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Silicon Cape: Vinny Lingham & Justin Stanford

Vinny Lingham, founder and CEO of Yola, and Justin Stanford, founder and CEO of 4DI Capital, have a vision of a Western Cape ecosystem that brings together local and foreign investors, the brightest technical talent and the most promising entrepreneurs.

Juliet Pitman

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Justin Stanford

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille calledit “an historical event”. Dr Mamphela Ramphele, Chair of the TechnologyInnovation Agency, believed that the day would be “forever marked in thecalendar of South Africa’s innovation as ‘the beginning’.” 

They were addressing over 500 people atthe launch of the Silicon Cape Initiative. The brainchild of two of SouthAfrica’s brightest young entrepreneurial stars, it seeks to position Cape Townas Africa’s hub for venture capital, entrepreneurship and world-class IP. Silicon Cape is not owned by anyone orcontrolled by any single entity. “It is as much about a place as it is aboutthe people in it – it’s a living community. We wanted to start a conversation,to plant a seed in people’s minds about the idea and to position the WesternCape as the emerging Silicon Valley of Africa,” says Lingham. Cape Town has a lot of the naturalingredients that have made Silicon Valley what it is today – beautiful naturalscenery, great universities, personality and culture, a vibrant entrepreneurialcommunity, and a willingness from local government to support entrepreneurs.

Lingham and Stanford have a knack formaking things happen and attracting the right kind of attention. In addition toZille and Ramphele, the likes of Matthew Buckland, Dr Johan Rupert and LaurenceOlivier – all keynote speakers at the launch event – have put their weightbehind the Silicon Cape Initiative. Less than a month after launchingLingham and Stanford met with the Minister of Science and Technology NalediPandor. “She is keen to find out how she can engage with her colleagues innational government to help us in first rapidly unblocking the regulatory obstaclesthat make it hard for the ecosystem to develop, and then looking at possibleincentives to further grow it. This is very encouraging,” writes Stanford aboutthe meeting. They are realistic about the manyobstacles that the establishment of such an ecosystem presents, including lackof access to venture capital and angel investor funding, sub-standard bandwidthavailability and legislation that hinders the development of start-ups.

But they believe solving these problemsis critical, not only for the development of the Silicon Cape Initiative, butfor the country’s global competitiveness. “If we don’t become exporters of IP,we will become exporters of talent,” says Stanford. He and Lingham aredetermined to prevent that from happening, and to place the Cape on the globalentrepreneurial map. If the success they have achieved individually inlaunching global businesses is anything to go by, they have the vision, thecontacts, the drive and the energy to make it happen. 

Juliet Pitman is a features writer at Entrepreneur Magazine.

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Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

Live free of the opinion of other, but always in service, is one of the key principles Pat Pillai lives by.

CEOwise

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Pat Pillai, is a social entrepreneur who after being a national news anchor for 15 years, is founder and CEO of LifeCo UnLtd SA, which invests in impact entrepreneurs and impact enterprises. LifeCo UnLtd SA has benefited over 112 000 beneficiaries in SA (5000 are young entrepreneurs; 124 are established adult entrepreneurs, of those 76 are impact/social entrepreneurs).

Related: Mike Sharman Talks About Retroviral’s Successful Campaigns And The Importance Of Social Media In Marketing

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How Mark van Diggelen Pivoted To Create A Global Gaming Platform

“The day you stop getting enquiries about your product, you’re know you’re on the wrong track,” says Mark van Diggelen, CEO of GameZBoost.

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Mark van Diggelen is the CEO of GameZBoost, they created a white label mobile gaming platform that is currently deployed in 45 countries around the world. In addition, Mark’s mobile gaming tournaments have taken the industry by storm.

 

Related: Eben Uys Shares His Concept Behind Mad Giant Brewery And How You Can Make Your Business Stand Out In A Crowd

 

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Regine Le Roux Shares Why You Need To Be Proactively Managing Your Reputation

How and why you should be proactively manage your reputation and why it has nothing to do with marketing or PR.

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Regine Le Roux is founder of Reputation Matters, and she has been looking after company’s reputations for over a decade. Regine also published her first book aptly titled ‘Reputation Matters’ the building blocks to becoming the business people want to do business with.

Related: Vuyo Tofile Of EntBanc Group Talks About Finding Solutions And Partnering To Offer The Most Value

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