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  • Nuren, an ecommerce firm for brides and mothers, scores $2m series A from Gobi Partners

    Anyone who’s gotten married will tell you – weddings are stressful. It’s a ton of work and drowning in the details, which can take away all the excitement for what’s supposed to be the best day of your life. That’s why Malaysia-based Nuren wants to simplify the whole planning process for brides-to-be. The startup operates ecommerce sites (Wedding.com.my in Malaysia and Nuren.sg in Singapore) that offer tips and advice on each step, and link you with vendors who can help you with whatever you need. Co-founded by Petrina Goh, Kelvin Leow, Stacey Lee, and Alice Ong, the company also offers consulting...

  • Company Office

    Netflix: What do South Africans think?

    With the announcement of Netflix launching in South Africa a few months ago, it might have seemed like a belated Christmas gift from America. But has the novelty seemingly worn off quicker than one would expect? There are plenty of reasons why the excitement of Netflix in South Africa seems to have died down. For one, there are not many South Africans who are fortunate to enjoy the luxury of cable TV, never mind Netflix. There is also the added hurdle of using the streaming service with limited to no access to the Internet for many and data bundles that do...

  • Nigerian online shopping portal DealDey acquired by Ringler Africa

    Ringier Africa Deals Group has today announced its acquisition of DealDey, one of Nigeria's biggest online shopping platforms. Ringier, a joint venture between Swiss Ringier Africa and South Africa's Silvertree Internet Holdings, also grabbed DealDey's couponing platform Promohub and discovery platform Lyf -- both part of the larger company. This move also comes after Silvertree's South African acquisition of Pricecheck -- a price comparison website based in South Africa. "The DealDey team is excited about joining forces with the newly-formed Ringier Africa Deals Group," explained company CEOs Kehinde Oriola and Etop Ikpe. "It offers great opportunities as DealDey brings a wealth of experience in technology, merchant management and...

  • Looking beyond the fear factor when selling cloud software to startups

    A common misperception is that SMEs using old software could put their companies at risk and that such solutions are based on databases considered to be “antiquated”. Most big service providers maintain a range of platforms – cloud, server and desktop - based on technologies ranging from legacy to cutting-edge. It’s good practice to support customers using your older software as best you can. Even with vendors trying to frighten them into buying new software, many businesses know that these security risks are reasonably small once you quantify them. Those that are concerned should remember Chief Vitalstatistix in the Asterix...

  • MEST opens up entrepreneurial programme to South Africans for first time

    This is pretty cool. South African entrepreneurs can, for the first time, apply to be part of the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST). The announcement comes as the prestigious entrepreneurial school continues its expansion across the African continent, with South Africans joining Ghanaians, Kenyans and Nigerians who wish to spend a year at MEST in Accra to take part in its training programme and launch their own software company, with potential for seed investment opportunities. Admitted applicants receive a full scholarship to a one-year entrepreneurial training program that blends an MBA-type education with hands-on training in software development. During...

  • Dubai’s become an entrepreneurial dreamland: here’s how

    Dubai is a renowned destination for leisure and luxury seekers. With numerous larger-than-life buildings, astounding architecture and top-notch luxury services, it’s nothing short of a tourist’s wonderland. Dubai’s appeal attracts a humungous market because of its central location that ensures year-round traffic form both sides of the globe. It is a natural nesting ground for companies looking to expand and operate in the Middle Eastern and African region, with the world-class infrastructure and communications network and a conducive environment assisting businesses grow every step of the way. The government’s drive to diversify its revenue stream has already driven Dubai far...

  • Seed Academy announces second annual startup survey

    Seed Academy, the Johannesburg-headquartered training, incubation and funding programme, has announced the launch of its second annual startup survey. According to press release sent to Ventureburn, this year's survey aims to build on the 2015 edition to become the largest such undertaking in South African history. “This year, we want to build on the benchmarks established last year by determining the success rates of entrepreneurs in different environments such as urban, township and rural environments," says Donna Rachelson, CEO of Seed Academy. "We will also establish the sectors in which entrepreneurs operate, as well the markets in which they...

  • Finding promise and consistency in turbulent times: lessons from the EU

    The first quarter of 2016 has proven grim for a number of leading markets, most starkly for the European Union. A year ago, the EU grappled with Greece’s sovereign debt crises and that country’s potential exit from the economic bloc. Instead of light at the end of the tunnel, the EU is now faced with the possibility of the UK renegotiating its membership terms — or perhaps leaving the governing consortium entirely. The International Monetary Fund’s forecasts show EU growth flatlining at 1.5 percent in 2015, with only a marginal uptick to 1.6 percent expected in 2016. Those numbers fall...

  • Cape Town’s latest co-working space looks to combine coffee shop buzz with home-style comfort

    Cape Town has plenty of co-working spaces catering to the city's burgeoning startup scene. While there's clearly a need for them, it can sometimes be difficult for them to stand out from each other. But that's exactly what the latest entrant into the space, Work & Co, is looking to do. Work & Co is the brainchild of French born Julien Verspieren, who sold his business in France in 2014, packed up and moved to Cape Town. In France, he was the founder of a recruitment company, and with another partner, grew their staff from two people to 160 people...

  • Fintech startup Momo raises $28m from Standard Chartered’s VC arm, Goldman Sachs

    Vietnam-based fintech startup Momo today announced it obtained US$28 million in series B funding from Standard Chartered Private Equity and global investment bank Goldman Sachs, which is an existing backer. Launched in 2014, Momo is an ewallet and payments app that allows users to pay online and transfer money to each other digitally. At selected stores, the app can be used for cashless payments. The company also has a physical network of over 4,000 over-the-counter agents where people can remit money and avail of other financial services through Momo. Momo claims to process millions of transactions daily for its over 2.5 million...

  • 5 rules for managing people in your startup

    If your small business is to grow and prosper, you need to hire the right people and then manage them in a way that gets the best from them. Even if you are not a natural leader, managing people is a skill that you can learn and improve with practice and with the right advice. Here are a few golden principles for people management in a small business. 1. Learn to delegate The first and sometimes hardest people management lesson for a small business owner to learn is to delegate work to the team. It can be difficult to let go if...