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  • 14 International events and a startup exchange for your calendar

    The last post I wrote featured seven, which later became nine, South African events worth attending to grow your startup. If you have started building a product or platform that you deem worthy of international exposure, which I’m sure it is, then you may want to attract the attention of investors, mentors and innovators worldwide. Here is a list of 14 events and a startup exchange programme you may want to consider: 1. South by Southwest (SXSW) One of the most talked about conferences is SXSW, whose focus is in music, independent films and emerging technologies. It is renowned for being...

  • Company Office

    Faster and Free Connectivity as Tshwane WiFi upgrades to 15mbps and reaches unprecedented penetration

    The City of Tshwane has recently upgraded the maximum speeds on its Free WiFi network to 15mbps (megabit per second), Project Isizwe has confirmed. To date the average speed for users has been 7mbps. The network has grown to 633 sites over the past 18 months, resulting in economies of scale that can be passed to citizens in the form of faster WiFi speeds without any additional cost to the City. “The provision of free access to the internet promotes social inclusion, stimulates growth, and supports learning through the accessibility of digital education material,” said Tshwane Executive Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa...

  • Digital publishing conduit Snapplify launches Android platform

    If you haven’t heard of Snapplify, it’s a solution that enables publishers, authors and content providers to convert their books, magazines and brochures into digital publications. If the concept sounds compelling to you and you happen to be in London between 16 and 18 April this year, Snapplify will be on hand at the London Book Fair to launch its new Android platform. Its iOS version currently supports publishers such as iMaverick, Random House Struik, New Holland Publishing and Fiell Publishing. CEO Wesley Lynch says other items on the London agenda include the strengthening of Snapplify’s regional channels and...

  • WineConnected brings wine-making online

    It’s not easy to get excited about wine if you have been living under the notion that US$2 box wine is the best of the best. It takes a smartly designed website, and an online wine-ordering system to bring wooded cabernet sauvignons to the masses. That website is WineConnected. WineConnected wants you to become a member of its family. It’s not simply a matter of logging on, ordering a case of bubbly and drinking till dawn. No sir, WineConnected gets you invested in the concept of wine creation. From grape to glass, it’s your show baby. The concept comes from...

  • Crowdinvest, ‘worlds first crowd sourced investment platform’, launches

    Any new startup, scratch that, any business should be solving the universal issue of “what problem can my company solve?” Crowdinvest, a venture by three ambitious Cape Town locals aims to address the need of the burgeoning startup in a distinctly un-Kickstarter like way. How so? By crowdfunding projects through social networks, word of mouth and whatever else fits the bill. Anton Breytenbach, Jay Thomson and Jaco van der Bank are the trio founders behind Crowdinvest. Breytenbach is the CEO, Thomson the CTO and Van der Bank the SBA. According to Thomson, Crowdinvest cost R2-million “to iron out the various legal...

  • Snapdisk: South African startup enters cloud storage race

    We are spoilt for choice when it comes to cloud storage solutions, but we’ve yet to see an emerging market company truly stick it to big name services such as Carbonite, Mozy, DropBox , SugarSync, Box and Wuala. South African company, Motillion, wants to change that with Snapdisk, a secure cloud storage and file sharing service for PC, Mac, and mobile devices. Depending on the package you choose, Snapdisk allows you to schedule backups -- think Carbonite -- and sync your files across multiple devices -- think DropBox. Snapdisk aims to set itself apart by competing on ease of use and...

  • Spaaza: The glue that brings together online and offline shopping

    eCommerce changed everything, but beyond the convenience, choice and financial savings yielded by armchair shopping, there’s an armada of disgruntled brick and mortar businesses who find it hard to compete. Why? In the US, big online retailers such as Amazon are exempt from collecting sales tax from online shoppers in the majority of states. A 1992 US Supreme Court ruling states that online retailers don’t have to collect sales taxes in states where they lack a physical presence. The pressure is mounting however, local governments are joining arms with offline retailers to change the laws, as projections of uncollected taxes...

  • What tech businesses need to survive in a time of flux

    The theme of the 2012 Skoll World Forum is "Flux: seizing momentum, driving change", which I think is a fantastic one. We’ve never had such upheaval in the way businesses work, in how citizens interact with government, or in how information flows in the world. It’s about change, and survival in a time of flux is best done through agility and creativity. "As an operating paradigm, it expresses the fluid nature of relationships, policies, institutions and human beings which are ever-changing in non-linear ways." Thriving on acceleration The world we live in today is accelerating, in just about everything we’re seeing disruptive...

  • 4 Factors shaping social impact investment in Africa’s tech scene

    I recently took part in a panel discussion focused on “investing in tech in Africa”. It was a good session, as it was very much a discussion between the audience and ourselves. There were a number of points that came up illustrating both the current difficulties and future opportunities when it comes to investing in the African tech space. Using what's there There are a number of tech hubs and labs coming up across the continent, and each have a different focus as we all try to experiment in our space to see what works. The Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of...

  • It’s Startup Month at Memeburn

    Every month is startup month at Memeburn, but we’re doing something special for the month of April. We invite you to let us know about which killer startups -- your own or ones you admire -- we should be covering. Share on Facebook or Twitter Tell us about deserving startups by using the hashtag #memestartup on Twitter or by posting a short motivation on Memeburn's Facebook page. If you’d like us to feature your own startup, be sure to complete Memeburn's startup questionnaire. Pitch your startup on Google+ Later this month, Memeburn will be hosting a Google+ Hangout  featuring MXit and World of...

  • The benefits of customer reviews on your ecommerce site

    By now, unless you’ve been spending the vast majority of your time hankering around the Gobi Desert, sans internet, you’ll have noticed the abundance of ecommerce sites that have sprung up, especially in emerging market regions. There’s no disputing it, ecommerce is a booming industry, and if the latest stats are anything to go by, we can assume that it's going to develop into even bigger and better things over the next few years. An interesting success story around ecommerce is in South Africa. To give you an idea of just how successful it's proven to be so far, let’s...

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