Startup news

Global startup Easy Taxi bags $40-million in funding

EasyTaxi Transport app, Easy Taxi, has secured US$40-million led by the Russian Phenomen Ventures and German Tengelmann Ventures. Backed by Rocket Internet, the startup operates in Latin America, Africa, Middle East and Asia and is often dubbed the world’s farthest-reaching taxi app. Dennis Wang, co-CEO at Easy Taxi says the new round of Series D funding will be used to help scale operations in existing markets. He explains: “We are very proud to have secured this new round of funding, which will ...


From stores to the streets: SnapScan’s road to a cashless society

SnapScan-example This week, SnapScan rolled its app out to The Big Issue vendors across South Africa, the non-profit magazine that's usually sold at intersections in urban areas. People with the app can now purchase the latest issue by simply taking a photo of a QR code and typing in the amount they want to pay. There's no hassle of fiddling for your wallet or looking for change lying around in the car before the light turns green. The Big Issue vendors ...

Africa, Tencent

WeChat, Dream School partnership brings second screen content to mobile

dreamschool wechat Dream School SA, the prime time series featured on SABC, will transcend the television's square box and push additional content via mobile channels, most notably, WeChat. Partnering with one of the world's fastest growing social networking apps has some merit -- the platform now has 395-million users globally, and an extensive, ever-growing membership in South Africa. Dream School SA, with a viewership topping nearly three million too, has also seen an influx of subscribers to its WeChat account since the move. The ...

Africa, News

PwC Vision to Reality Awards reveals top 10 SA startups

PwC PricewaterhouseCooper (PwC) has just announced the top 10 startup finalists of its Vision to Reality Awards that will be taking part in its three month accelerator programme. In an effort to celebrate dynamic companies, the top 10 finalists are given the opportunity to showcase their innovative companies and gain access to leading advisors and a direct route to seed and venture capital. In essence, the PwC Accelerator wants to help companies make their visions sustainable by making sure they have ...

Africa, Ecommerce

Taking Nigerians cashless: Q&A with PayPal’s business lead for Africa

paypal_logo Nigeria’s 170-million plus population has an estimated 60-million internet users, making it the largest potential market for PayPal of all the countries it has entered in recent months. Before now, attempting to use PayPal in Nigeria would have led to the blocking of your PayPal account, with the service hardly viewing the country in the most favourable light. However, it seems all that is changing, as the country's young professionals with disposable income come online in search of places to spend ...

Startup news

SA entrepreneur’s football fan startup scores a cool US$2.4m in funding

Fanmode You don't really have to know all that much about football to know that it's seriously big business. Some of the figures nonetheless remain mind boggling. Manchester United and Real Madrid each sell around 1.4-million replica jerseys a year, netting them hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. Add in stuff like season ticket sales, match day programmes and paid appearances and you can see why anyone able to tap into the sport's rabid fandom stands to win big. Enter Fanmode. ...

Africa, News

Uber launches in Lagos as it further expands into Africa

Uber2 The popular San Francisco-based car ordering service Uber has just launched in Lagos, Nigeria. This puts Uber's active countries across the globe at 42, and follows positive results after it launched in South Africa in 2013. As it does with all its new expansions, Uber gave the local celebrity -- in this case, hip-hop artist Ice Prince -- a stylish cruise around town. Uber has rolled-out its service to include sedans and luxury SUV's which promotes secure and safe transport ...

Entrepreneurship, Startups

Ideas to Reality: 5 creative ways to quickly validate your product

notes Ideas to Reality is an article series where I take a look at easy tools entrepreneurs can use to get their projects up-and-running. In the previous post, I highlighted a bunch of free tools that can help you build a product prototype. “There’s no marketplace for ideas,” Trevor Owens, entrepreneur and founder of the popular customer validation board Javelin says. So until your product is out there, you’ll never know its real worth. Luckily, with the help of some effective ...


Global accelerator Startupbootcamp announces its top 10 FinTech finalists

Startupbootcamp The international startup competition, Startupbootcamp FinTech, has announced the top 10 finalists to join the popular European accelerators programme. The scope of the event spanning globally, innovative financial technology startups from Africa, Europe and the US have been chosen. Nektarios Liolios, Managing Director at Startupbootcamp FinTech, notes that the accelerator has selected the cream of the crop. He says, “Over the last five months we’ve scoured the planet for the most interesting, innovative and promising FinTech startups. We’ve met over 436 ...

Mobile apps, News

IBM’s driving SA innovation with the Road Buddy safety app

ibm_logo IBM recently announced that its efforts in driving entrepreneurship in South Africa are paying-off. The tech multinational did so by highlighting its role in supporting locally conceptualised app, Road Buddy -- a tool that aims to prevent road collisions. By partnering with IBM's entrepreneurship programme, the app's creators are now looking to target the global market. The app (currently iOS-only) was developed with collaboration between the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and Cape Town based engineers. The Road Buddy ...