The two-year agreement was brought forth after Custos ended a round of financing with high-profile investors which included Innovus Technology Transfer, an undisclosed South African Angel Investor, and a New York-based Currency Group.
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“TIA has again shown their commitment to support earlystage technology businesses in South Africa. The funding agreement will allow Custos to accelerate product development, while simultaneously freeing up resources to spend on bringing the product to the widest possible market,” said CEO of Custos, G J. Van Rooyen.
“Custos is a good example of the kind of innovation ventures for which TIA was established to provide support, where science and technology advancements are the basis for creating new products, services and global enterprises,” concurred the head of ICT Strategic Technology at TIA, Segopotso Moshapo.
Custos, based in Stellenbosch, is a spin-out from the University of Stellenbosch and is a part of the LaunchLab business accelerator, using Bitcoin blockchain, they’re creating tracking technology to rapidly discover individuals infringing on copyright content. Currently, Custos is collaborating with Erudition Digital, a UK-based company, to bring their digital publishing solutions to e-books.
“We are fortunate to have raised close to R12m for Custos to date, most of it from local investors. The founding shareholders still own more than 73% of the business, which allows us to apply our available capital to the original vision – keeping creative industries sustainable in an era where almost all distribution channels are becoming digital,” said Van Rooyen.
The injection from TIA will go toward the hiring of new technical talent expanding their team. “The TIA deal allows us to immediately grow our team. Their funding specifically supports technical development, and that is where we need to focus now,” concluded Van Rooyen.
Featured image: Mr. Dtb via Flickr