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  • Providing a platform for South Korean startups: BeLaunch

    South Korea is a leading player in the global tech industry with Korean brands leaving their mark in various sectors. While we hear a lot about South Korean firms innovating and pushing the envelope, there is hardly any platform to showcase the thriving software and tech startup scene in South Korea. BeLaunch hopes to do just that by giving a platform for Korean startups and at the same time enable people and organizations outside Korea to tap into the exciting world of Korean entrepreneurship. BeLaunch is an initiative of BeSuccess which is one of South Korea’s leading media platforms...

  • Company Office

    treadFEST 2017 – five stages with Locnville, Sketchy Bongo, Holly Wasserfall

    treadFEST 2017 -- which takes place from 3 to 6 December in the Drakensberg -- presents five stages with a mix of music genres: Jerry and the Bandits, Holly Wasserfall, Locnville, Sketchy Bongo, Monark are just six among a host of bands and DJs in the pipeline. Jerry and the Bandits’ latest EP, Fiction in Folktale, is the result of passion, hard work, long hours, and hoarse voices. “Many people get confused by the title we have chosen but it’s not so confusing if you think about it”, says vocalist Jerry. “It basically means that we are passing our stories through to others by...

  • Would you run your startup from a boat docked off Silicon Valley?

    This has the potential to be cool. Very cool. It's a boat that will eventually float 12 miles (19.3km) off the coast of California and it's attracting attention from startups around the world. The boat, which bills itself as a floating island, is the brainchild of a company called Blueseed. The fact that it's in international waters means that people can have close access to funding from Silicon Valley VCs without a US work visa. According to a report released by Blueseed, that may not be the biggest draw though. Nearly a quarter of the companies that have signed up to...

  • Eight startup sins and how to avoid committing them [Net Prophet]

    Starting a business baby, starting a business. It can be a wild ride. Sylvia Gruber co-Founder and CEO of Rubybox broke down her experiences with Rubybox into eight, bite-sized tips for burgeoning startups. Gruber is big on keeping things basic and personal, simplicity is key -- often the most difficult and the most important aspect to get right. Rubybox is a monthly beauty box subscription service that provides its subscribers with beauty product samples. The service allows for business-to-business opportunities by being a conduit for beauty product companies, to push out product samples into the market, for research and promotion....

  • 4 reasons big-time VCs are investing in emerging markets

    With technological advancements in developing nations speeding the growth rate of high impact tech start-ups, many American venture capital firms are now looking further afield to expand their investment portfolios. But what is driving this trend? 1. Lack of local funding There’s certainly no shortage of innovative ideas coming out of emerging market countries. Africa, China, Russia and many others are growing steadily, and are producing an ever-increasing number of tech success stories, many with an extensive global reach. However, the potential for innovation in these countries has been historically hampered by a lack of access to funding, based on an entrenched...

  • The Cameroon Startup Challenge: Is the next global company in Cameroon?

    Sanaga Ventures and VC4Africa are turning their sights to Cameroon to uncover the most innovative web, mobile or hardware-based startups. The Cameroon Startup Challenge offers a cash prize of US$5 000 and an opportunity to receive mentorship and incubation at ActivSpaces, Cameroon’s leading technology hub. “Innovation can come from anywhere in the world, and the next global company might very well be from Cameroon. We want to do what we can to make that happen”, says Ben White, founder of VC4Africa, the large online community of venture capitalists, angels and entrepreneurs that concentrate on developing businesses in Africa. Entries...

  • Mobi.lity — A lifeline for railway commuters

    When civil engineer Justin Coetzee took a position as a public transport planner, he decided to leave his car parked at home and started taking the train to work in the morning. His daily route opened his eyes to the inconsistency of railway transport in his hometown of Cape Town, and in South Africa as a whole. The given timetable is unreliable. Commuters do not know when they will get to work or arrive home, nor are they privy to information about maintenance, cancellations and strikes. Instead of organising a riot he spent some time thinking about a solution. Trains break...

  • 6 Japanese startups worth keeping an eye on

    Given that Japan has some of the biggest tech companies on the planet, it's easy to overlook its startup scene. It's also probably fair to say that the country's emerging tech companies also don't get nearly as much press those from Silicon Valley, or even China and Russia. Thing is, once you take a step back from the massive corporates, there are some very exciting things happening in Japan. At a recent tech event I had the privilege of finding out about a handful of them. 1. Beatrobo CEO/Founder: Hiroshi Asaeda A music community service which enables users to share their...

  • Ad Dynamo goes on a Brazilian adventure

    There are a good few people who think that the next big thing in tech could come from Latin America. It makes sense that foreign companies would want to invest there too. The latest to do so is Ad Dynamo, an online and mobile advertising marketplace with a global presence. The company today officially announced its entry into the Brazilian market, with CEO Sean Riley saying the country represents "an enormous growth market in both online and mobile advertising". Ad Dynamo isn't going it alone in Brazil either, announcing that it would be working in partnership with native outfit...

  • Google’s Page and Schmidt backing asteroid mining startup

    Wired is reporting that a group of intrepid billionaires will soon announce their new venture called Planetary Resources, Inc, “which plans to send swarms of robots to space to scout asteroids for precious metals and set up mines to bring resources back to Earth." Nope, this is not a movie, this is actually happening. “The resources of Earth pale in comparison to the wealth of the solar system," Eric Anderson who founded the commercial space tourism company Space Adventures, told Wired. Anderson is co-founder of Planetory Resources along with Peter Diamandis, who started the X Prize foundation, which offers prizes for...

  • Umbono Alpha Beta: Beer, pizza and startups, the Google way

    Umbono Alpha Beta is a Google event at which you can have as much free beer and pizza as you want, as long as you love startups. Memeburn was invited to watch as six startups -- three teams at the end of their six month Umbono program (last year's winners) and three who are just beginning -- presented their products and businesses to a packed (and we do mean packed) room. Umbono launched last year as a trial startup incubation project exclusive to Cape Town, South Africa. The Umbono programme aims to transform visions into businesses by taking successful applicants with new...

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