IBM South Africa, Tshimologong Precinct to hold acceleration bootcamp [Updated]

IBM South Africa plans to next month run a six-week long acceleration bootcamp next month together with Joburg incubator Tshimologong Precinct.

The bootcamp is being run as part of IBM’s Equity Equivalence Investment Programme. Under the Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) codes multinationals that are reluctant to give away ownership can provide the equivalent value in training black people or assisting black entrepreneurs.

The Startup Accelerator bootcamp will take place from 8 October to 16 November and is designed to enable the development of growth-stage tech startups through a series of short, intensive and rigorous modules.

Applications for the bootcamp close on 5 October. About 40 startups will be shortlisted for a pre-selection pitch event which will see between 10 and 12 startups get selected to participate in the bootcamp.

In a statement yesterday (11 September) Tshimologong Precinct digital enterprise development manager Shaun Randles said growing tech startups has “long been a focus” of the precinct.

The six-week long accelerator bootcamp will culminate in a pitch event where participants stand to win up to R500 000 in products and services

“This bootcamp is centred on investment, one of the critical elements of any growing business. We look forward to working with the teams to make a bottom-line investment in tomorrow’s future technology leaders,” added Randles.

Modules will address skills, resources, infrastructure and technology growth within startups. The bootcamp will culminate in a round of pitching at an awards event during the Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Those selected stand to win up to R500 000 in products and services. To secure the highest investment amount, participants will have to demonstrate through an investment proposal how they will use investments to accelerate their businesses.

In addition to convincing the judging panel, comprised of industry experts and IBM executives, on why the company should invest in their startup, the investment proposal must show that the company is on a growth trajectory based on financials that demonstrate an increase in revenue and job creation.

To be considered for the bootcamp, startups must have been registered for at least a year, be black-owned and managed, and generate between R120 000 and R50-million per year. In addition, the startup’s founders must be actively involved in the business.

Learn more about the bootcamp, eligibility criteria and important dates here.

Editor’s note (12 September 2018): An earlier version of the article erroneously stated that 80 participants will be selected for the bootcamp. However, only 40 startups will be shortlisted to attend a pre-selection pitch event, after which between 10 and 12 startups will be selected to participate in the bootcamp. Ventureburn regrets the error. 



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