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  • ProsperiProp PROPX ICO aimed at property investments now under way

    South African African fintech startup ProsperiProp's initial coin offering (ICO) which aims to help ordinary investors to gain a share of global property investments is now under way. The fintech company launched the ICO on Friday, 15 September 2017. It will run until 31 October. With only 42 days remaining the company has raised just $17 128 through the ICO. In a press release today ProsperiProp said it plans to use a two token cryptocurrency model to reinvent traditional unit trusts, making them simpler to acquire, more cost efficient and as a result a lot more profitable. It follows the appointment last week by...

  • Company Office

    The importance of auditors for businesses that are looking to grow

    Arguably, we've never lived in stranger or more conflicted times. On the one hand, it has never been easier to launch a new business venture or bring a product to market. This is reflected by small business statistics in the UK, with the number of active SMEs in the private sector having increased by 197 000 to a record 5.7-million at the beginning of last year. Despite this, an estimated 96% of all businesses still fail during their first 10 years of trading, as firms continue to do battle with a volatile and strained economic climate. Sure, this figure may be slightly...

  • Edtech incubator Injini selects 8 startups from across Africa for first cohort

    African incubator Injini -- which claims to be the continent's first ever edtech incubator -- has selected eight startups from Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa and South Sudan to join its first cohort which will kick off on 9 October in Cape Town. Injini co-founder and CEO Jamie Martin (pictured above) told Ventureburn yesterday said the startups were selected following a pitch event on 8 September. He added that the names of the startups would only be unveiled after the startups have signed contracts on 10 October, at a launch event which will take place at the University of Cape Town. The six-month incubation programme begins on...

  • China’s ban of ICOs unlikely to effect long-term bitcoin sales says Luno founder

    China's ban earlier this month of initial coin offerings (ICOs) is unlikely to affect bitcoin sales in the long term -- while the volatility may in fact benefit bitcoin platforms, says the founder of Luno bitcoin platform Marcus Swanepoel. Speaking to Ventureburn yesterday following his startup's announcement of a R120-million funding round, Swanepoel pointed out that ICOs and cryptocurrency itself are two different things and that the ban is likely not effect Bitcoin sales. Read more: SA bitcoin platform Luno closes R120m round led by Balderton Capital "I don't think there will be any fallout from it," said the founder of the four-year old South...

  • Here’s how Africa Chivas Regal winner EmptyTrips will disrupt logistics sector

    Barely a year old, Johannesburg based online trip exchange platform EmptyTrips has been having a good year. The startup won the Africa Chivas Regal Venture Pitching Den at the SA Innovation Summit earlier this month and will represent South Africa at the 2018 Startup World Cup in San Francisco next year. EmptyTrips will next take part in the Slush Global Impact Accelerator in Finland between 21 November and 2 December. The startup has also participated in Singularity U Global Impact Challenge where it was one of the top five finalists and in the annual Seedstars competition where it was placed third in the SA leg of the competition. The five-month old company...

  • Will electric cars substitute conventional ones? [Sponsored]

    The sharp decline in the cost of batteries is driving optimism for the future of the electric car. According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, electric vehicles (EVs) are here to stay. Even more, they are going to become cheaper (a purchase price and maintenance cost) than conventional vehicles with internal combustion engines by 2022. Switching over to electric vehicles is expected to solve probably the biggest ecological issue – carbon emissions – that causes dangerous climate change and shortens lives of many people living in big cities. But in spite of government-initiated subsidies, electric cars are still unaffordable for many people because...

  • FNB manager details six ways startups can improve their pitch to a corporate

    One of the worse things a tech entrepreneur looking to pitch to a corporate can do, is to send one liners to corporate managers asking for individuals to call them, says FNB's head of enterprise development Heather Lowe. "The bank is a business and as you would expect, it is not obliged to simply spend time and resources following up with no ends. Businesses need to take the pitch seriously from the onset," she says. Stakeholders are busy and quite often one has one chance to make an impression, says FNB head The advice is one of six tips she says startups should...

  • SA bitcoin platform Luno closes R120m round led by Balderton Capital

    South African founded bitcoin platform Luno today announced its expansion into 35 new markets across Europe, and a R120-million Series B funding round, led by London-based venture capital firm Balderton Capital. Rand Merchant Investments, through its fintech investment arm, AlphaCode, and existing investors Digital Currency Group also participated in the round. Luno allows users to buy and sell digital currencies. The announcement follows Luno’s R60-million Series A round in 2015, which was led by emerging market tech giant Naspers. While Luno CEO Marcus Swanepoel declined to reveal the exact size of the stake in the company that investors had taken, he said that...

  • Microsoft 4Afrika teams up with Tony Elumelu Foundation to help IT firms

    Microsoft, through its 4Afrika Initiative, has collaborated with the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) to provide entrepreneurs in the foundation's entrepreneurship programme with technology-based tools, resources and mentorship. Microsoft said in a press release yesterday that through the support the two organisations will help entrepreneurs to use ICT to modernise their businesses. Microsoft Nigeria general manager Akin Banuso said the company has found that SMEs who adopt modern IT have seen 15% faster revenue growth than those not using IT. Microsoft and the Tony Emumelu Foundation will help entrepreneurs to use ICT to modernise their businesses Microsoft 4Afrika will provide TEF entrepreneurs with: Access to cloud-based software, online support and...

  • Who is Israeli angel investor company behind success of SA’s Zapper?

    In under four years South African mobile payments platform Zapper has grown to operate in 12 markets, employing over 300 people. It sounds like a SA startup success -- but who really owns the Durban-based company? The company, which earlier this month introduced mobile payment starter packs to the market, does not provide information on its website on who its owners are. While a number of media stories have in the past have referred to Zapper Group CEO David de Villiers (pictured above), as the founder of Zapper, the former IT head at Investec bank told Ventureburn that he started the firm in November 2013 with...

  • Here are the 40 entrepreneurs that will take part in Vusi Thembekwayo initiative

    Venture capitalist Vusi Thembekwayo has selected South Africa’s #Top40 entrepreneurs who will undergo an 18-month mentorship programme. The programme is hosted by Thembekwayo's MyGrowthFund, which aims to nurture high-growth entrepreneurs through funding, incubation and enterprise development. The #Top40 entrepreneurs were selected from almost 3000 SMEs who applied for the programme earlier this year, Thembekwayo said in a press release today. “The volume and quality of applications is a reflection that entrepreneurship is alive and thriving in South Africa," he said. The 40 include those running businesses that turn over as little as R1-million a year, to those that have an annual turnover of R39-million annually. The SMEs...

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