28 Jan MULTICHOICE ACCELERATOR
The MultiChoice Innovation Fund launched the MultiChoice Accelerator, a programme aimed at developing and connecting South African start-ups and scaling businesses with global investors to unlock business opportunities at Expo 2020 in Dubai.
MultiChoice Accelerator has been supporting the growth of 20 South African start-ups in collaboration with Dubai-based incubator C3 (C3 is a United Arab Emirates (UAE) based social enterprise, the dtic (the department responsible for leading South Africa’s participation at Expo 2020) and Expo Live, an innovation impact grant programme. The 20 start-ups have embarked on an intensive blended learning journey, with six shortlisted to participate and showcase their solutions at Expo 2020 Dubai.
ITThynk Smart Solutions, a software development and consulting enterprise, and pan-African publisher, LudiqueWorks, have partnered to form Africa’s largest video game publisher and studio known as ITThynk Gaming.
The company is bringing African gaming to a global market. ITThynk Gaming operates in seven African countries with an average of 250 000 downloads of more than 12 African video games. ITThynk prides itself on being a small family business with extensive ICT experience, and desires to see Africans develop the confidence, skills and capital to solve African problems across the continent.
Essential Medical (EM) Guidance is an intelligent medicines search engine, providing access to the largest up-to-date database of country-specific medicines, information, and digital support tools in South Africa.
Understanding how medicines are packaged, how it’s costed, and how it’s used to treat a population is complex challenges that are easily addressed through EM Guidance. There are a number of competing mobile apps and digital platforms globally, but none that speak to the specific local context need that EM Guidance addresses.
The system is aimed at both healthcare professionals searching for medicines’ information on a daily basis and multinational pharmaceuticals who spend a significant amount of their sales, marketing and educational efforts on engaging with these healthcare professionals. The system currently reaches over 35 000 healthcare professionals in South Africa. With over 1 million searches per month, the company has managed to onboard most of the larger multinational pharmaceutical companies that operate in South Africa, with the support of the National Department of Health.
Following their last interaction with the MultiChoice Innovation Fund, the company signed a significant multi-country contract to roll out EM Guidance systems across all Sub-Saharan countries – a contract worth well over US$1 million/ZAR15,983 million.
4Surity provides automated insurance risk monitoring to the financial sector – the first of its kind on the continent. The company boasts a unique business model that harnesses the latest technology to address collateral risk faced by customers. There is currently no automated system that allows financial institutions to monitor when a customer cancels their insurance policy on financed assets.
4Surity’s mission is to strengthen the financial sector and reduce billions of Rands worth of exposure on behalf of banks and insurance houses. 4Surity was one of the finalists in the Alpha-code program in 2017. Currently, the company is working on a proof-of-concept with one of the major South African banks, as well as a content production company.
The MultiChoice Innovation Fund has played a crucial role in providing seed-capital for the business. The funding will be used to build the technology platform and will provide a working capital runway.
How would you feel if you lost over 80% of your investment in one day through no fault of your own? This is exactly what happened to thousands of investors during the Luckin Coffee accounting scandal. But this risk is insurable thanks to a world-first investor protection from InvestSure.
It is extremely difficult to assess and predict management fraud, leaving investors exposed to significant risk. In 2020 in the US alone, there were 33 cases where large companies lost over 10% of their value due to allegations of fraud – wiping off billions of Dollars in investors savings. Developed in conjunction with Hannover Re, the investor insurance provides simple, effective and affordable protection. The insurance is 100% automated, adopting a parametric claims process, and is fully digital.
InvestSure integrates with online trading platforms; the insurance then appears as a simple checkbox when the investor is buying shares, similar to online travel insurance. The platform acts as a broker and collects and pays over the premium to the insurer. InvestSure has been live in South Africa on EasyEquities for three years and has issued over 60 000 policies to 11 000 clients.
A rock is just a rock until you inject it with augmented reality (AR). Then it becomes a rock on digital steroids. Guerrilla is a creative tech agency built on defying society and battling the ordinary. While AR technology is exciting, it can be rather intimidating.
One day, husband and wife duo – founder Cameron Naidoo and managing director Leasha Naidoo – found ourselves asking the question: Wouldn’t it be cool if we could uncomplicate the AR process and overlay content on real world products? Enter Foxtrot… an easy to use AR platform that enables individuals and businesses to create simple experiences by making the tech accessible. Create a simple build using drag and drop functionality; preview and then publish – helping ordinary people creating extraordinary experiences.
Mzansi Live is an independent, pan-African omni media company that provides media management solutions and services. Part of their offering includes the ATIMS Ecosystem that automates media buying, inventory management, data capturing and analysis across digital, radio, TV and out of home.
Led by media and marketing trailblazer, Angelo Tandy, who is also chairman of Out of Home Media Industry Association of South Africa, Mzansi Live works largely with broadcast houses and independent radio stations.
Mzansi Live aims to develop into an end-to-end omni media channel, trading all media inventory through a single, integrated platform.The platform is the first broadcast media booking system locally developed, locally hosted and locally supported.
LightBulb Education is an all-in-one content management and real-time virtual learning platform available on your mobile phone. The subscription-based service offers quality education and training solutions for users online – be it teacher, trainer or learner – regardless of geographic location.
LightBulb Education’s mission is to provide a tool for quality, innovative, and results-orientated teaching and training services by allowing subject matter experts and trainers the ability to educate and train their users with ease. With LightBulb, schools or companies can guarantee quick and easy delivery of effective training to their learners/workforce from anywhere in the world.
Swypa Delivery is a delivery service provider for township-based businesses, offering logistics solutions that assist with delivery of food, liquor, groceries, parcels and medicine and supply business support. Established in Tembisa in 2019, the COVID-19 pandemic saw the business rapidly grow its offering to help safely deliver products such as food, masks, and hand sanitisers.
Through its deliveries, the company services over 40 local businesses in the food, liquor, laundry, pharmaceutical, daily essentials, and auto spares trade including several lifestyle and clothing brands. Swypa has expanded its offering to informal food traders by helping them with professional packaging and presentation options, banking solutions by accepting cash and card options on delivery, and also connects these informal traders to both customers and suppliers.
Swypa is targeting 23 main cities around the country using 250 motorised scooters – South Africa’s township population makes up 18% of the country’s population. Having recently increased their delivery bike fleet and developed an app to make orders easier, founder Boitumelo Monageng and managing director Thabang Kgopane together with their team of 20, hope to grow the business into a free-to-use township business-focused delivery service for consumers nationwide.
Prime Medical Solutions
Prime Medical Solutions is a virtual and mobile healthcare service provider that leverages technology to improve how patients consume healthcare. Many Africans live far from basic healthcare facilities such as clinics and hospitals, but thanks to Prime Medical Solutions, these patients can consult with doctors every week using a basic video phone and via a monthly face-to-face visit at their homes.
Prime Medical Solutions takes advantage of the 40% internet penetration in Africa to tackle access to healthcare both practically and financially – targeting digitally-savvy medical aid members. The company offers patients end-to-end care without them having to leave their homes by integrating the healthcare journey. Prime Medical Solutions’ digital platform also enables healthcare providers to improve their service offering and the ability to claim from medical insurance.
The company is registered with all medical aid service providers in South Africa and has agreements with blue chip organisations such as Eskom. Prime Medical Solutions currently operates in Cape Town and Johannesburg and is now looking to enter the KwaZulu-Natal market and, thereafter, the SADC region.
Michanic is a web app that connects motorists to professional, vetted mechanics for car repairs and services. It is currently the only online platform in South Africa providing instant pricing for services.
Users can easily book car services or repairs online with mechanics who come to your home or office. Michanic was founded with the goal of making car repairs and maintenance reliable, affordable, convenient, straightforward, and honest.
The company was founded on the belief that the auto repair industry could be improved and offers a convenient, cost-effective and transparent platform in Africa.
In South Africa, over 22 million people are not connected to the internet. Nathi Mbele, CEO of Ad Notes, aims to solve this problem by offering South African communities affordable internet access. Ad Notes is licenced by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) to provide internet services using television white spaces.
TV white spaces are broadcast frequencies that television stations don’t use and can produce better long-range frequencies at a lower cost. Ad Notes creates Wi-Fi hotspots in communities that assist institutions such as schools to access unlimited, uncapped internet for as little as R5 a day.
Previously, students would have to walk long distances to an internet café where they would pay anything from R20 an hour. Ad Notes hopes to provide 6 million households with affordable internet access in the near future.
SlikourOnLife is an online media streaming platform that connects artists to fans and brands. Currently, the music industry is divided into three sub-categories: the streaming subscription industry; the publishing industry; and the performance industry.
The revenue for each is either fragmented, in silos, or exclusive to those in the know. SlikourOnLife aims to organise music revenue by consolidating these three industries on a medium that is in the form of a music streaming platform. Founded by Siyabonga Methane, aka Slikour, SlikourOnLife features a user account, family account, and business account, and allows businesses to book artists or acquire music rights.
With 25 million visitors and 50 000 subscribers and US$4 million/ZAR63,920 million generated from advertising-funded revenue already, SlikourOnLife is the only platform globally that will make revenue from subscriptions and ads, and commission from publishing and performances.
Whoosh Innovations is a payment solutions company hosting a world-class Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant payment gateway. Whoosh facilitates online transactions for merchants selling products over web portals and mobile applications.
The company was founded in 2014 by Lebeko Mphelo when he identified the need for mobile card readers in South Africa. After many iterations of the business model, it then pivoted to a payment gateway where it has garnered great success in offering a compelling solution to the South African payments industry.
Whoosh Innovations’ vision is to become a leading payment solutions company solidifying their position in the market and investing in businesses of the future. Currently employing a team of 15, comprising developers, designers, account managers and commercial specialists, they aim to grow the business and become a leading tech solutions and investment company that develops and supports innovative solutions centred around payments across Africa. As South Africa’s first black-owned and managed payments solution, Whoosh is aiming to consolidate payments scattered across various platforms onto one portal.
Founded by Vincent Maposa, Wetility is a hybrid solar solution that couples storage with affordable payment options and great customer service. South Africa is experiencing 10% increases in electricity tariffs annually and 860 hours of power cuts per year. The electricity sector in South Africa is a US$47 billion/ZAR751,06 billion market, with roughly 3.2 million households and SMEs paying an electricity bill of above US$99/ZAR1,582 per month. Wetility offers three main products:
- We-X – an interactive and rapid system sizing tool as well as a remote monitoring platform.
2. PACE – a hybrid energy storage solution that houses a battery, switch gear and allows you to seamlessly interact with the grid and access power from your hybrid rooftop solar system.
- Payment Options – has a number of leasing solutions suitable for customers.
Wetility aims to grow from a US$1.5 million/ZAR23,970 million business to a US$142 million/ZAR2,349 billion business by 2026 by focusing on technology and innovation, customer service, and customer success.
Senso prides itself on creating inclusive solutions for the Deaf community in South Africa through innovative technology. One of the main impacts of deafness is the inability to hear life-saving sounds.
The hallmark product for Senso are armbands that vibrate or light up when it picks up sounds, such as a baby crying or an alarm going off, thus alerting the wearer. The Senso mission is to address the loss of life that occurs because of a Deaf or hard-of-hearing person being unable to hear life-saving sounds.
Storytelling really is our super power. It’s the one thing we all want to be a part of no matter who we are. Every single culture in the world was built around campfires through storytelling and KYL Solutions is about igniting communities through storytelling through their app, Kampfyre.
KYL Solutions is essentially a research and execution platform that connects storytellers to communities using artificial intelligence (AI) and data, powered by an intuitive mobile and desktop app. By taking this approach, story developers will easily know if the idea works, and they can save money by not focusing on ideas that don’t.
Most importantly, everyone gets to own a piece of the storytelling business. By the time the competition looks up, KYL Solutions will be a dominant player in a largely uncontested space.
Gazata DotCo is South Africa’s first peer-to-peer online lending platform and is on a journey to disrupt Africa’s credit industry. Low-income workers, such as domestic workers and gardeners, have little access to credit due to a lack of loan security and unfavourable credit scores.
Their only option is obtaining credit from informal micro lenders who charge exorbitant interest rates, which leads to spiralling debt. On the flip side is South Africa’s young middle-class who are better educated, earn a higher salary or run their own small businesses, and are in search of multiple streams of income, but dislike bank investment accounts as these yield little return. Gazata DotCo helps marginalised communities access alternative credit by connecting individuals who need credit, with individuals who are willing to lend money – using automated technology that matches the right lender with the right borrower.
The absence of banks means that the cost of credit is much lower, and lenders’ returns are better. Gazata DotCo is targeting 20 000 users on its web-based platform within three years, with its sights firmly set on the local stokvel market that has 11.5 million members and an estimated US$3.3 billion/ZAR52,734 billion in members’ savings.
In South Africa, there are 20 times more traditional or independent trade stores than modern retailers or chain stores, yet these traditional retailers only earn 30% of total revenue generated in the market.
The poor pay most for goods at traditional retailers because brands lack the connectivity, data, and electronic and physical access to these stores, and cannot reach those consumers with their low marketing and promotional budgets. TillSlip helps solve this problem by connecting to any point-of-sale system and intercepts the sale data before the receipt is printed.
This allows brands and retailers to connect with their targeted consumers and use the data and the receipt as an advertising or communication medium. South African FMCG brands spend over US$400 million/ZAR6,392 billion of their marketing budget on in-store marketing mechanics. TillSlip replaces all these mechanics more affordably and more efficiently than any other solution available and, for the first time ever, brands can redirect their promotional budgets to those who need it most.
This makes it is the most affordable hyper-targeted cost-per-point marketing solution available anywhere, while the shared revenue model allows retailers to earn a passive income from the space and data on the receipt.