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  • Nigeria’s ‘underperforming’ food apps leave many questions

    It's an open secret that food apps are not as popular as ecommerce and payment apps in Nigeria, despite the love for food uniting the people more than music and sports. A few weeks ago, I heard of the ambitious goal of a re-launched app called Bukka. It's pitched as a person-to-person food app that uses seamless connections to link cooks to their clients, connecting users to all available chefs in their neighbourhood and giving them access to a large variety of cuisine. They likened the way the app functions to the way Uber connects riders with drivers. They're so confident of the new app's success that they claim it would...

  • Company Office

    Don’t let expansion ruin a great company culture

    As a young company that primarily serves informal markets, we have quickly expanded into new regions on the African continent. While South Africa remains a key focus – and our base – we have invariably needed to establish a presence in other fast growing markets. In practice, this has meant that our management team spends a great deal of time away from the rest of the team – and working remotely. Without a doubt, this scenario is impacting the culture of the business – as the core structure shifts from a centralised management system to a more distributed model....

  • 5 factors that differentiate fintech in Africa

    Fintech in Africa, as elsewhere in the world, is big business. Investment is flooding into startups providing innovative ways of offering financial services. Startups in the fintech space took on almost 30 per cent of the total funding raised by African tech businesses in 2015. Globally, growth in the sector is huge, with US$19.1 billion invested globally last year, a 106 per cent jump from 2014. But the fintech space in Africa is different to that in developed economies, with a whole raft of opportunities presented by unique factors that are not found elsewhere in the world, says Wim van der...

  • Software startups: here’s how you can succeed before you start

    Starting a business based on a software product is no easy task. If you're an entrepreneur with all the passion for the business aspects of your new endeavour and the promise of the millions in profit driving you on, don’t be deterred by the mammoth task that is software development - one of the most important elements of your venture. Almost daily, our team is asked by individuals with grand ideas (ridiculous, novel or brilliant) on how to get started with a software-based business. Not one to pass up an opportunity to uplift the development community (and tech-related start-ups) we’ve...

  • 5 security tips for anyone wanting to start an ecommerce store

    An increasing number of people with an entrepreneurial mindset are setting up ecommerce sites, thanks to increased access to the Internet and mobile services, a growing middle class and the availability of online tools that are easy to use. A McKinsey & Company report recently revealed that ecommerce could account for 10% of retail sales in Africa's largest economies by 2025. Unfortunately, this growth is also attracting the interest of cyber criminals, ready to take advantage of unsuspecting Small & Medium Business owners. But if you use the right tools - setting up an online store can be incredibly...

  • New mentorship programme aims to empower disabled entrepreneurs

    There's not a whole lot of tech in this one, but we thought it was worth sharing anyway. South African entrepreneurial organisation The Hope Factory has launched a programme aimed specifically at empowering disabled entrepreneurs. The programme, which will be based in KwaZulu-Natal, is meant to help the physically disabled develop personal and business skills to grow and improve their businesses. The 10 entrepreneurs selected for it come from a variety of different fields. "As a Business Mentor, walking hand-in-hand with an entrepreneur on their journey to success and prosperity, through the highest high’s and low’s and ever...

  • 7 of the best SEO training courses to market your startups in 2016

    If you’re a startup, you often need to keep your spending as lean as possible. What better way to do so than to learn the basics of search engine optimisation yourself? These 7 courses, conferences, and guides are there to point you in the direction of some of the great resources out there. Coursera Coursera teamed up with some of the top universities and organisations to provide access to world-class education through online courses. Stanford, Princeton and Yale are just a few of the universities they've partnered with. Interested students have the option of taking courses absolutely for free. It's also possible to...

  • Here’s what young entrepreneurs need to know about managing older employees

    Being an entrepreneur today is very different from the way it was in our parents’ and grandparents’ days. In countries with ‘Western’ cultures, the young adults’ world is also vastly different from that of older generations. But because we often need to do business with older people, this has implications for how we relate to, and work with them. Research into the attitudes and expectations of people born during the second half of the 20th century suggest that they can be categorised roughly into one of two groups: Millennials and Generation Xers. Millennials -- people now in their early-20s to mid-30s --...

  • Cape Town VC Llew Claasen appointed executive director of Bitcoin Foundation

    The Bitcoin Foundation has appointed Cape Town venture capitalist Llew Claasen as its executive director. The appointment was announced during the Blockchain Training Conference in Toronto, Canada, on 20 June. Claasen was elected by a board of directors on 14 June. "I'm looking forward to leading the Bitcoin Foundation going forward.  There is an amazing opportunity for the organisation to help the Bitcoin ecosystem.  In the coming weeks I’ll be working closely with the board, membership, transition team and various stakeholders to create the best plan for success possible," wrote Claasen in a press release on the Bitcoin Foundation website. Claasen is managing partner...

  • Startup focus: Lentus-H wants to change the world through water [update]

    Update: correction on Hippo Water Roller pricing. Water in developing countries is problematic. The availability and cleanliness of this resource are just some of the challenges people face. For the makers of Lentus-H, the problem of transporting clean water is one they hope to answer. Globally, 783-million people do not have access to safe, clean water, with 37% of those living in Sub-Saharan Africa. With statistics this high, there are a number of organisations and programs focused on improving access to clean water. These initiatives take time and while plans are hatched, alliances negotiated and the occasional pipe laid, there are women...

  • Amplify hopes to strike gold in Nigeria with recurrent payments

    2016 is fast becoming a payment-focused year in Nigeria’s tech ecosystem considering the numerous updates in the ecosystem and the launch of new platforms, services, and the rejuvenation of old ones. The question being asked by many stakeholders is “what’s it about payment in Nigeria?” Earlier this month, yet another payment startup launched in Nigeria to offer payment services, it’s called Amplify and its uniqueness is that it is focused on recurrent payment. The startup was incubated and enjoying the support of MEST Incubator. In an exclusive interview with Segun Adeyemi, Co-Founder of Amplify, he said in spite of the...