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All posts tagged "Startups"

  • SA downgrade ‘nearly irrelevant’ to startups – Michael Jordaan

    South Africa’s downgrade to junk status earlier this month by two rating agencies may have depressed Michael Jordaan, one of the country's most respected venture capital (VC) investors, but he believes the downgrade is "nearly irrelevant" to startups. "In this tough economic climate it is useful that one of the advantages of startups as opposed to big business is that the macro economics are nearly irrelevant as it is far more important for the startup to first succeed in its narrowly defined micro-market," said Jordaan in an email to Ventureburn. However, in a wide-ranging interview, the former head of First National Bank, now the...

  • 9 things we learnt at Startup Grind Cape Town

    The latest Startup Grind Cape Town event took place on Friday, featuring Monique Woodard of 500 Startups. The fireside chat covered a wide variety of topics, such as black entrepreneurs, her personal journey and more. Interestingly enough, the finals of the 500 Startups/Geeks on a Plane Africa pitching competition took place at Startup Grind as well. Here are all the notable quotes and happenings that took place at the event. FinChatBot won US$1000 for pitching competition FinChatBot walked away as the winner of the pitching battle (winning US$1000), with DroneClouds in second place and Mobenzi in third. The other two finalists received...

  • ‘Shortage of VC funding, not of black entrepreneurs’

    The US has no shortage of black entrepreneurs. The shortage rather is one of funding for black entrepreneurs, says Monique Woodard of 500 Startups. Woodard, speaking at Startup Grind Cape Town last week Friday as part of a fireside chat, made the statement in response to a question from an audience member who asked why there was a shortage of black entrepreneurs. "So, I don't think there's... comparatively, in the space... there's not a huge shortage of black entrepreneurs. There's a shortage of black entrepreneurs getting VC funding," Woodard told the audience. The 500 Startups representative and Black Founders co-founder expanded on the topic. Monique Woodard of 500 Startups says...

  • Geeks on a Plane looking for 10 startups to pitch in Cape Town

    Following last week's announcement that startup programme Geeks on a Plane is coming to Africa in March, 10 startups will also be able to pitch their startup at the Cape Town event. Each startup will only have five minutes to pitch their business. Those selected will receive mentorship and feedback from the 500 Startups team, which consists of startups, investors, and executives, as well as angel investors and other players part of the tour. The programme is looking for startups that are generating initial revenue, along with building scalable tech-enabled companies for local and international markets. Those in the seed and idea stages will...

  • 17 South African startups to watch out for in 2017 [Digital All Stars] [update]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. In this piece we take a look at all of the interesting (and one or two controversial) changes that SA startups have gone through in 2016. With that in mind, we compiled a list of companies to watch for in the year ahead. BitX / Luno Easily one of the most popular Bitcoin wallets worldwide, BitX launched out of...

  • Startup Grind: 12 things we learnt from Yoco’s Katlego Maphai

    The second Startup Grind Cape Town event of the year took place on Monday night at Workshop 17, featuring Katlego Maphai, co-founder of Yoco. The event saw Maphai cover a wide variety of topics, including the formation of Yoco, challenges associated with the company and more. So what did we learn? Working on Jumia gave him the required confidence Maphai said that while working at RocketInternet, he was sent (along with current Yoco CFO Bradley Wattrus) to Nigeria to work on online retailer Jumia. "That was a gruelling experience... really tough... And I think after that, him and I just...

  • SA sports scale-up achieves self-exit from VC

    A scale-up developer of ball tracking in sports, FlightScope, has bought itself out from its VC partner. In 2006, HBD Venture Capital, which is owned by Mark Shuttleworth and managed by VC firm Knife Capital, became a funding partner for the company. "We saw tremendous potential in applying world-class technology to bridge the gap between the passion and science of sports," said CEO of Knife Capital Eben van Heerden in a press release to Ventureburn. When Ventureburn asked a Knife Capital representative about the deal, they said the amount of the exit could not be disclosed, though they did receive a desired ROI. A clause...

  • Chivas Regal announces 10 finalists for The Venture pitching show

    Whisky brand Chivas Regal has announced the 10 SA contestants taking part in its social entrepreneur pitching competition, The Venture. It will air on Mzansi Magic on 26 January at 6:30pm. The aim of the competition is to invest US$1-million in startups that create positive change. "Over the last two years, we have shown our belief in and commitment to this philosophy by awarding USD2 million to start-ups globally that 'do well by doing good', because we believe purpose and profit can coexist," says Marketing Manager of Scotch Whiskies at Chivas Regal, Shelley Reeves, in a press release to Ventureburn. The winner will receive R350 000...

  • Report: African tech startups receive funding boost in 2016

    The number of African tech startups receiving funding in 2016 has risen by almost 17% compared to the previous year, a new report found. The second annual Disrupt Africa Tech Startups Funding Report found that 146 African startups raised US$129.1-million in 2016. The report clarified that, while the number of startups receiving funding has increased, the actual amount of funding saw a decline. As for the most popular nations, South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria accounted for just over 80% of funding secured. Fourth-placed Egypt was a fast mover though, seeing 100% fundraising growth. The continent has seen a slew of fintech-related startups...

  • Ventureburn wants to know about your tech startup

    Ventureburn is dedicated to featuring and writing news about startups in emerging markets. In fact, it's our passion to inform our readers about new startups, entrepreneurs doing great things, entrepreneurs not doing such great things, and events. Even with all of our networks and contacts, sometimes there are startups that fall through the cracks. In this case, we'd love to know about them. If you think your startup (or someone else's) has some interesting news then please let us know. The company needs to be tech-based, or using technology in an interesting way, and be situated in an emerging market (such as...