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  • Grim start to Dragons’ Den SA: six pitches, one investment

    Okay South Africa, Dragons' Den is here. "In the Den, sometimes dreams are made and sometimes hopes are dashed," said show host Xolani Gwala as he introduced the audience to the first episode of SA's version of the popular UK pitching show. The rules of the Den are simple: entrepreneurs have three minutes to pitch and the Dragons interrogate them. They have to get the full amount requested or leave empty handed. Tough crowd, no? We have already met the Dragons and we have told you why entering the show is at your own peril. But with these pieces, which...

  • 3 key insights SA’s tech ecosystem can take from Israel

    Mind-set, connectedness and government support are everything when it comes to building and sustaining a far reaching tech culture set to breed innovations across the globe. If it is a key imperative for tech businesses to replicate their business models and product innovations on an international scale, some key insights and lessons can be learnt from Israel, dubbed ‘the start-up nation’ who has successfully built an intimate tech culture and community with a far reaching global impact. 1. Connectedness Everyone in the tech world in Israel is connected. They talk, they engage and they discuss – it is essentially one big community...

  • Seed Academy is offering R2-million training for tech entrepreneurs

    Beginning on 30 September 2014, Seed Academy, a school of entrepreneurs, will offer tech entrepreneurs R2-million worth of training for free. “We hope to attract those in the technology space but we are open to any compelling businesses and business ideas,” says Lara Rosmarin, the CEO of Seed Academy. The training will take place after hours once a week over a period of 10 weeks. Each course is valued at R16 000. Emerging entrepreneurs are equipped to either start their own businesses or to take their business to the next level. And after the training the entrepreneurs will be offered support for...

  • 5 ways peer-to-peer lending is changing the world [SPONSORED]

    Tweet, Hashtag, Like, Poke, Comment. Social media has opened the world up to a totally new way of interacting. It is this brave, new world that has brought about a shift in thinking – on every level. Peer-to-peer lending is one of these shifts. Take a look at the 5 ways peer-to-peer lending is changing your world today: 1. Unconventional Peer-to-peer lending is disruptive in every way; challenging the financial system and giving you more information about your money. By going down an unconventional route we are creating new ways for your money to grow. You can now leverage your...

  • 14 innovative Korean companies you need to know about [GMV]

    Think Korea's tech scene extends only as far as Samsung and LG? Think again. We've already told you about how instant messaging platform KakaoTalk managed to accumulate hundreds of millions of users and shown you some of the startups from that country trying to disrupt their way onto the world stage, but there's plenty more innovation coming out of the East Asian country. One attempt to highlight this is the GMV Innovation Awards, part of the Global Mobile Vision conference in Seoul. The awards were judged by a panel of international journalists (including this writer) across a variety of categories...

  • Data and transport app GoMetro wins Get in the Ring 2014 Africa finals

    South Africa's GoMetro has recently been named the winning African startup by Get In The Ring (GITR) in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The transport and data app has been on a roll of late, recently named one of the top ten startups of DEMO Africa 2013 and as well as PwC's Vision to Reality Awards recently. Speaking to Ventureburn, Justin Coetzee, the founder of GoMetro, notes the massive confidence boost this recent win brings to the three-year-old Cape Town-based company: "This is a massive validation for the ability to come up with an idea and build it at the tip of Africa that...

  • Cape Talk, Talk Radio 702 announce Small Business Awards winners

    The Cape Talk Small Business Awards and Radio 702 Small Business Awards winners have been announced, with leather goods manufacturer Research Unit taking home top honours and the Cape and textbook service Book Express claiming the Gauteng prize. In the Cape, the budding company lead confectionery maker Sweet Temptations Toffees and holiday rental service Perfect Hideaway in second and third respectively. Gauteng saw Scimatics Solutions -- tuition service -- and Tutuka Motor Lab -- an auto body repair centre -- follow Book Express home. Research Unit is a tiny company out of Cape Town, run by a husband and wife team....

  • Disrupt everything: 11 exciting Kenyan startups worth your time right now

    We love Kenya. So much so that we recently headed to the East African country for some fun times with startups. Ahead of the trip, we thought we would list some noteworthy startups. How do you pick 11 great startups to write about? You reach out to the community. And the community delivered. By no means is this the definite list of Kenyan startups, but these are ones our community loves. Kenya has long been at the forefront of tech innovation in Africa and we are excited to get more involved in that community, so please tell us which startups you...

  • Over launches Quick: the ‘fastest app’ to add text to photos

    We've covered Over numerously in the past, listing some inspirational uses of its software, but now the Cape Town startup is launching an all new app dubbed Quick -- a free app for adding text to images. Over's eponymous app found acclaim and massive popularity Stateside and allowed creative users to add filters, memorable quotes and tinker with the snap. So far it boasts over 9 million iOS downloads. Quick, as the company (and the name) notes, is more about getting your images out there, quickly. "People put text on photos to accomplish a myriad of tasks; selling things on Craigslist,...

  • Say hello to Ventureburn’s top 5 Startup Battle finalists

    Ventureburn is announcing the top five finalists of our Startup Battle. In partnership with Ford and Social Media Week Johannesburg, we will be giving away R25 000, as well as some other prizes, to the most innovative problem-solver that can woo our panel of judges. Ventureburn Editor Michelle Atagana says that although we've been impressed by the amount of exciting feedback from South Africa's startup community, deciding on the top five has been difficult: "This has been very exciting for us. We received a number of applications and the process of picking the top five was quite difficult but we really...