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      Startup news for emerging markets
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      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!


  • 5 Nigerian startups with seriously disruptive capabilities

    ‘Disruptive’ is a powerful word, because it’s not really about a startup that is making money or one that is able to get millions of users. Instead, a disruptive startup is one that is groundbreaking and innovative. Prior to 2015, Nigeria’s startups had largely been founded by developers who had ideas and believed they could make money from such. And so far, several of them have been able to develop tech products that are still profitable – even before the advent of ecommerce.

  • How can South Africa drive youth innovation and entrepreneurship?

    Nearly a third of South Africa’s population is under the age of 14. As things stand, their future is uncertain. The economy is stagnant, the political landscape is shifting, and unemployment is at a record high. It’s possible to turn all that around, but doing so means equipping young people with skills beyond those found in the schooling system creating an environment which doesn’t just see entrepreneurship and innovation as viable options, but as necessities. There was the consensus of a panel on driving innovation among South Africa’s young people at a Road to the Global Entrepreneurship Summit held at Cape...

  • 3 ways to make flexi-time work for your business

    In today’s fast moving and high-pressure world of work, it is near impossible to maintain a modicum of balance. For entrepreneurs and employees at startups and SMMEs, working 12-hour days and over weekends is often par for the course. This leaves little to no time for family members, partners, and relaxing activities outside of work. And as we have seen, the consequences of such a relentless routine can be disastrous: ill health, broken families, burnout, etc. Fortunately, however, new technology tools and platforms are now giving frazzled workers more options. Armed with smart devices and mobile connectivity, many employees can...

  • 3 Organisational structure changes to strengthen your startup’s tech team

    Hiring experienced technologists is difficult. Many are happy in their current positions, and the others are inundated with offers. With software developer employment projected to grow 17% by 2024 — 10% faster than the average occupational growth rate in the US — it’s incumbent upon employers to ensure they stand out from the crowd. The right organizational structure and workplace culture will help them do just that. There are three principles to enact:

  • 10 things we just learned about the Berlin startup scene

    Berlin is one of Europe’s startup hot-spots and is often held up as an example of the cool and at-ease-with-itself contemporary Germany likes to project. That’s all well and good. Being home to large number of startups can give you serious kudos as a city. After all, entrepreneurship is key to building a country’s future. But what about the people who work at those startups? What kind of salaries are they earning? How do they feel about the positions they’re in? And do they face similar problems to people in other startup hubs around the globe?

  • Real estate startup Property Fox wants to save you money when selling houses

    There’s a new real estate startup hitting the South African market. Property Fox aims to save customers over 80% of traditional estate agent costs by offering a 1.5% commission rate. In a press release sent to Ventureburn, co-founder Ashley James says: “We saw a gap in the market to help people sell their houses for a fraction of the cost, while simultaneously offering more exposure in the market.” The company launched in April with co-founder Crispin Inglis.

  • How a Kenyan health startup is transforming the lives of families — one SMS at a time

    Your children’s health is probably the most important thing in the world to you. But how do you know if your child is developing the way they should be? Even in the UK where there’s the NHS, innumerable child development internet sites, or a gazillion baby books, it can be a difficult time. But imagine living in rural Kenya, where health clinics might be difficult to access, there’s no internet and in some cases you might not even read or write. That’s the problem Nominet Trust 2015 winners, Totohealth is solving, and it is solving it very well indeed.

  • Recruitment marketplace OfferZen sees fantastic growth in SA dev sector

    Since Ventureburn last caught up with recruitment marketplace OfferZen in January, the Cape Town-based company has been flaunting some impressive growth. It has strengthened its team from three to nine in order to expand its operations to Gauteng and ultimately corner SA’s software developer job market. OfferZen is an online jobs marketplace for software developers. Both the companies seeking developers and the developers themselves apply to be listed on the website. Once accepted, companies send interview requests to developers, specifying salary, and benefits upfront. The developer can then choose whether they accept the interview request or not. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • MoveThisStuff: the startup helping you find the right mover for your budget

    Moving, whether it's down the road or to the other side of the country, can be pretty damn stressful. Quite aside from the pain of leaving somewhere you may have come to regard as your home, there's the hassle of finding movers who'll treat your stuff with respect. One company trying to make the second of those things a little easier is MoveThisStuff. Headquartered in Johannesburg, the startup helps people find movers based on factors including how far they're moving, what kind of stuff they're looking to move, and what kind of movers they're looking for. Once they've put...

  • Entrepreneurs, want a high-funded crowsourced product? Make a board game

    Over the past decade or so, board games have been making a serious comeback in the mainstream. These aren’t your typical Monopoly or Cluedo titles, which is now a cliche to say, but in-depth, strategic, and beautifully crafted products of enjoyment. Looking at the list of most-funded projects on crowd-funding website Kickstarter yields some interesting results. Sure, there’s a range of electronics, video games, and even music, but in between those are board games. Those collections of cardboard and plastic tokens can net you a tidy funding amount. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • What a Rwandan motorcycle taxi startup can teach Uber

    With its relentless expansion, you'd be forgiven for thinking that Uber is an indomitable force. But there's another transport market, African motorcycle taxis ('motos'), where Uber will have to go a long way to beat the leaders in the field -- Safemotos -- a fast moving startup based in Kigali, who were recognised in the 2015 NT100. I was lucky enough to meet with Nash and Peter, a passionate and dynamic founder team, while visiting Kigali. Other than the obvious financial potential of the SafeMotos, they explained how it's addressing a clear social need for improving motorcycle...

  • 5 big business lessons you can learn from Star Trek

    Gene Roddenberry had a dream. The result of that dream was Star Trek. Roddenberry's concept was embodied in a future where mankind had, after eons of trial and error, finally grown up. In three hundred years the pettiness of racism, greed, war (among Earth people) and drug abuse crimes have mostly gone the way of the dodo. Warp drive opened the universe to the children of the Earth and showed them the diversity of life elsewhere; and the children, finally, matured. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • 10 great merchant account providers (that aren’t PayPal and Google Wallet)

    When your ecommerce dreams are new and you aren’t yet sure how to run an online store, it makes sense that you would use the most popular online payment services providers on the web. Indeed, Paypal and Google Wallet offer some interesting and exciting merchant services when you have no clue what you need or how you want your shop to function. However, after a few months, most people in the ecommerce industry become frustrated with the titans of the internet: Paypal is outrageously expensive, Google’s customer service is atrocious, and both have clunky interfaces that rarely mesh well...

  • 5 important indicators of performance every small business should track

    If you don’t measure your small business’s performance, you won’t be able to improve it. There are a range of indicators that you can use to measure your company’s growth and help you to determine whether your business is on track, as well as help you to meet your business goals. Here are a few indicators to determine how well your business is doing, as well as some tools that you can use to help. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • 8 key factors affecting your ecommerce platform’s SEO

    For each and every website owner, SEO is the most critical aspect. However, very few know its importance as far as ecommerce marketplaces are concerned. Studies have suggested that 44% of all online purchases begin with an online search. This means that every other order placed on your ecommerce store originates from search results. Despite this, most business owners are not aware of necessary SEO features while looking for an ecommerce platform. While some of these platforms offer just basic SEO features, others charge a premium for add-on options. Read more on Ventureburn.