• BURN MEDIA
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Ventureburn
      Startup news for emerging markets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

Startup news

  • East African startup accelerator gets international attention

    East Africa has a new tech startup accelerator fund and it’s getting international attention. The Savannah Fund is a partnership between Mbwana Alliy, Paul Bragiel and iHub founder Erik Hersman and is “focused on finding and investing in East Africa’s highest potential pre-revenue startups”. According to Hersman, the “idea is to bring the Silicon Valley-style accelerator model to Africa, seeing what needs to be tweaked to make it work for our region”....

  • LoyalT: Bringing check-in rewards to sport

    We're always looking for hot startups and so it was with great glee that we were introduced to LoyalT, which brings location-based reward programs to life for small businesses by offering users special deals based on checking in, similar to Foursquare and Scvngr. The first implementation of LoyalT's technology is called SharksFrenzy for The Sharks Rugby Union in Durban, South Africa. According to Justin Raleigh, New Media Director at LoyalT, the concept of SharksFrenzy was started in August 2010 with a need to develop a sports rewards programme that not only rewards fans for their support to a...

  • Microsoft to give startups a free flight to the cloud

    Microsoft is set to give a select group of early stage startups free access to its cloud offering. Under the initiative, which is part of its global BizSpark Plus accelerator programme, the software giant says it will be giving away US$60 000 of free software to South African startups over 10 years. According to Clifford de Wit, developer and platform lead at Microsoft SA, the initiative is aimed at building a...

  • New daily deals site promises ‘clever twist’, less emails

    Yawn. Another daily deals site. That's so 2011. Promisingly however, the latest entrant into the market SaveMeDeals.com claims that it won't clog up your inbox. The site, which will be operated in South Africa by the MIH-owned online price comparison service PriceCheck, is a deal portal aggregator. This means that instead of offering its own deals, the site displays all the advertised deals from group buying sites in one place. Its entry into...

  • Major African VC network launches private investing tools

    Venture Capital for Africa (VC4Africa), an online community of venture capitalists, angels and entrepreneurs, today announced the launch of new tools aimed at helping people raise funds for their startups. The network, which is dedicated to building business on the African continent, claims that the new tools make private investment easy, secure and social. It also says that they allow entrepreneurs to register their funding needs. These are then shared for...

  • Rocket Internet wants 5rooms to own SA furniture market

    We've mentioned online furniture sales outfit 5rooms previously. It's part of German startup incubator Rocket Internet's stable of South African ecommerce sites, but it hasn't had the same kind of exposure as the likes of shoe and fashion outlet Zando. That all looks set to change. Memeburn got its hands on site's pitch book, which claims that the company was "established to become the market leader among South African furniture retailers". It claims that its position within the Rocket Internet network, which comprises over 38 companies operating in 58 countries, will help it achieve this goal. Having several hundred million Euros...

  • Sweden claims victory over SA in startup pitch battle

    A group of Swedish startups won the first ever international 'city versus city' pitch battle on web TV series This Week in Startups, beating out a group of South African startups in doing so. The show, which is hosted by US angel investor Jason Calacanis and Skweal (a real-time customer review service) CEO Tyler Crowley lays claim to 100 000 viewers every episode. The show saw three top Swedish startups competing against...

  • Africa Gathering: London event to celebrate African startups

    People tend to get excited around startups. It's probably something to do with the manic energy and will to succeed possessed by the people running them. And if the reaction to articles like this and this are anything to go by, people are really excited by African startups. In fact, people around the world are starting to talk about startups on the continent in a big way. One example of this is the...

  • Smokoo founders launch online dating site

    When online auction site Smokoo shut down, we told you that its South African-based founders were working on a new project. Memeburn can now reveal what that new project is: an online dating site. The site, called Adopt Him, claims to offer a slightly different take on the online dating phenomenon, calling itself “South Africa’s first online dating site that lets the ladies call the shots”. Here’s how it works. The site...

  • Can anonymous lists help Active Gifts win at Social Gifting?

    Some people think that social gifting is the next big thing in tech. Hell some even think it’s the future of ecommerce. One of the latest guests to the part is a site called Active Gifts. According to the Ukranian-based company’s CEO Artem Sukhoroslov, the site’s aim is to make sure that 100% of people receiving gifts are satisfied with them. He claims to have to stats that show 75% of people...

  • Providing a platform for South Korean startups: BeLaunch

    South Korea is a leading player in the global tech industry with Korean brands leaving their mark in various sectors. While we hear a lot about South Korean firms innovating and pushing the envelope, there is hardly any platform to showcase the thriving software and tech startup scene in South Korea. BeLaunch hopes to do just that by giving a platform for Korean startups and at the same time enable people and...

  • Would you run your startup from a boat docked off Silicon Valley?

    This has the potential to be cool. Very cool. It's a boat that will eventually float 12 miles (19.3km) off the coast of California and it's attracting attention from startups around the world. The boat, which bills itself as a floating island, is the brainchild of a company called Blueseed. The fact that it's in international waters means that people can have close access to funding from Silicon Valley VCs without a US work visa. According to a report released by Blueseed, that may not be the biggest draw though. Nearly a quarter of the companies that have signed up to...

  • The Cameroon Startup Challenge: Is the next global company in Cameroon?

    Sanaga Ventures and VC4Africa are turning their sights to Cameroon to uncover the most innovative web, mobile or hardware-based startups. The Cameroon Startup Challenge offers a cash prize of US$5 000 and an opportunity to receive mentorship and incubation at ActivSpaces, Cameroon’s leading technology hub. “Innovation can come from anywhere in the world, and the next global company might very well be from Cameroon. We want to do what we can to...

  • Ad Dynamo goes on a Brazilian adventure

    There are a good few people who think that the next big thing in tech could come from Latin America. It makes sense that foreign companies would want to invest there too. The latest to do so is Ad Dynamo, an online and mobile advertising marketplace with a global presence. The company today officially announced its entry into the Brazilian market, with CEO Sean Riley saying the country represents "an enormous growth market in both online and mobile advertising". Ad Dynamo isn't going it alone in Brazil either, announcing that it would be working in partnership with native outfit...

  • Umbono Alpha Beta: Beer, pizza and startups, the Google way

    Umbono Alpha Beta is a Google event at which you can have as much free beer and pizza as you want, as long as you love startups. Memeburn was invited to watch as six startups -- three teams at the end of their six month Umbono program (last year's winners) and three who are just beginning -- presented their products and businesses to a packed (and we do mean packed) room. Umbono launched last year as a trial startup incubation project exclusive to Cape Town, South Africa. The Umbono programme aims to transform visions into businesses by taking successful applicants with new...