offside’ relationship

    My cry goes out not to add to the orchestra of outrage as referees seemingly miss foul play in our favourite sports, but to voice my support for another cause, the "Business Owner" and "Financial Investor" relationship, where too many "offside" decisions are not blown. Any business owner, unless their family has one of those black American Express credit cards or they have, like Scrooge McDuck, managed to save their life earnings, would have had a relationship with a Financial Investor in some form. Call them Angel Investors, Venture Capitalists, Financial Institutions or my Silent Partner, I refer to...

  • Company Office

    SA fintech pioneers Sureswipe, Traderoot partner to disrupt payment space

    Two of South Africa’s first financial technology companies have announced a strategic business relationship that is set to change the fintech payment space. Traderoot and Sureswipe have made available a quick, comprehensive and Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant payment platform that reverses the relationship SMEs and merchants have with traditional financial institutions and places control of business processes in their own hands. Sureswipe’s managing director Paul Kent (pictured left, above) says this new approach to payment transactions is set to disrupt the current mindset of the industry, as merchants no longer have to be locked into single relationships with large financial institutions that...

  • FeedbackRocket, a ‘360 degree’ employer feedback tool

    If buzzwords like "360 degree feedback" and "anonymised responses" rev your engine, then FeedbackRocket.com will fuel the fire inside of you. FeedbackRocket is anonymous employee-to-employer feedback technology, used simply and effectively to communicate issues to relevant managers at work. Or as Dr. Gavin Symanowitz, the founder of FeedbackRocket puts it, "It enables important work-place conversations that would never happen face-to-face. It opens up the lines of communication between managers and employees in a powerful new way". Launched in June 2011, this self-funded Johannesburg-based company was the sole concept of Symanowitz, qualified actuary and previous strategic head of a major South African...

  • You better scale up: The ecommerce boom is upon us

    By 2015 companies will generate 50% of their online business via their social presence and mobile applications. This bold claim comes from prominent research company, Gartner. Retailers in the e-commerce sector will begin to offer new context-aware, mobile-based application capabilities that can be accessed via a browser or installed as an application on a phone. This will happen as the number of mobile phones overtakes PCs and as people use mobile browsers and applications as the main points of interaction. Gartner reckons that ecommerce operations will need to scale up their operations to handle the increased traffic on their sites...

  • Pitching perfection to investors: A 10-step guide

    Enthusiastic entrepreneurs looking to raise funding must realise that a great business case alone is definitely not enough to guarantee a favorable outcome. Not preparing adequately for a presentation to an angel investor or a venture capital fund is a sure-fire way of guaranteeing failure. The power of a strong, well polished pitch to funders cannot be underestimated and it warrants considerable time and effort to make sure that you hit the mark first off. Here are some tips on what funders might expect from entrepreneurs hoping to make a good impression. 1. Perfect your micro pitch This is your 90-second introduction,...

  • Eight startups that promise to Ignite

    Tech4Africa, a prominent web and emerging technology conference, has announced the eight finalists for its "Samsung Ignite" startup initiative. The startups provide a diverse range of services, covering everything from real-time wine buying assistance to automised billing. Ignite aims to showcase and foster local technology development and is inspired by similar competitions at internationally renowned conferences like South by South West and TechCrunch Disrupt. The eight finalists will have the opportunity to pitch their companies to an audience of influencers, journos, bloggers, media, attendees, investors, mentors, and their peers. "We are extremely excited about such a platform from which local...

  • Ziliot.com — making social B2B simple

    How often do you consider your business relationships in the social realm? Did you ever realise how powerful its influence can be in developing your company? Social startup Ziliot.com wants to harness the power of social networking, to "bridge the business trust and information gap between developed countries and developing countries". Memeburn spoke to Aniekan Okono, the 30 year-old Founder of Ziliot. Okono runs the company from Finland with his business partner, Tuan Vu, a software engineering graduate with a "distinguished interest in business”. Becoming the leaders of B2B Ziliot is all about bringing new business to the masses. Okono cottoned...

  • 4 steps to ‘acquirability’ in an age of tech optimism

    In the midst of a financial crisis earlier this year, news circulated that Apple held more cash than the US government. Analysts took what they wanted from the situation, but one thing is clear: Technology is driving wealth creation despite uncertainty in many sectors. Some have called it the Second Gilded age of massive wealth creation -- the original Gilded Age being the Roaring Twenties in the railroad era. Startup geeks and entrepreneurs are keen to take advantage, but so are investors. In his book, Richistan, the Wall Street Journal’s Robert Frank profiles the world’s new moneyed rich and...

  • eCommerce site buys Mr Delivery arm to offer same-day deliveries

    TAKEALOT, a South African online retail store and Mr Delivery Express, a subsidiary company of Mr Delivery Holdings are teaming up to give “speedier and more efficient service through the eventual introduction of same-day delivery for any item held in stock.” Simply put, same-day delivery for online shoppers. A 40% stake in Mr Delivery Express has been cemented by TAKEALOT and is said to be “a first of its kind in the South African e-commerce industry.” “Mr Delivery has a national footprint and partnering with TAKEALOT was a natural evolution given the nature of their business. With the logistical backbone that...

  • What happens after Venture Capital funding is secured?

    Many Venture Capital (VC) articles, blogs and the like focus on how to secure VC. But not many disclose that the real work starts post-investment. While the investment decision is critical to portfolio performance, VCs spend more than 60% of their time on post-investment activities in order to grow investments for lucrative exits. These activities can be separated into monitoring (protecting the interests of the investor) and value-adding activities (strategic influence, mentorship and access to networks). It should be noted that because of the many different VC management styles, VC involvement post-investment vary greatly -- ranging from informal interaction to...

  • Make Group-Buying work for your business

    Unless you've been holed-up in a snow-cave the last few months (Saskatoon is so lovely this time of year), you’ve probably heard about this “incredible phenomenon” called Group-Buying. It’s touted as the ultimate way for you to generate business awareness and get more clients through the door. South Africa hasn’t been left behind either -- someone mentioned to me last week that there are now 39 such sites around in South Africa, with an airline just starting one. Even local Shock-Jock, Gareth Cliff, has one. With everyone jumping on the bandwagon of Group-Buying, should you be putting your business on...