Ingrid Best’s work behind the scenes for leading spirits brands has worked in her favor.
Nov 21, 2023
Investments are continuing to pour in for African tech entrepreneurs. TechCrunch reports that Founders Factory Africa (FFA), an early-stage investment firm, has raised $114 million “to scale its model to better serve founders across the African tech ecosystem.” The funding for the South Africa-based accelerator was led by Mastercard Foundation and Johnson & Johnson.
Aug 16, 2023
This young twin duo is behind an award-winning innovation for medical care.
Feb 8, 2023
The world may have joked about the COVID-19 Omicron variant by changing its name to “Omarion,” but that’s not the reaction that the scientist who discovered it, Sikhulile Moyo, is solely concerned about. The first case of the variant was reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) from South Africa, and since its discovery, Moyo has become disappointed in the world’s response. Moyo is a research associate with the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the lab director of the Botswana-Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership team that was responsible for identifying the Omicron variant this past November. The New York Times reports, four international travelers contracted COVID-19 on Nov. 11, four days after entering Botswana. After further analysis, the scientists discovered the genetic sequence of the case was unique and foreign to the research and public community.
Dec 20, 2021
Small African farmers are facing a multitude of problems that affect the progress of agricultural production on the continent. But software-for-agriculture startup Khula has an innovative solution that’s helping this niche industry thrive again. TechCrunch reports that the South African-based company just announced the raise of a $1.3 million seed round to help further scale its farming software and expand nationwide. The round, which closed last year, was led by AECI — one of Africa’s biggest agrochemical companies — and included participation from South African impact investor E Squared Investments. With financial-backing from its lead investor, Khula now has access to AECI’s wide distribution network which is poised to help the platform scale its inputs app. AECI’s support will go a long way as a long-term partner that’s genuinely interested in the execution of the platform’s services. “Khula has very attractive fundamentals, a sizable addressable market, app development...
Aug 3, 2021
Worldwide retail giant Amazon is on a mission to expand its global reach with a new office setup in South Africa. According to Face2Face Africa, Amazon’s U.S. company has announced plans to open up a new base of operations and break ground with a real estate investment priced at nearly $300 million. The office will be located at a new development in River Club, described as a prime section of Cape Town. “US retail giant, Amazon, will be the anchor tenant, opening a base of operations on the African continent,” Cape Town mayor, Dan Plato, said in a statement. “The development is envisaged to take place in phases, with construction set to take place over three to five years.” The mayor revealed that the new development intends to design a 150,000 square meter mixed-use space across two precincts, with 31,900 square meters reserved for residential purposes. The entire new development is predicted to create upwards of 19,000 direct and indirect jobs in the African country. “With...
Apr 23, 2021
South Africa’s telecom sector has introduced its latest innovation with a new Black-owned mobile network operator. According to Independent Online, South African entrepreneur and investor Joel Mafenya is making waves in the telecommunications market after launching what is said to be the country’s first fully Black-owned cellular network operator — Taxicom Mobile. Taxicom Mobile officially launched in Johannesburg on Dec. 9, as reported by NOW in SA, and claims to usher in a new era for the telecom industry even as companies around the world grapple with the effects of COVID-19. As stated by founder Mafenya, his company aims to “accelerate access to inclusive mobile telecommunications services to the underserviced and excluded,” Independent Online shares. “This will be done through an introduction of a different model of meaningful ownership – with preference given to subscribers, distributors and its agents,” he said. Taxicom Mobile itself is a lifestyle virtual mobile network...
Dec 21, 2020
At a young age, his love for the consumption of stories about the stars and the moon helped him develop his passion for indigenous knowledge systems (IKS) research, specifically indigenous astronomy. Fast forward to 2019, Motheo Koitsiwe made history as the first to receive Africa’s first Ph.D. in indigenous astronomy from the North-West University (NWU) in South Africa. “This passion was ignited by my late grandmother, Mmamodiagane Tladinyane, when she narrated stories, poems, riddles, [and] songs of African night skies and cosmologies around the fireplace,” Dr. Koitsiwe shares with Face2Face Africa. It was years of the oral traditions of storytelling inspired by the cosmos that motivated him to investigate the African indigenous astronomy of the Batswana in South Africa and Botswana. In centuries past, Africans relied on the natural world around them to keep track of seasons, time, and directions as there were no gadgets like mobile phones and clocks to help with timekeeping. For...
Dec 2, 2020
Microsoft has had its eyes on Africa for quite some time now. The company launched its first offices in the continent more than 30 years ago, and now it is introducing two development centers in Kenya and Nigeria. Microsoft’s $100 million Africa Development Centres (ADC) will be housed in Nairobi, Kenya and Lagos, Nigeria. The centers will focus on engineering local and global impact solutions through AI, machine learning, and mixed reality innovation. The ADC comes a year after Microsoft opened data centers in South Africa, promoting business innovation in the cloud. Executive sponsor of the ADC and executive vice president at Microsoft, Phil Spencer, said that the center will be unlike any of Microsoft’s existing investments in Africa. “It will help us better listen to our customers, develop locally and scale for global impact,” Spencer said in a statement. “Beyond that, it’s an opportunity to engage further with partners, academia, governments and developers – driving impact in...
May 15, 2019
South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the country has launched a new $95 million fund to help grow small and medium-sized businesses as part of its CEO Initiative. South Africa’s government, business leaders and labor leaders partner to solve some of the countries largest economic issues for the CEO Initiative. Now, its latest fund will serve as a big step in the right direction. According to Focus Economics , South Africa has had slow economic growth since its recession last year, and now the country is taking steps to reverse its impact. Back in May, Ramaphosa helped pass economic reforms that would ultimately put South Africa back on the path to growth. Last month, Ramaphosa signed the Competition Amendment Bill aimed at boosting small and medium sized business in addition to expanding innovation and investing in the economy. The SA SME Fund will allocate capital to three types of funds — venture capital, growth, and social impact funds. These funds will invest...
Apr 2, 2019