Ecommerce, Entrepreneurship

What I’ve learnt from the trenches of startup ecommerce in London

London I’ve spent almost two weeks writing this. At first it was too personal, then it became too anecdotal, so I’ve settled on a list of things which I think are concrete lessons I can impart, and which are easily digestible. Hope you find it useful! Ecommerce is hard The startup world is largely populated by tech people. Or led by tech people. I think that ecommerce went through a phase where technology was a barrier to entry, but that phase is over ...

Competition, Startup news

Student admin startup Gradesmatch wins Ventureburn Startup Battle

Startup Battle 2 From B2B recycling through to travel agents and elearning, last week's Social Media Week Johannesburg saw five exciting tech startups go head-to-head for a chance to be crowned the ultimate winner of Ventureburn's Startup Battle. While competition was extremely tough, student administrative startup Gradesmatch was eventually dubbed the winner and walked away with R25 000 sponsored by Ford Motors SA. Apart from the cash prize, the winning company was also awarded a mentoring session with Sage Pastel Managing Director Steven Cohen, as well ...

Startup news

Sage SA acquires talent connection portal SkillsMap

Sage Skillsmap Software and services company Sage South Africa has acquired SkillsMap, an online platform that connects employers in South Africa and the rest of the continent with potential candidates. According to Sage, the cloud-based, end-to-end recruitment solution was acquired in order to broaden its payroll and HR offering. In line with this, the product has been rebranded Sage SkillsMap and will eventually integrate to both Sage VIP and Sage Pastel’s Payroll & HR systems. In addition, the company says, Sage SkillsMap ...

Startup news

Your startup could win an eight-week trip to Silicon Valley: here’s how

Silicon Valley In the world of startups, Silicon Valley is pretty the place everyone else has tried to ape. There's a good reason for that too. The collection of Southern California towns has birthed some of the biggest technology companies the world has ever seen. And now, if you play your cards right, your startup could spend two months there soaking up all the knowledge on offer. The eight week trip to Silicon Valley is the grand prize in SiMODiSA's 10-10 event, ...


The technophobic entrepreneur: a dying breed

Surprised nerd hides behind a computer keyboard over white background Ecommerce, business management apps, social media, The Cloud... the list of technological advances keeps growing. While the sometimes bewildering slew of new technology might make some business owners want to return to the days of the abacus, ignoring it won’t make it go away. Not only can using technological tools help you in your business – they can also be instrumental in your success. Ease of communication Communication is crucial to any business, so it goes without saying that any technology that ...


Superbalist swings past the million member mark

Superbalist acquisition Things are looking pretty good for the team at Superbalist right now. Hot on the heels of its acquisition by South African ecommerce giant Takealot, the curated design shop has announced that it now has more than one-million members prepared to spend their hard-earned cash on it. According to Superbalist co-founder Claude Hanan, a large part of this growth has come from South Africa, with people looking to buy international products, but through a local channel with proven reliability. “Our ...

Startup news

GoMetro announced as finalist in the 2014 Meffys Awards

Gometro GoMetro seems to be on the right track. The transport data startup from Cape Town, South Africa has just announced that it's been short-listed in two categories in the international 2014 Meffys awards. The renowned Meffys international awards competition seeks to reward innovation in the mobile ecosystem. It's said to have attracted over 250 entries across 30 countries across 13 categories, which includes mHealth, Mobile Education and Big Data. GoMetro will be competing in the Social Responsibility & Development category with its ...

Africa, Startup news

Ampion Venture Bus launches crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo

ampion The fellowship programme behind Ampion Venture Bus has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo this week. The initiative is looking to raise US$35 000 before 26 October. The money will be used to take more than 160 participants across the continent, in four buses, in a mission to churn up a group of savvy startups and further promote the evolving African tech scene, both locally and abroad. While there are perks to be gained such as T-shirts and the like, supporters of ...

Africa, Startups

On SA startups going global: 7 case studies you can learn from

globe At the recent South African Innovation Summit, Christine Strutt – a partner at intellectual property law firm Von Seidels – spoke about the importance of startups having an international mindset from day one, and why some of them succeed. Throughout the talk, titled Startup to Grown-up: Local Innovations with a Global Mindset, Strutt used the case studies of seven outstanding startups from the Western Cape, South Africa, which have all managed to scale internationally. The need to highlight these specific companies' stories stemmed from ...

Advertising & Marketing

Electricity payments: a massive opportunity for startups across Africa

Electricity In August 2014, US president Barack Obama announced a renewed commitment to Power Africa, a private sector-led initiative aimed at doubling electricity access in sub-Saharan Africa, where an estimated 600 million people are without reliable access to power. He raised the bar, pledging to add 30 000MW of energy (triple last year’s goal of 10 000MW) and create new connections for at least 60 million households and businesses. He also pledged US$300-million in grant assistance per year to expand Power ...