One of the exciting things at Ventureburn in 2015 was visiting startups in their offices — be they shared spaces, artsy dens or a cluttered mess. Apart from capturing images of these liars of innovation, we sat down with some of the most intriguing startup founders and spoke to them about their ventures and the industry they operate in.
As you sit at home during these December holidays, contemplating quitting your job and starting a business, these podcasts can offer much needed personal stories from startups founders.
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1. Special Podcast #1: Jacques Coetzee chats with Mark Forrester from WooThemes
Earlier this year we witnessed one of South Africa’s greatest success stories to date. A South African tech outfit was acquired by Automattic, which is the brain company behind one of the world’s most popular website builders, WordPress.org. Shortly after the announcement, Ventureburn sat down with co-founder and CEO Mark Forrester from WooThemes to chat about all the ins and outs about the deal.
2. Special Podcast #7: Trevor Gosling, LulaLend CEO, talks fintech and SA finance
LulaLend is described as South Africa’s first and only online, automated short-term business funding solution. Graham van der Made spoke to Trevor Gosling, to find out a little bit more about what LulaLend is really trying to accomplish in the buzzing fintech space.
3. Thought Leader Friday #2: Sarah Rice, Batstone founder, speaks about purpose in businesses
Sarah Rice is the founder of Batstone and a technology communications specialist with over a decade’s worth of experience. Rice also ran the IT focused PR agency, Sentient Communications, for almost nine years before shutting it down at the end of 2011. She went on to work with Christo Davel at 22seven. She was also VP: Communications at Mxit. In this podcast Sarah talks about finding purpose in business, closing down a company, finding love in strange places and why she doesn’t work with people who have not been to therapy. It’s really interesting, trust us.
4. Special Podcast #5: Simon Hartley, Co-Founder of Wumdrop
Following the announcement of its latest round of investment, Ventureburn interviewed Simon Hartley, who’s the co-founder of the very trendy on-demand courier startup, WumDrop. In the interview, we chat to Hartley about WumDrop’s inception and the success of its employee equity policy to attract talented developers. Hartley also hints at some of the on-demand courier and delivery startup’s up-coming features and where the company sees itself in the future.
5. Special Podcast #4: Kobus Ehlers, Co-founder of Snapscan
Payment app SnapScan today boasts over 20 000 merchant clients, ranging from parking marshals to restaurants. While user numbers aren’t disclosed, it’s growing much faster than the merchant clients’. To hear his thoughts on South Africa’s ever-changing payments landscape, Ventureburn chatted with co-founder Kobus Ehlers. We talk about his transition from researcher to entrepreneur and SnapScan’s ambitions to find new ways to improve payments in South Africa.
6. Thought Leader Friday #1: Trevor Wolfe, MD of Springleap, speaks about agencies and startups
South Africa’s Springleap fits the bill of a startup-turned-agency rather well. While the company started out as a platform crowdsourcing T-shirt designs, it pivoted in 2015 to leverage its global community of 800 000 creatives to fulfil other agency needs. We sat down with the company’s latest director Trevor Wolfe to talk about Springleap’s pivot, current business model and where all these fit in with South Africa’s industry and abroad.
7. Special Podcast #9: Ventureburn survey, are startups thriving or struggling?
Following the success of this year’s first Ventureburn Startup Survey, Stuart Thomas together with Jacques Coetzee, Graham van der Made and Andy Walker chat about some of the interesting findings; from most founders being based in the Western Cape to service-orientated startups more likely to turn profits and the little benefits that exist for startup employees.
8. Special podcast #8: Erika van der Merwe, SAVCA CEO, talks obstacles in SA’s growing VC space
According to a study done by Southern African Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (SAVCA) venture capital is on the rise in South Africa. To further help us get to grips with all the latest facts and figures on the country’s VC scene, Ventureburn sat down with Erika van der Merwe, the CEO of SAVCA.
9. Special Podcast #5: Aisha R. Pandor and Alen Ribic, Co-Founders of Sweepsouth
On-demand cleaning startup SweepSouth co-founders Aisha Pandor and Alen Ribic tell us about their experiences in Silicon Valley after being accepted for the prestigious 500 Startups accelerator. After about three months of being accelerated, the couple also share some of their biggest lessons learned and what the future holds for their trendy company.
10. Special Podcast #2: Elizabeth Gould, codeX CEO and Derrick Kotze, mLab CEO, talk about innovation
Following the launch of Workshop17 in Cape Town, we sat down with Elizabeth Gould, the CEO of programming academy CodeX, and Derrick Kotze who’s the CEO of African developer and startup hub initiative mLabs. In the interview, Gould and Kotze share their insights with Jacques Coetzee about uplifting skill development and creating environments that are empowering South African developers and entrepreneurs.