South-Africa, June 2017 - Seedstars World, the global seed-stage startup competition for emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes, is in South-Africa to find the best startups from across the country. The initiative has recently pre-selected the best entrepreneurs of Gauteng and West Cape thanks to two satellite competitions, one in Johannesburg and one in Cape Town. Given the diversity and the wealth of South African ecosystems applications were considered from other South African provinces as well, and 3 startups were selected as wildcards to pitch at the final event on Thursday, June 29th.
The South African competition is carried out with the support of local lead partner, Standard Bank and local ambassador Entrepreneur Traction. Additional support is provided by regional partner Merck and local partner Payfast.
“Standard Bank is proud to be the country sponsor of Seedstars South Africa for the third year. Our partnership with Seedstars has given us yet another opportunity to engage with the vibrant startup community across the country. This year we hope to attract some of the most innovative businesses as with previous years. These partnerships allow us to help change the narrative of the potential that exists on the continent and helps us recognise and create access to market opportunities for those businesses that make it to the regional finals and the finals.” says Jayshree Naidoo, Head of Incubator at Standard Bank.
Moreover, Seedstars World has partnered with the Merck Accelerator on a regional level, in order to support seed-stage companies with a focus on the fields of healthcare, life science and performance materials. The most promising HealthTech startups will receive office space in the Merck Innovation Center in Kenya or Germany, mentoring and coaching on a regular basis and financial support of up to €50,000. In total, each prize package is worth around €200,000.
The event will take place at the Standard Bank Auditorium with the startups to pitch to a panel of judges for a chance to represent South Africa at the Global stage in Switzerland next year.
The 3 startups that received the wildcard and were invited to pitch at the final event are:
LenomaLegal is a female founded Legal eCommerce website with instant legal document download capability for business owners.
A digital rewards platform that incentivizes its users for postitive behaviors.
Homefarm brings you the healthiest leafy greens, effortlessly grown, from the comfort of your home.
These 3 startups will join the winners from the Cape Town Satellite event (EMG Technologies, GreenFingers Mobile, and mbora) and the Johannesburg Satellite event (CommuScore, Empty Trips Pty Ltd, Muzi and Invoiceworx).
“The quality of startups is validation of the abundance of talent in South Africa. 2017 being our third, we are seeing the impact Seedstars World has on the growth of the local ecosystem, as more founders are thinking global" says Vuyisa Qabaka, Partner at Entrepreneur Traction.
In line with its mission to place the spotlight on entrepreneurs from emerging markets, Seedstars World is travelling to 80 countries this year to identify the best seed-stage entrepreneurs and provide them with an opportunity to win up to USD 500,000 and network with investors and mentors from around the world. Its previous participants have raised over USD 61M collectively, providing employment to more than 800 employees worldwide.
“We have been very pleased with the quality of the startups in Johannesburg and Cape Town. We want to give the opportunity to the rest of South African entrepreneurs to compete at Johannesburg finals thanks to the wild card. We look forward to finding the last competitors of this final which look already very promising” says Claudia Makadristo, Regional Manager for Africa at Seedstars World.
You can RSVP to attend the final on https://www.seedstarsworld.com/event/Seedstars-SA-17 (limited spots left)