10 startups vie for R1m Joburg tech prize

Mobile apps. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
Mobile apps. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

Cape Town – Ten startups have been shortlisted for the finals of the #Hack.Jozi Challenge and R1m prize which seek to create an entrepreneurship culture in Johannesburg.

Startups include businesses focused on education, parenting, health and business, and the focus of the competition is both on social impact as well as profitable businesses.

“We want to help create businesses that impact the Johannesburg community so both are important. But the primary focus on the challenge is to equip SMEs to become successful businesses,” Zolani Matabese, head of broadband for the City of Joburg told Fin24.

“The judges scored each team based on the following criteria: The technical feasibility, scalability, and the wow-factor. The #Hack Jozi Challenge reaches far deeper into the Johannesburg community than just promoting the top ten finalists and rewarding the final winner and the two runners-up,” he added.

Over 400 entries were received for the #Hack.Jozi Challenge, which is a project of the City of Johannesburg and the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering at Wits University.

READ: Cape Town accelerator targets social transformation

Aspiring entrepreneurs attended a boot camp in April to prepare their business ideas for the judging phase.

On May 13, Wits will host a startup demonstration day where mentors and peers will exchange ideas on the viability of their businesses.

Matabese said that there were obligations on successful startups having to stay in South Africa.

“No, this is not part of the terms and conditions. We want our #HackJozi Challenge entrants and winners to be as successful as they can be. We would be delighted if they got a big international exit.”

Here are the finalists:

- Tuta-Me
- TimeWize Parental Control
- Mensch
- LCERT
- Spotless
- Advicement
- DUEPROP
- eSubmit
- Gradrr
- TechnoVera


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