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  • Nigerian fintech Lidya raises $6.9m in Series-A round led by Omidyar Network

    Nigerian fintech startup Lidya has announced that it has raised $6.9-million in a Series A round led by Silicon Valley-based philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network. The startup's platform assists small African businesses to manage their funds as well as access credit. The startup was founded in 2016 by Tunde Kehinde, and Ercin Eksin. In an announcement in a statement yesterday (23 May) Lidya said the funding will be used to scale operations in Nigeria, as well as to launch in new markets in Africa, in addition to hiring more staff and expanding the company's loan book. A total of five investors: Alitheia Capital, Accion Venture Lab,...

  • Company Office

    The importance of auditors for businesses that are looking to grow

    Arguably, we've never lived in stranger or more conflicted times. On the one hand, it has never been easier to launch a new business venture or bring a product to market. This is reflected by small business statistics in the UK, with the number of active SMEs in the private sector having increased by 197 000 to a record 5.7-million at the beginning of last year. Despite this, an estimated 96% of all businesses still fail during their first 10 years of trading, as firms continue to do battle with a volatile and strained economic climate. Sure, this figure may be slightly...

  • Visa’s Everywhere Initiative: Past winners on 4 reasons to apply [Sponsored]

    Exposure, partnerships, funding, and access. These are the four main reasons why you should apply for the Visa Everywhere Initiative (VEI), according to past winners of the programme. Just days before entries for the sub-Saharan Visa Everywhere Initiative draw to a close, hear from five past winners -- founders of Loop and Tie, Kompas, QPal, Losant, and Xmore -- why you should definitely apply for the fintech development programme. When evaluating submissions for VEI, Visa focusses on startups that have ideas relevant to its business. In addition, the company considers whether startups have a product in the market, traction with early...

  • Uber Eats acquires SA founded tech firm orderTalk for undisclosed amount

    Uber's food delivery business Uber Eats has acquired SA tech company orderTalk from Knife Capital, the Cape Town based venture capital (VC) firm revealed today (23 May). OrderTalk provides online ordering software to restaurants that integrates with a restaurant's point-of-sale system. Knife Capital's announcement was revealed in a news story by SA tech site TechCentral. The terms of the deal -- including how much Uber Eats paid Knife Capital and orderTalk in the deal -- were not been disclosed. OrderTalk was founded by Hilton Keats in 1998. Today it is based in Dallas, Texas. Uber's food delivery business Uber Eats has acquired 100% of SA tech company orderTalk Knife Capital invested...

  • Market readiness key when investing in startups – 4Di Capital founder [Q&A]

    For a venture capital (VC) fund, finding the perfect investment comes down to not only things such as investing in the “perfect" founders with the “perfect" tech -- but to the market readiness of an investee's product or service. This, says venture capitalist Justin Stanford is probably the most difficult variable to get right when investing in startups. Stanford's Cape Town based VC company 4Di Capital, which he started in 2011, has so far made 14 investments. "Some analysis of thousands of VC investments in the past has shown that market demand during the life of the investment is the most important success criteria....

  • Startups need at least 10x in 5 years to be good investment – VC, angel investors

    Want to get investment from an angel or venture capital (VC) investor? You're going to have be able to grow the valuation of your startup by about 50% year on year and return to investors 10 times what they invested in your company -- all in just five years. Most South African based VCs Ventureburn spoke to this month say they look to return to investors 10 times their initial investment and grow the value of an investment at about 30% to 40% per year for about five years. “To achieve 10X in five years you need to be growing at above 50% year...

  • How Tunisia’s Startup Act is a blueprint for other African policy makers

    Tunisia's new startup act, which was passed last month, is a blueprint for how other African countries could create an enabling environment for innovators and tech startups from the "bottom-up", says a former banker and entrepreneur who helped draft the act. “This legal framework is the result of bottom-up work that was initiated by some of the entrepreneurial ecosystem players," says Walid Hached, COO at Tunis-based co-working space at Cogite. The Tunisia Startup Act includes about a number of measures that aim to encourage entrepreneurship, make it easier to start and end a business, as well as easier to access funding and international markets. The act mandates the Tunisian government...

  • SBC Africa calls for last applications to Cape Town accelerator

    Ahead of tomorrow's deadline for applications to its Cape Town accelerator, Startupbootcamp Africa (SBC) managing director Philip Kiracofe has called on startups to apply to the three-month programme. "The deadline is midnight on Thursday, please apply, it takes 15 minutes to apply," said Kiracofe, speaking yesterday (22 May) on the sidelines of Startupbootcamp (SBC) Africa's final pitching event before tomorrow's deadline for applications. The event -- the Cape Town FastTrack -- was held at Old Mutual's offices in Pinelands, Cape Town. Kiracofe said the FastTrack tour -- which included 19 events in 15 countries in Europe, Middle East and Africa -- had been "amazing". "First of all we did...

  • Facebook to take on Google in Nigeria with new hub, $20 000 accelerator

    The tech startup scene in Nigeria is hotting up -- with the unveiling today by social media site Facebook of NG_Hub in Lagos, Nigeria and a new Facebook accelerator programme which will offer Nigerian startups $20 000 in equity-free funding. The new hub sees Facebook taking on Google's Lagos-based Launchpad Accelerator, which was launched earlier this year. In a press release today Facebook said the hub -- which it will run in partnership with Nigeria's CcHub -- is Facebook's first community hub in Africa. The launch today (with Ime Archibong, vice-president of partnerships at Facebook pictured above) is part of a week-long celebration by the social network which will bring together...

  • Five SA biotech companies to watch in 2018 [Digital All Stars]

    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. Starting a biotech business, like any other startup, is not an easy undertaking. If anything, biotech entrepreneurs appear to face more difficult odds. For example, setting up a simple lab alone can cost more than R5-million. However, despite these barriers to entry, there are a number of SA companies that are doing well, with some even securing customers around the world. Below...

  • Seedstars launches call for African tech startups to enter pitching competition

    One of the world's largest emerging market competitions for tech startups Seedstars World today opened applications to tech startups in Sub-Saharan Africa to apply for its 2018 edition. Local winners will be invited to represent their country at the Regional Summit in Africa and win a trip to Switzerland, to introduce their startup to some of world’s most prominent investors and executives and enjoy the opportunity to win up to $1-million in equity investments and additional prizes. So far Seedstars has held two pitching events in Africa, both earlier this month. In Egypt on-demand home nursing service 7kemma came out tops, while...

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