CAPE TOWN – Seedstars World, A startup competition for emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes will be coming to South Africa for the fourth time this year.
Claudia Makadristo, Regional Manager for Africa at Seedstars said: “Seedstars World is a platform that connects investors and stakeholders with the next generation of entrepreneurs. Since this will be our fourth time organizing Seedstars World events in South Africa, the stakes are high and we are very excited. We have been in this ecosystem for more than three years now and know there are companies in South Africa developing high-quality products. We are looking for the best and will take them with us to Switzerland in 2019”
The event will take place in Cape Town and Johannesburg on the following dates:
- October 19th, at 4 pm – Cape Town, Applications open until October 11th
- November 2nd, at 4 pm – Johannesburg, Applications open until October 22nd
How it works, the Seedstars team will shortlist up to ten of the best seed-stage startups in each city to give a three-minute pitch in English, in front of a jury made up of local startup heavyweights.
The top three from the Cape Town and Johannesburg satellite events will join the other competitors in Cape Town’s main event and compete to be the country winner, who will represent SA at the Seedstars Summit in Switzerland.
The last event in Cape Town will happen on November 14th, at 4pm.
The companies selected to pitch at any of the events need to be less than two years old, have raised less than $500 000 (R7.4 million) in funding and built a minimum viable product, ideally with existing traction.
The Seedstars team is searching for one additional criterion: The startup’s regional and global scalability.
In order to provide local entrepreneurs with this opportunity and aiming to deliver the best possible event, Seedstars is closely working with PayFast who is the local supporter for the initiative across all the three events.
Its previous participants have raised more than $120m collectively, providing employment to more than 2 100 employees worldwide.
With a strong network of international partners, such as Merck, SPECo, Enel or Continental (among others) the competition organisers are looking for smart startups that tackle regional issues and develop profitable and sustainable products for the global market.
Members of the public and press are welcome to come to join the fun and should register on the above Seedstars websites as well!
According to Lorraine Davis, a Community Manager of the Seedspace Cape Town the event started in South Africa in 2015.
“We run 65+ local competitions where we identify the best seed-stage startups, give them pitch training and award the winners with an opportunity to compete in the Seedstars Summit where one of them will be crowned Seedstars World Global winner”, said Davis.
Davis said that they finding the different start-ups by reaching out to and inviting them to apply through:
- Social media
- Outreach partners
- Media – local and regional media
- Recommendations from accelerators, investors, past winners and past finalists
“Applications are still open for all the cities so we do not know yet which startups will be competing this year and we will be sharing a PR after selecting the finalists,” said Davis.
“There is a prize package consisting of up to $1m in equity investment and more in cash and in-kind prizes. Exposure to VCs, corporates and angels searching for investment opportunities. We also invest in (about) 20 companies through the exclusive Seedstars Growth program. Seedstars sponsors the winner to the regional and global summits and it will help them find potential partners and business opportunities”, said Davis.