Cape Town is world-renowned for its natural beauty—in fact, Buzzfeed crowned the picturesque port city the “Most Beautiful City in the World” in 2014. Beyond the breathtaking scenery, however, is a dynamic startup culture and community of tech entrepreneurs taking root in the Mother City.
In fact, South Africa’s second largest city is already being referred to as “The Silicon Cape” and the “Digital Gateway to Africa,” for good reason. Here are the top 11 Cape Town-based tech startups to watch for in 2016.
2go is a free mobile social networking app with 50 million registered users across Africa. One of the key ingredients of its success is support for Blackberry and Java-based phones, allowing for access to more niche user bases.
Perk offers large retailers, airports, and malls a way to engage with shoppers via their mobile devices while they’re still on-premise. The offering also features mobile tracking and analytics to improve operations, marketing, events, and leasing.
SBubble has developed a small sensor device that links to a child’s clothing—as soon as they step beyond the designated secure zone, the smartphone app will alert the parent or guardian.
An increasing number of Cape Town startups are focused on providing solutions to improve business efficiency. SnapBill one such startup: the company’s billing system is idea for any business that requires automated subscription and recurring billing with payment collection facilities.
Entersekt develops authentication and mobile security solutions for banks and enterprises. Its technology runs on almost all mobile phones and works by creating an isolated communication channel between the device and the financial institution.
Thanks to Receiptful, boring customer receipts and manual efforts creating and sending them are a thing of the past. The platform allows you to send personalized receipts custom-tailored to increase customer satisfaction.
Peach Payments develops payment solutions for online and mobile businesses, enabling merchants to easily accept payments from consumers across the globe—especially from customers in the emerging markets. The service enables payments across a variety of channels including the web and mobile apps.
Ekaya is challenging traditional models for renting with its direct-to-landlord rental app: the solution streamlines the entire process of securing a rental; for property owners, it serves as a platform to find the ideal tenant(s).
FitKey is like an Airbnb for fitness studios, enabling users to access to top gyms and exercise facilities for one low monthly fee. Try out a variety of programs—Yoga, Pilates, Crossfit, Boot Camp and many more—sans yearly contracts or commitments.
Nomanini—which means “Anytime” in Siswati, one of South Africa’s official languages—develops a payment platform that enables transactions in the cash-based informal retail sector.
WumDrop, available as both a web and mobile app, is essentially an Uber for delivery: users simply type in their desired pick-up address and drop-off details for quick and simply and simple deliveries.
More startups are now based in the region than anywhere else in South Africa—The Ventureburn Startup Survey 2015 revealed that 59% of the country’s startups are based in the Western Cape. Be sure to keep an eye on this dynamic city as it evolves into a global tech powerhouse to take on the best and brightest from Silicon Valley.