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Startup news

  • Exclusive: A peek at ex-Yola chief’s new startup, Gyft

    When well-known serial web entrepreneur, Vinny Lingham, recently resigned as CEO of his successful website builder and hosting service, Yola, he announced that he would be heading up a new venture called Gyft. At the time of the announcement all we knew about Gyft was what everyone else knew, simply that Gyft promised “to change the way you think about gift cards". Today we know a little more thanks to a sneak...

  • 10 Startups that could change the face of news forever

    There are an estimated 7-billion of us. Between us, its other inhabitants, the big black bit around it and Mother Earth herself, there’s never a dull moment, news happens organically, all the time. The news machine is an efficient one, the cogs -- reporters, news agencies and so on -- have become invisible. It seems seamless, news follows us everywhere, the machine works, but that doesn’t stop brilliant minds -- internet entrepreneurs, emerging media innovators and legacy newsrooms -- from attempting to push it forward, especially in the digital age. The Knight News Challenge is part of Knight Foundation’s US$100-million...

  • Stand a chance at receiving expert startup mentoring

    Running a startup is tricky: you have way more work than you would in an office job without any of the safety nets offered by a big corporate. You need all the help you can get. That help couldn’t come in a much better package than seasoned UK-based startup mentor Permjot Valia. Startups attending the Startup Acceleration Workshop at this year’s Net Prophet conference will have the opportunity to spend time...

  • Looqiloo turns everyone into an infomercial host

    Ever wanted to be an infomercial host, but never figured out how? Then Looqiloo might be the right site for you. The site's developers claim that it lets people buy directly from a video pitching products at them. The site, which goes live today, also wants to make selling social. Looqiloo claims that "anyone can easily upload personal videos about their favorite products and share them with their friends, family and social networks". The site isn't exactly starting from scratch either. Looqiiloo says there already 14 000 products live. It also says getting started with pitching a new product is relatively easy...

  • Digital publishing conduit Snapplify launches Android platform

    If you haven’t heard of Snapplify, it’s a solution that enables publishers, authors and content providers to convert their books, magazines and brochures into digital publications. If the concept sounds compelling to you and you happen to be in London between 16 and 18 April this year, Snapplify will be on hand at the London Book Fair to launch its new Android platform. Its iOS version currently supports publishers such as iMaverick,...

  • Crowdinvest, ‘worlds first crowd sourced investment platform’, launches

    Any new startup, scratch that, any business should be solving the universal issue of “what problem can my company solve?” Crowdinvest, a venture by three ambitious Cape Town locals aims to address the need of the burgeoning startup in a distinctly un-Kickstarter like way. How so? By crowdfunding projects through social networks, word of mouth and whatever else fits the bill. Anton Breytenbach, Jay Thomson and Jaco van der Bank are the trio...

  • Snapdisk: South African startup enters cloud storage race

    We are spoilt for choice when it comes to cloud storage solutions, but we’ve yet to see an emerging market company truly stick it to big name services such as Carbonite, Mozy, DropBox , SugarSync, Box and Wuala. South African company, Motillion, wants to change that with Snapdisk, a secure cloud storage and file sharing service for PC, Mac, and mobile devices. Depending on the package you choose, Snapdisk allows you to schedule backups -- think Carbonite -- and sync your files across multiple devices -- think DropBox. Snapdisk aims to set itself apart by competing on ease of use and...

  • Spaaza: The glue that brings together online and offline shopping

    eCommerce changed everything, but beyond the convenience, choice and financial savings yielded by armchair shopping, there’s an armada of disgruntled brick and mortar businesses who find it hard to compete. Why? In the US, big online retailers such as Amazon are exempt from collecting sales tax from online shoppers in the majority of states. A 1992 US Supreme Court ruling states that online retailers don’t have to collect sales taxes in states where they lack a physical presence. The pressure is mounting however, local governments are joining arms with offline retailers to change the laws, as projections of uncollected taxes...

  • It’s Startup Month at Memeburn

    Every month is startup month at Memeburn, but we’re doing something special for the month of April. We invite you to let us know about which killer startups -- your own or ones you admire -- we should be covering. Share on Facebook or Twitter Tell us about deserving startups by using the hashtag #memestartup on Twitter or by posting a short motivation on Memeburn's Facebook page. If you’d like us to feature your own startup, be sure to complete Memeburn's startup questionnaire. Pitch your startup on Google+ Later this month, Memeburn will be hosting a Google+ Hangout  featuring MXit and World of...

  • Photo-based MXit app shows impressive growth — 400k users in one month

    An app inside mobile social network MXit is showing some fairly impressive growth. The app, called JudgeME, was developed by mobile social network builder Motribe and reportedly helps people meet each other by uploading and browsing photos. The South African-based company claims the app has gained over 400 000 users less than a month after launching and that it is “already generating enough revenue to cover its costs”. The company says this growth happened faster...

  • The rise of Woza Online: 10K websites in just two months

    Google's Woza Online initiative claims to have successfully helped 11 200 small businesses set up websites easily and for free in South Africa -- all in just two months. And Google expects "thousands more" to sign up in the coming months. Woza Online is a world-wide initiative that helps small businesses create their own websites, in turn boosting job creation and economic growth. Google has launched similar initiatives in 23 other countries around the world from Great Britain, Canada, and Australia to Brazil, Indonesia, France, and Poland -- bringing 400 000 businesses online over two years. In Africa,...

  • And the winners of the Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition 2012 are…

    Moments ago LaunchCapeTown announced the winners of the Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition for 2012. Congratulations to the following teams. Track 1 -- Idea Stage 1st place: Zoe-X 2nd place: Ching 3rd place: Home Bug Track 2 -- Growth Stage 1st place: Snapplify 2nd place: Triggerfish 3rd place: Umuntu Media Earlier today all ten finalists received a second round of coaching and delivered their final pitches in front of the judges, mentors and other finalists. The awards ceremony concludes CTEC 2012, but the three Growth stage winners will receive additional coaching next week, in preparation for the Barcelona Global Entrepreneurship Competition nominations. The winners of both groups receive cash prizes and...

  • LaunchCapeTown: Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition — Day 1

    Memeburn was in the house for day one of the Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition (CTEC), part of LaunchCapeTown, the event that brings together startups, entrepreneurs, and digital tastemakers. The morning started off with an opening address by Belinda Walker from the City of Cape Town. In her spirited talk, ten teams waiting to deliver their opening pitches listened intently as Walker stressed the the importance of entrepreneurship in job creation. She called Cape Town “a city of contrasts” and highlighted the 28% unemployment rate -- 40% if you include those who are not actively pursuing work. In order to avoid what...

  • Meet the ten finalists for the Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition

    Last night, at LaunchCapeTown's TechBash opening ceremony, the ten finalists for the Cape Town Entrepreneurial Competition (CTEC) were announced. LaunchCapeTown is a five day event that brings together startups, entrepreneurs, and digital tastemakers. Five finalists were announced for two groups. The "idea stage" group -- businesses that are not trading yet -- and the "growth stage" group -- businesses that have been trading for less than two years or that have been trading for more than two years, with a new product or service or that need capital for expansion. The first round of the competition kicked off today and saw...

  • All aboard the StartupBus: The pressure cooker startup incubator on wheels

    Bottle the following ingredients: the electric buzz of a Red Bull fueled hackerspace, the interpersonal caterwauling of a reality show and pressure, loads of pressure. Now, let it loose on a bus travelling at 60 miles an hour and you get StartupBus. StartupBus has been around for over two years now and it continues to bring together intrepid tech entrepreneurs, designers and developers who present ideas and develop working prototypes while in transit. Buses carrying these enterprising tech geeks meander towards a final destination, at which time a judging ceremony is held, recognising the best prototype. This all happens in...