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Digital All Stars 2016: Celebrating SA’s Digirati

Digital All Stars is a series of 24 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.

Over the course of the 12 Months, you’ll be able to find links to all of the articles on this hub.

Before then, take a look at the video we’ve produced detailing the concept behind Digital All Stars.

20 of South Africa’s biggest YouTube personalities by the numbers

South African YouTubers youtube

Sure, data might be expensive and smartphones haven’t reached everyone just yet, but that hasn’t stopped South Africans from taking to video in a massive way over the past several years.

We aren’t just a nation of YouTube viewers though, because we also play host to a fascinating variety of South African YouTubers. So who are the biggest players in South Africa then? And what constitutes being a big YouTube personality?

Lists like these often degenerate into a case of “who knows who” rather than a true gauge of popularity. But we decided to stick to the numbers (specifically October’s subscriber count), using SocialBlade to figure out the top YouTuber personalities in South Africa. To be clear, we’re only looking at individuals or duos and aren’t listing YouTube channels backed by companies and TV channels.

As for SocialBlade, it pulls views and subscribers via YouTube’s own API, although there is a slight delay between YouTube’s updated stats and SocialBlade.

Top 31 entrepreneurs under 40 making waves in South Africa

There’s a variety of talent in the South African startup space. Each and every year we’re seeing more and more interesting startups coming out of the country.

In this article, we feature some of the best SA entrepreneurs under 40 who are doing big things*, whether they’re gaining traction, have several companies under their belt, or have incredible rounds of funding. The names featured are listed in no particular order and multiple entrepreneurs in the same startup have been grouped together.

32 of the most influential women in SA digital marketing

While there hasn’t been any recent research on the matter, you only have to go to a few industry events to see that digital marketing in South Africa is still dominated by white males. In the words of one of the panelists we interviewed for this piece, it is “a truly untransformed industry”.

It is therefore worth celebrating the women, especially those of colour, who have risen to positions of influence in the space.

While the definition of digital marketing has become increasingly broad, for the purposes of this article we’ve only included women who are either actively involved in the digital marketing agency space, or who have digital marketing as their primary remit. Major players at publishing houses and PR agencies have therefore been excluded. They will, instead, be featured in future articles more relevant to their positions.

Even within those limitations, the women featured in this list hold a wide variety of positions and work everywhere from the world’s biggest social network, to industry bodies and the country’s digital agency powerhouses.

18 SA gaming startups you should know about

Gaming development has been growing in South Africa over the years and is growing into a multi-million Rand industry.

There is a large community around game development, with groups such as MakeGames SA holding monthly meetings for discussions, with Wits and UCT having courses in, or featuring, video game development.

In this article, we will feature some of the best video game startups and entrepreneurs South Africa has to offer*, whether they’re developing games for themselves or as outsourced work. The names featured are listed in no particular order.

26 Fintech startups you absolutely need to know about

digital-all-stars-fintech-cover-image-2

Fintech has become a buzzword in recent years. It largely represents startups changing the way money and financial services are handled, by both businesses and corporates. Their developments can be as subtle as the payment gateway used when purchasing your next Blu-ray, to the app that helps pay for your parking.

They are disrupting the traditional banking systems by offering consumers and businesses better offerings while improving on standard services as well.

In the article, we feature some of the best fintech startups South Africa has to offer*, whether they lie in the business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) sectors, or fall in-between. The startups feature in no particular order.

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