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Interviews

  • UberEATS’s David Kitley on expansion plans and more

    UberEATS launched in Cape Town this week, offering a trendy food delivery service to take on the likes of OrderIn and Mr Delivery. What should you expect from the service? Are there any plans for expansion? We interviewed David Kitley of UberEATS South Africa at the Cape Town launch event. UberEATS will launch in the city centre, Atlantic Seaboard, Woodstock and Observatory, but Kitley says that there are plans to expand. "Southern Suburbs is a priority of ours, we're actually working on that at the moment. And then hopefully even expanding to other areas, you know... obviously Constantia... and even looking as...

  • BlackBerry bets big on enterprise mobility in Africa

    BlackBerry might have lost the smartphone market share battle in Africa and elsewhere to Samsung and other OEMs, but the company's multibillion dollar enterprise solution space is still intact according to Nader Henein the regional director, Advanced Security Solutions -- Advisory Division of BlackBerry. In this exclusive interview, Henein sheds more light on mobility for African enterprises, the key components, adoption in Africa and security (especially cybercrimes). According to Henein, enterprises need to go beyond just venturing into digitisation of their operations to embracing a mobile first strategy. "Mobile gives you the ability as a company to answer emails faster than your competitors because you can't be at...

  • On Nigeria’s digital integration: Q&A with Anakle COO

    Nigeria's digital industry is getting very interesting. More social media campaigns are popping up and during the last elections digital ideas took centre stage. In September 2015 the number of mobile internet users on Nigeria’s telecoms networks clocked in at 97.21 million, according to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC). This is huge, according to the GSMA this is the largest mobile market on the continent. Nigerian digital agencies see this, they see the potential of an internet connected society and the are playing to that. In 2014, a cheeky little game pop up on the web call The Brideprice app....

  • How IBM is building a smarter planet with the cloud

    Most people have heard of Watson -- IBM’s smart computer that famously beat the quiz show Jeopardy! back in 2011. Fewer know that Watson is only one of tens-of-thousands of IBM solutions distributed across the globe. Not only do IBM's computers have the capacity to perform complex tasks like playing a rather intense game of Jeopardy!, they're also used to cut costs when it comes to running business infrastructures. From insurance to banking, IBM's zEnterprize mainframe (or System Z) is touted as being the world's heavyweight champ when it comes to crunching the numbers behind the scenes. Memeburn spoke with IBM's...

  • CcHub’s Bosun Tijani: ‘Nigeria can’t move forward if we don’t use technology smartly’ [Q&A]

    The story of tech entrepreneurship in Nigeria is incomplete without mentioning Lagos-based Co-Creation Hub (CCHub) considering its status as the first extensively recognised incubation centre and enabler of the startup ecosystem in Lagos. The tech hub's significant was also felt during the previous administration in Nigeria which, through the Communication Technology Ministry, partnered with CcHub on a number of projects including the development of Yaba, Nigeria's version of Silicon Valley. Read more on Ventureburn.

  • MMI’s Jaco Oosthuizen on innovation, what corporates can learn from startups [Q&A]

    A little while back we told you about the Startupbootcamp Insurance Accelerator Programme, launched with the support of JSE-listed MMI Holdings. The accelerator programme, is open to startups from all over the world, with the only caveat being that they focus on different areas within insurance, including consumer, re-insurance, back-office efficiency and new risk models. The insurance programme comprises Fast Track days, an Insurance Hackathon and an Insurance Lounge. Fast Track days are sessions that take place over a six-month period where ten startups in various venues across 12 countries are given five minutes to pitch their insurance related business idea...

  • Google’s Michelle Atagana talks life after journalism, spreading the tech gospel

    Long-time Memeburn readers across Africa are probably very familiar with the name Michelle Atagana. And if you didn't read our former Managing Editor's content on the site, chances are you bumped into her at a tech conference somewhere around the globe. Now Head of Communications and Public Affairs at Google South Africa, Atagana recently returned to Burn Media HQ for a visit. While she was here, we sat down with her to talk about life after journalism, what Google's doing in Africa, and how far the continent still has to go when it comes to fostering women entrepreneurs and...

  • 3D printers, cardboard and a giant robot: Omar-Pierre Soubra on the magic of Maker Faire

    Cape Town recently hosted its very first Maker Faire Cape Town. Calling those involved makers, the event saw some 4 000 attendants and over 40 different exhibitors over the weekend, which is a good number for Cape Town. It took place at the Lookout in the V&A Waterfront. The makers showcased a variety of 3D printers, electronics, artwork, and all manner of things created by the exhibitionists. Some of the exhibitions included Arduino Cape Town, the Cardboard Challenge, and a gigantic robot. Besides food stalls outside, nothing at the stands was for sale. This allows the event to be an experience and not...

  • SleekGeek Elan Lohmann chats about fitness tech, online communities

    Since the birth of social media, individuals are constantly finding ways to use these platforms to their full advantage. One of these creatives, Elan Lohmann, used Twitter and Facebook to found SleekGeek, a community initiative to promote healthy living. Lohmann's "previous life" consisted of corporate jobs, a workaholic attitude, and being a self-confessed chain-smoker. He eventually decided to give up that life in order to pursue SleekGeek, which has been a resounding success on Mark Zuckerberg's social media platform. Lohmann recently visited our offices to give us a talk about his journey. Afterwards, we sat down for a quick one-on-one...

  • Y&R CEO David Sable chats advertising’s next big markets, why ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ secretly sucked

    For a guy at the top of an industry worth billions upon billions of dollars, David Sable doesn't seem all that concerned with the bottom line. Instead, the global CEO of WPP-held giant Young & Rubicam seems more concerned with telling great stories about his clients and their products. That philosophy might explain why he hasn't cashed out, despite having been involved in the industry in form or another since 1976. It might also explain why his views on why agencies are so willing to follow those clients into new untapped markets. Having witnessed first-hand the entrance of Western...

  • 9 massive predictions for how tech will impact ‘the next billion’

    Quartz held an impressive event this week with speakers from Uber, frog, and EVRYTHING to name but a few. Titled "The Next Billion", the conference focused on the challenges and the opportunities society faces with the "new world" we are fast seeing emerge. With a heavy vein of mobile and emerging markets peppered throughout, the morning was packed with insight and data on the opportunities the next billion people who come online will pose - some only emerging in the last few months based on new coding and political technology barriers being removed. I spoke with several of the...

  • Opera VP Richard Monday tells Memeburn why its mobile browser is still so important for Africa

    Before the advent of smartphones, and long before iOS got popular in Africa, Africans were using their mobile devices to browse the web. In the early days of mobile internet, surfing the web on mobile devices wasn’t something everyone could afford hence the deployment of various tools and mobile internet tricks and tweaks aimed at lowering costs and browsing faster. The most popular one is the Opera Mini browser. Even though many Nigerians don’t know the science behind how the Opera browser works, they know using it makes browsing the internet more affordable which is why they gladly share...

  • SA’s first social media lawyer on sex tapes, penis transplants and Pistorius

    She’s been described as the Dr. Eve of social media, ready with that much-needed reality check just before we send out a message into the world that one day will come back to haunt us. Invited to SXSW to talk about South Africa’s first trial by social media, Memeburn had the opportunity to sit down with Emma Sadleir at one of Austin’s most opulent hotels, the Driskill. Sadleir shot to fame as host on DStv’s Oscar Pistorius channel fielding Twitter questions about the country’s first televised trial. Viewers could send questions using the #AskEmma hashtag which would often trend while...

  • e.tv’s David Kibuuka travels to hipster mecca SXSW, reveals he owns 5 iPods

    "If you go to Cape Town there's a lot of coloured people, right," David Kibuuka replies after I ask what he makes of all the SXSW hipsters. "But I wouldn't say Cape Town is a coloured place. There just happen to be coloured people too. In the same way when you come to Austin there's a lot of hipsters. So if you came here and asked me if this a hipster place, I wouldn't say that. But if we were going to discuss hipsterness then we would do it here, so that the hipsters wouldn't have to travel that far." A jaunty grin...

  • From Steve Jobs to Eskom: how a former Disney exec solves challenges creatively

    South Africans can learn to live more easily without power. On visiting Cape Town and Johannesburg this week, Greg Brandeau was surprised to find how we've come to accept the way power cuts are communicated. But the former Pixar and Disney executive wasn't visiting as an Eskom consultant, rather Brandeau came to speak at Accenture's inaugural Innovation Conference and just happened to have some suggestions on our electricity crisis during an interview with Memeburn. Brandeau is an MIT-trained engineer who has had the opportunity to take talented companies to its next level, a skill that has taken him to the corners of...