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IBM South Africa, through its Equity Equivalence Investment Programme (EEIP) together with Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct, have announced the launch of a startup accelerator taking place from 8 October 2018 to 16 November 2018.  The Startup Accelerator is designed to enable the development of Growth Stage Tech and Digital Startups, using a bootcamp format that will run over six weeks.

The bootcamp will focus on enablement and development through a series of short, intensive and rigorous modules. Each module is specifically selected to address skills, resources, infrastructure and technology growth within the startup.  The bootcamp culminates in an investment proposal and pitch whereby the winning participants stand in line to win up to R500k in required products and services.

“Growing technology startups has long been a focus of the Precinct and we are pleased to partner with IBM SA to further develop this vital segment of the market. This bootcamp is centred on investment, one of the critical elements of any growing business. We look forward to working with the teams to make a bottom-line investment in tomorrow’s future technology leaders,” says Shaun Randles, Enterprise Development Manager, Tshimologong Precinct.

The Startup Accelerator is an initiative of the Enterprise Development Programme (EDP), one of 3 streams of the IBM SA Equity Equivalence Investment Programme (EEIP).  The EDP isfocused on the enablement of entrepreneurs and businesses with a highly specialised ICT focus in globally relevant areas of technology such as Big Data Analytics, Cloud Computing, Internet of Things and Cybersecurity, amongst other things.

To win the investment, the tech startups need to demonstrate how the investment will be used to accelerate the business. The growth trajectory the investment will yield must be based on tangible outcomes simulating financials and thus demonstrating an increase in revenue or job creation.  The investment must include their technology requirements for both internal operations and product scaling.

The startup will pitch its reasons why IBM should invest in the development of the business at an awards evening at Tshimologong Precinct taking place during Global Entrepreneurship Week 2018. The evening will be attended by a panel of industry thought leaders and influencers.

Interested participants need to ensure the business has a minimum of one-year trading as a CIPC registered business. The Growth Stage Tech Startup should be Black South African owned and managed. Turnover needs to be between R120k to R50 million per annum and the owner must be actively involved in the business. See the full list of eligibility criteria as well as other pertinent information by visiting www.tshimologong.joburg/programs/ibm-bootcamp/.