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  • I’M IN Accelerator finally under way, here are the startups in the first cohort

    After a short delay in finalising applications, IDF Capital's I’M IN Accelerator has kicked off with 10 startups having been selected, IDF Capital executive director Polo Leteka told Ventureburn. The programme aimed at building high growth black-owned tech startups. The three-month long programme kicked off this month and participants are currently undergoing a needs analysis and assistance in developing a growth strategy. I'M IN Accelerator will offer seed funding of between R150 000 and R160 000, in exchange participating startups will give up between 1.25% and 6% equity stake The programme includes two rounds of funding. In the first round participants will receive a minimum of R150 000 and each...

  • Company Office

    New integrated payment, POS solution allows retailers to transact in 2 seconds

    The South African financial technology company that brought card-payment systems to smaller businesses as far back as 2008 has just announced a new integrated payment solution that will benefit franchise store owners, larger independent retailers and franchise owners. Sureswipe is SA’s first independent payment service provider to offer a fully integrated payment solution with acquiring services. Paul Kent, managing director of Sureswipe, says: “Our new Integrated Payments product has been developed for higher volume businesses that use a Point-of-Sale system. It reduces manual hours spent on reconciliations, makes customer payments quicker and safer, and cuts both costs and complexity. We have brought functionality...

  • SA SME Fund is not aimed at venture capital sector, says CEO

    South Africa's R1.5-billion SA SME Fund is not aimed at boosting the country's nascent venture capital (VC) sector, but rather at helping already profitable mid-sized companies to grow and create jobs, says the fund's CEO Quinton Dicks. “It’s not a venture capital fund – it’s not the SA Venture Capital Fund,” said Dicks (pictured above) in a call yesterday with Ventureburn. In the call he revealed that the fund had commenced with screening funding partners and is likely by the end of this year to complete due diligence work on five funds it plans to co-invest with. In a recent interaction with Dicks, tech entrepreneurs voiced their concern...

  • Tech startups must spend more time on honing target market says MTN manager

    Tech entrepreneurs must spend more time developing a complete value proposition for the apps and web platforms that they pitch to corporates, says MTN's general manager of digital commercial management Mophethe Moletsane. "Unfortunately, most startups do the work on the solution, but are quick to rush to their demos without contextualising the market opportunity," says Moletsane. He says aligning the app, widget or platform to the strategic initiatives is everything for a big organisation. Unfortunately, most startups do the work on the solution, but are quick to rush to their demos without contextualising the market opportunity, says MTN manager Read more below on the advice he has for startups...

  • Female-only YHER Accelerator to offer participants two prizes of $20 000 each

    Australian accelerator Spark* has opened applications for YHER , a week-long Johannesburg-based acceleration programme aimed at female entrepreneurs in Africa which it aims to launch in November. The first cohort of 15 female founders of early-stage startups from across the continent will take participate in the accelerator programme which will take place between 11 and 17 November in Johannesburg. Two prizes, each of $25 000 Australian dollars ($20 000), will be awarded to participants during the programme. To qualify interested applicants must be running an early-stage startup and be developing solutions that improve the lives of women and girls living in poverty, and must have gained traction...

  • ‘SA Reserve Bank offers no protection for those that take part in ICOs’

    As China's ban on initial coin offerings (ICOs) has lead to renewed concerns over the use of cryptocurrencies, South Africa's Reserve Bank says it offers "no recourse or protection" to consumers involved in ICOs. In response to questions from Ventureburn on whether it is concerned on the legality of ICOs following their banning in China and move to regulate them in the US, the Reserve Bank said in a statement to Ventureburn that it has taken note of regulatory developments surrounding initial coin offerings (ICOs). "In South Africa, cryptocurrencies are not guaranteed by the SARB (SA Reserve Bank), hence offer no recourse or...

  • #cocreate2ACCELERATE announces deal between SA startup Santerno, MEDx

    South African startup Santerno Health & Wellness has signed an agreement to partner with Dutch healthtech startup MEDx eHealthCenter on a healthtech pilot, Duthc initiative #cocreate2ACCELERATE announced in a press release today. The partnership is the first tangible outcome of the #cocreate2ACCELERATE programme, an initiative of the Dutch Consul in South Africa which aims to link Dutch and SA startups. Read more: Dutch consulate announces names of startups for #cocreate2ACCELERATE 2017 The pilot aims to demonstrate how the MEDx Care integrated health technology can make a difference in the simplification of health processes. “We are excited about the partnership between Santerno and MEDx. Both organisations share the common belief...

  • SA startup ProsperiProp delays ICO following China’s ban on token offerings

    South African startup ProsperiProp has delayed by one week its PROPX initial coin offerings (ICO) -- which it planned to run on Friday, 8 September -- following China's decision to ban ICOs in China and the US's moves last month to begin regulating ICOs. The ICO, which will be aimed largely at international investors looking to invest in international property and will use a cryptocurrency created by the company called “PROPX”, will now be run next week Friday (15 September). 'Based on this current market volatility, we have decided to allow the storm to pass before launching our ICO' It follows an announcement last month by ProsperiProp founder and...

  • Adapt or be disrupted, Ran Neu-Ner implores business at Innovation Summit

    Business must adapt or risk being disrupted, marketer and Creative Council group Co-CEO Ran Neu-Ner, told delegates at a Cape Town conference. Speaking at the Innovation Summit at the Cape Town Stadium which kicked off today and runs until Friday, Neu-Ner said all businesses will need to move away from what they presently define themselves as doing and move to become data firms -- if they are to prosper in the future economy. He singles out the example of a recent Nike's sports app: "They got a 100 million users in three months because they started to say 'we're a data...

  • Here’s what you need to know before you apply to Propella’s incubator programme

    Are you running a tech startup in or near Port Elizabeth? Looking to get into an incubation programme? Here's what you need to know about the Propella's business incubator programme. Propella was launched in 2015 through a partnership by business support company Engeli Enterprise Development and Nelson Mandela University owned commercial company Innovolve in an effort to develop tech startups in Nelson Mandela Bay. Propella provides support for startups working in ICT, renewable energy, smart city solutions, energy efficiency and advanced manufacturing sectors Grant Minnie, the senior industrial advisor at Propella, told Ventureburn that startups interested in joining the accelerator need to be aware of the...

  • Tech startups crucial to Pick n Pay’s technology strategy says executive

    South Africa retail giant Pick n Pay has in the last year worked closely with "at least" 10 startups on various projects that have been delivered into the business, says the retailer's deputy CEO Richard van Rensburg. "Tech startups are crucial to Pick n Pay’s technology strategy," Van Rensburg told Ventureburn last week, in a set of emailed responses. He says over half of the retailer's spend on innovation is with startups. "We have recently completed re-platforming all our systems across the group , from in-store point-of-sale (systems) through logistics and distribution, buying, customer loyalty and finance. Our core business systems are up to date and...

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