Author: Staff Writer

Cape Town-based firm HAVAÍC announced on Tuesday that it has concluded a pre-Series A first round of funding for an undisclosed amount with Taz Technologies Inc (trading as MPost). MPost has commenced it’s Series A equity fundraise, targeting a minimum of $2 million.  It already has serious interest and commitments from various international investors. HAVAÍC has secured the rights to advance a significant share of this round. Developed by Kenyan founders Abdulaziz (Aziz) Omar and Twahir Mohamed, MPost is an innovative, simple and affordable solution that utilizes consumers’ mobile phone numbers to create internationally accepted postal addresses, virtual Post Office…

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PayU, a unit of Naspers, announced today the acquisition of Iyzico – a digital payment services provider and one of the most hotly tipped FinTech start-ups in Turkey – for $165 million. The acquisition, which adds to the over $500 million PayU deployed across FinTech investments and M&A, is a further step in the company’s mission to become the leading payments provider in high growth markets and the world’s leading FinTech investor. The acquisition will allow PayU to consolidate its position as a leader in the payments space and accelerate scale and efficiency in Turkey, where there is a huge…

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UK-based autonomous and driverless vehicles specialist Intercept IP announced on Tuesday its new plans to enter the South African usage-based insurance telematics market through a collaboration with Digicall. Digicall is to be the official distributor and reseller of Intercept IP’s technology in the Southern African region, following an agreement between the two parties. South Africa is one of the world’s leading markets in insurance telematics and stolen vehicle recovery. Millions of devices have been deployed over the last 20 years, but the key market players are now looking to enhance the performance of their technology and the services they offer,…

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Avon the multinational beauty and cosmetics icon has been selected as one of the finalists in the prestigious Sunday Times Generation Next Awards which will take place on Thursday, 13 June. The nomination for the much-coveted award is a testament to the growing appeal of Avon products among the Generation Alpha, the tech-savvy young children of millennials, who are emerging as marketing’s power players, decision makers and very powerful influencers. Now in its 15th year, the Sunday Times Generation Next Youth survey, in association with leading youth market specialists, HDI Youth Marketeers, polls more than twelve thousand youths from around…

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Travelstart, SA’s Travel Booking Firm, announced on Monday in a statement that it will buy Club Travel Group for an undisclosed amount. The company said the acquisition will boost its offering by adding Club Travel’s established complementary corporate and franchise divisions, creating a formidable full-service African travel group. “We love Club Travel because like us they have a long history in discount travel,” said Travelstart’s CEO Stephan Ekbergh. “Travelstart is strong in the consumer segment and we want to bring consumerization to the corporate and government sectors, where Club Travel is an emerging star.” While Africa’s travel and tourism market…

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Old Mutual Insure has opted out of insuring computer equipment used for cryptocurrency mining. The Sandton-based insurer said on Monday that this is due to the unregulated nature of the industry, which is often associated with cybercrime, and its penchant for using modified electronic infrastructure that operates on a 24/7 basis, making it highly prone to overheating and other malfunctions. The world of cryptocurrencies or digital currencies is growing rapidly as digitisation continues to disrupt the financial services industry. Mining these cryptocurrencies usually requires expensive computers, servers and other equipment. It is important for people to note many insurers do…

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Ethos Artificial Intelligence (AI) has invested R200 million in recently launched digital bank TymeBank, which is owned by African Rainbow Capital (ARC). The investment by the Ethos AI Fund in TymeBank will result in the Fund being an 8% shareholder in the bank. The transaction value was agreed with Ethos management before the bank was formally launched in February 2019. Since TymeBank was launched, more than 400 000 clients have signed up for bank accounts, which should lead to a considerable increase in the enterprise value of the bank. Customer acquisition achievements are significantly ahead of targeted projections and the…

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MTN Group is embracing artificial intelligence (AI) and on Friday announced the launch of Africa’s ‘first’ Mobile Money (MoMo) AI service or “chatbot”. The mobile phone giant said the chatbot went live in Ivory Coast in May and will be rolled out across its MoMo footprint in the next few months. The AI mobile money “assistant” enables customers to engage with MTN’s MoMo services, including payments, on various social media platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, and via SMS. The company also said the service will also be included over time, in MTN’s own newly released advanced instant messaging…

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Former professional Rugby player Dylan Des Fountain and his entrepreneur wife, Joy, have built and developed a mobile and desktop platform that allows users to easily snap, upload and submit expense claims instantly for approval. Slipztream, an expense claim app, uses Google’s Cloud Vision Technology which allows the information from the scanned slip to populate the expense claim, the company said on Thursday. With a mobile app, the user is able to capture, create and submit expense claims on their smartphone. Snap and upload receipts with ease and submit claims instantly. No more lost receipts. No more missed claim submissions.…

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Dr Xolani Mkhwanazi has been named as the chairman of the troubled JSE-listed technology group EOH. His appointment is with immediate effect. Dr Mkhwanazi will lead board deliberations on all group matters, and more immediately, the findings of the investigation commissioned by EOH into public sector contracts being undertaken by ENSafrica. Having been presented the preliminary findings, Dr. Mkhwanazi and the board will assess these, ask for such additional work as may be required and engage with relevant stakeholders where appropriate. Relevant findings and associated actions will be disclosed as soon as practically possible after the next steps have been…

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