11 top African tech startups to watch, says Seedcamp

Seedcamp, a European micro-seed fund that invests in early stage startup companies, has selected 11 South African technology startups to possibly attend the Seedcamp Week programme held in September in London, UK, where they will be in line for a potential €50 000 investment.

Seedcamp, in conjunction with the Tech4Africa conference, put out a call for applications for funding and received more than 40 entries from technology startups across South Africa.

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The selected African entrepreneurs will have a rare opportunity to pitch their businesses at a group of people connected to powerful investors, mentors and startups throughout EMEA, with one team being chosen to take part in Seedcamp Week in London.

Seedcamp offers standard investments of €30,000-€50,000 to selected companies and connects next generation developers and entrepreneurs from a network of over 400 top-tier industry mentors.

The 11 selected startups include:

1. 10Layer: The most feature-complete, competent and customisable open source content management system for serious publishers and media houses.

2. Cobi Interactive: An incubator for developing mobile software ideas. Cobi focuses on investing in areas with varying degrees of risk – contract mobile software development, partnerships and their own products.

3. Cognician: The original thinking guide. A software application that automates complex intellectual tasks by asking you a range of intelligent, thought-provoking questions.

4. Cred: A micropayments and subscriptions service that allows you to monetise your text, audio or video content. The Cred API can be deployed with any content management system and allows for the purchase and redemption of Cred at content partners.

5. Feeperfect: Permitting any user to find the mobile contact number of anyone registered on iYam.mobi, using either SMS or the web. Feeperfect are building, and permitting anyone to build, quality SMS services people are willing to pay for.

6. FloCash: The first cross border Pan African payment network offering basic financial services to the un-banked masses, the platform of choice for facilitating e-commerce and drive the exchange of ideas, people and services between nations.

7. GetaGreatBoss: We enable great managers to showcase their management strength in order to attract talent and boost their own careers.

8. Obami: A web-based communication and collaboration platform that’s been developed for use within, and between schools. Obami ensures a safe environment for kids to interact with each other and the adults in their lives. Obami, which is free to schools, believes that helping to expand school life beyond the boundaries of the classroom wall will have a significant impact on Africa’s future.

9. iSigned.com: Offers secure, permanent online storage, management and sharing for legal & other important documents. Individuals & businesses can use iSigned to store wills, legal agreements, investment records, etc and share them with other parties securely.

10. Thisarmy: Builds clean, simple & fun web apps.

11. Twangoo: South Africa’s premier group buying club uses the power of the web to create a platform for its members to access exclusive deals at restaurants, spas, lessons, sports facilities, events etc.

Gareth Knight, managing director at Technovated, the company behind Tech4Africa, says: “It seems that for a long while the disconnect between entrepreneurs, angel-funders, early stage funders and established institutional funders, was a chasm too far to cross. I’m delighted that SeedCamp has come to Africa, to address that issue and create a more aspirational and conducive environment for startups and entrepreneurs. The response and quality of applications has been superb and it’s great to see these companies with disruptive ideas coming out of the woodwork. I hope to see them in London soon!”

Seedcamp is running in conjunction with Tech4Africa — a conference targeted at business professionals and technologists from businesses of all sizes, from entrepreneurs and start-up owners through to professionals working at large organisations.

A stellar line-up of international speakers — including speakers from Twitter, Mozilla and Yahoo! – will be presenting at the conference. Clay Shirky — one of the world’s leading thinkers and writers on the social and economic effects of Internet technologies — will be a keynote speaker.

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